Hereford & Worcester

Hereford Rugby Club move to Hampton Bishop approved

Combined plans to build a new ground for Hereford Rugby Club and 190 homes have been approved.

The club will move from Wyeside, in Hereford, to Hollywell Gutter Lane, near the village of Hampton Bishop.

Hereford Council approved the plans despite Hampton Bishop Parish Council Chairman Norman White complaining they would produce an "urban sprawl".

The land has been bought by the club for £1 but the new ground will cost about £4.5m to build.

Guy Griffiths, former Hereford RFC chairman, said: "We don't want to make any impact on either Hampton Bishop or nearby Tupsley.

'Fit in'

He added: "The last thing I want as a Herefordian is to make it look bad, we want to try and fit in with the environment."

The plans for the rugby club, which were first submitted four years ago, were approved by councillors at a meeting on Wednesday.

Mr White said residents in the area were unhappy about the site of the development, increased traffic on the B4224, building houses on a flood plain and the appearance of the club house.

He added: "We wish the rugby club well - we just think it's the wrong site. We're doubling in size from a small rural parish to an urban sprawl."

The plans split the site into two zones, with 190 homes and an area for allotments being built to the west and the rugby club facilities to the east.

These will include grass and all-weather pitches, a club house, an indoor training building and a sports centre for public use.

The rugby club has said it aims to build the new ground by 2014.

It plans to rent out its old ground to local schools and community groups.

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