Report addresses future of Wellesley Ground as music events are touted

PUBLISHED: 11:16 02 March 2018

The Wellesley, home of Great Yarmouth Town F.C. looking splendid in the snow. Photo: Anne Jones

The Wellesley, home of Great Yarmouth Town F.C. looking splendid in the snow. Photo: Anne Jones

Anne Jones

It is home to what is believed to be the oldest football grandstand, as well as two of Great Yarmouth’s leading sports teams.

But could it also soon be the home of outdoor music events?

A new report to be presented to councillors has identified a number of issues with the Wellesley Recreational Ground in need of addressing - including parts left redundant and increasing anti-social behaviour.

The report - due to be presented to borough council’s housing and neighbourhoods committee - outlines a range of opportunities for the council to make the most of the facility, with a new 3G pitch heavily touted among them.

Prepared by strategic director Kate Watts, the report recommends the council allocates up to £25,0000 from its reserve to fund a feasibility study into the project, as well as forming a working group of five elected members to lead the study.

Although the 3G pitch - costing around £650,000 and requiring Football Association funding - remains the focal point of the project, the report identifies a variety of other opportunities.

Among these it says: “The heritage aspect of the site could be further developed, alongside bringing the two buildings not currently in use (the bowls ticket office and the tennis pavilion ticket office), back into use.

“Consideration should also be given to other outdoor leisure needs for the borough, outside of football, to see if additional sports facilities could be developed on site.”

The Great Yarmouth Borough Council report also alludes to the possibility of using the site for outdoor music events and other, non-sporting, activities.

The council already has the support of two major organisations in relation to the project - the Football Association and Sport England - although the latter have said they would be unable to offer any funding.

The site was earmarked as a priority for the council last summer, with this report presenting the next stage of plans for it.

In it, a range of concerns were raised around the current state of the site - including the lights in the West Stand having been vandalised beyond repair.

The Wellesley Recreational Ground is currently home to Great Yarmouth Town Football Club and also the Great Yarmouth Athletics Club.

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