Wales

Wrexham Racecourse: 'Scandalous' if land not kept for stadium

Land behind the Kop at Wrexham's Racecourse football ground Image copyright Google
Image caption The site is attractive to developers but essential to the stadium, says Plaid AM Llyr Gruffydd

Plans to revitalise Wrexham's Racecourse football ground could be thwarted if land behind a derelict stand is sold for other developments, a Welsh Assembly member has warned.

The Welsh Government has made two bids to buy the site, without success.

Glyndwr University, which owns the land, is now understood to be in negotiations with a private firm.

Plaid Cymru AM Llyr Gruffydd said it would be "scandalous" if the land was not secured for the stadium scheme.

"It's clear that this is an important gateway site to Wrexham in terms of road and rail access," he told the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

"Therefore it's deeply concerning that Glyndwr University appears to be pressing ahead with plans to sell this land to a private developer, something that could undermine the entire regeneration project."

Mr Gruffydd, a regional AM for North Wales, said restoring the Racecourse to a four-sided stadium with modern facilities was "essential to the future success of Wrexham, the football club and the region as a whole".

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Wales played at the Racecourse for the first time in 11 years in March, beating Trinidad and Tobago

Wrexham council leader Mark Pritchard urged the Welsh Government to offer more money if necessary to secure the site.

It is believed the university is looking for a figure around £1m.

Lesley Griffiths, environment minister and AM for Wrexham, said the Welsh Government's commitment and ongoing work "cannot be questioned".

"It is vital all parties work together in order to achieve the best possible outcome for the town," she said.

Glyndwr University has stressed that "all options are being considered".

A spokesperson said: "We are totally committed to regenerating the area around Wrexham General Station, including the land behind the Kop which is owned by the university.

"As a valued and important stakeholder, Wrexham AFC continue to be consulted about potential options as they emerge - as do all other parties."

International football returned to the Racecourse after an 11-year break in March when Wales played Trinidad and Tobago, winning 1-0.

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