Hastings United FC are pleased to release updated concept images of the Combe Valley Sports Village Complex to be developed with its Partners and The Trustees of Horntye Park Sports Complex.
Since first releasing details last November about the proposed move to the Combe Valley site Club Directors Peter Sherlock & Daren Burney, both of whom have considerable experience in delivering Sports related Stadia and Training Grounds for Premiership Football teams, have been in dialogue with the site owner Hastings Borough Council and the planning authority Rother District Council.
Funding for the scheme has now been secured and National House builder Keepmoat Homes is taking a stake to deliver the Housing schemes as part of this important regeneration project.
Daren Burney commented ‘The response to date from both Hastings and Rother has been encouraging. The new fully sustainable Sports Hub will provide a wide range of sports facilities for the area, not least a brand new state of the art Stadium for Hastings United FC and a Cricket Ground and Pavilion for Horntye Park where Hastings & St. Leonards Priory CC currently play. In addition a sand dressed hockey pitch will be provided for South Saxons Hockey Club and also an indoor sports hall where various sports will be accommodated. The project is certainly gaining momentum and shortly we hope to commence the pre-application stage in terms of planning. Providing all goes well, in terms of our pre-application discussions and submissions, we would hope to be able to submit the planning application in early 2018 and deliver these first class facilities for the start of the 2019/20 football and hockey season’.
From a footballing perspective the New Stadium and facilities, will include conference and banqueting rooms plus meeting rooms, classrooms and a sports bar. In addition the Club will have access to a 3G pitch. These facilities will enable the Club to generate non match day revenue to re-invest into the Hastings United Football Academy, as well as in the first team. This will give the Club the support it needs to hopefully climb through the non-league football pyramid.
HUFC Director David Nessling commented ‘The Club has the drive and determination to move forward and play at a much higher level. We have wonderful supporters at our club who deserve success. We want to make them all proud and there is no reason why we cannot head towards the Football League in the next 7-10 years. Our academy investment is starting to reap rewards as we see several promising young players knocking on the door of the 1st team, and there is no reason why we cannot produce a regular stream of local talent going forward’.
Within the proposed scheme is also a sports hall and a gym for sports, fitness and healthy living activities. The project will bring £70M of new investment into Hastings & St. Leonards, made up of £58M for much needed new homes and £12M for brand new sports facilities.
Hastings United FC believes the project is the largest sports related scheme the Borough of Hastings will have ever seen or is likely to see. The project is intended to produce increased participation in sport via improved facilities for all, which will result in healthy living outcomes and savings to the NHS in the order of £28m. A substantial amount of new homes will be developed and there will be economic, social and community benefits arising, plus inward investment and vitality.
The Club believe there will be plenty of community gains arising from the sports village these include, easier travel access, increased cross fertilisation of sports, community access to sport from a wider catchment area and more benefits for disabled and disadvantaged groups. There will also be no adverse impacts, given the increase in facilities over and above those which exist.
The sports village project, in addition to the sports facilities, would also be expected to produce the following measurable benefits:
- £70M investment in the Hastings area.
- Residential developments to assist with housing needs.
- Construction jobs over the period of implementation.
- Sports village operational jobs.
- Leisure and wellbeing benefits.
- Health benefits from increased leisure activity.
- Fiscal benefits to Hastings Borough Council.
- Implementation of flood mitigation measures at Combe Valley.
The Club and its Partners plan to formally present the latest plans to both Rother District Council and Hastings Borough Council in the very near future, as well as holding Public Consultations later in the year. This allows the Public’s engagement before submission of the Planning Application at the start of 2018.
The opening of the new stadium will coincide with the 125th Anniversary of Hastings United Football Club.