WASPS and Old Leamingtonians have announced planning application to Warwick District Council to progress the vision for a centre of excellence for rugby is now underway.
The plans to build Wasps new training ground on the current site of Old Leamingtonians RFC will allow for state-of-the-art facilities that will benefit both clubs, with rugby pitches for every Old Leamingtonians age group, plus an artificial pitch to withstand winter conditions and allow for other community sporting activities.
Wasps will have dedicated pitches and an elite training centre constructed on the land, with legal contracts agreed to provide the Premiership side with a long lease on the development.
Meetings with parish councillors in Cubbington, Stoneleigh, Blackdown and Milverton have so far proved promising as plans to transform The Crofts ground advance to the next stage.
CEO of Wasps Nick Eastwood is positive about the progress made so far in the development of the two club’s combined vision.
“We already have an excellent relationship with Old Leamingtonians RFC and we now have joint ambitions to transform The Crofts into an elite centre of excellence for rugby, enabling wider community participation and for rugby to continue to flourish in the region,” he said.
“The plans have been well received by the parish councils that we have spoken with and the focus now is working with Warwick District Council through the planning process.”
Whilst developments begin to take shape, Wasps will remain training at their current training base at Broadstreet RFC after agreeing a new deal with the existing tenants.
“Broadstreet RFC have served the club well since our move to the midlands with their fantastic facilities, and we are pleased to be able to continue using them while our new plans take shape” Eastwood said.
Old Leamingtonians chairman Phil Eales is enthusiastic about the future of the club thanks to the joint project with Wasps.
“We believe this association with a Premiership rugby club will strengthen Old Leamingtonians RFC’s position as one of the leading grassroots rugby clubs in the region.
“Our existing facilities will be extended and improved for our range of teams which include men, ladies, minis, juniors, and mixed ability. We have had huge backing for these plans from our members and the wider community.
“We look forward to working with Wasps to realise their ambitions” said Eales.