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Fleetwood get go ahead for stand

Fleetwood Town's £4m development of their East Stand at Highbury football stadium has been granted consent by Wyre Borough Council.

Preston-based specialist sport architects Frank Whittle Partnership designed the new 2,000-seat stand, which will form the centrepiece of the new Highbury.

The three-tier East Stand, off Nelson Road, will contain five executive boxes, a lounge, facilities to serve the adjacent Memorial Park pitches and an IT suite. It will include the club's own changing rooms, administration offices, physiotherapy and kit rooms and club shop.

Work is expected to begin shortly on the new stand; the fourth new stand to be built at Highbury in recent years. The plans mark the final phase of the Blue Square North League club's project to increase the capacity of Highbury stadium to 5,000, in order to meet Football League requirements.

Fleetwood Town has risen rapidly through the non-league ranks and is currently pressing for promotion to the national Football Conference, one step below the Football League. If they gain promotion it will be the club's fourth step up in six seasons.

Brent Clayton, a partner at FWP, said: "Fleetwood Town is ambitious and wants to be a Football League club sooner rather than later. Our expertise in designing modern sports stadia helps a club grow on and off the pitch.

"The vision of the club, which we have helped them realise, is for greater community and corporate involvement to give Fleetwood Town the status and facilities necessary to compete at higher levels in football."

FWP designed Preston North End's rebuilt Deepdale. Fleetwood Town was advised by Paul Walton of De Pol Associates, a Preston-based planning consultancy.

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