Ebbsfleet United submit plans for 1,750 supporter stand and integrated hotel at Stonebridge Road
PUBLISHED: 12:11 20 March 2017 | UPDATED: 12:11 20 March 2017
Ady Kerry /AK Pictures
The club is working to achieve a planning consent from Gravesham Borough Council in May so work can start this coming June
Development of Ebbsfleet United’s Stonebridge Road stadium has taken another step after the club submitted plans for a new stand and integrated hotel.
Initially the stand, at the Plough End, will accommodate 1,750 supporters on standing terraces with the ability to convert to seating when appropriate.
The club is working to achieve a planning consent from Gravesham Borough Council in May so work can start this coming June – with a projected completion date of April 2018.
It comes as work draws to a close on the Fleet’s 5,000-seater main stand, which the club’s owners have deemed necessary in order to generate greater revenue and avoid a repeat of the circumstances which brought about its near closure in 2013.
A club spokesperson said: “On a small site, the design has to be integrated to maximise use of the currently available area and we are now working on our plans for the Swanscombe End which will be communicated to supporters when they reach a finalised stage.
“Outline planning permission has been granted for all four sides of the stadium, but each phase requires submission of a detailed planning application, in this case with the amended design for the hotel, before the commencement of any works.”
The terracing will run along one tier across the full length of the Plough End and the site will make full use of the land to the limits of the current boundaries owned by the club.
The ability to convert to seating means the club is able to meet fan demands of terracing - widely associated with a better matchday atmosphere - while also being capable of meeting the necessary seating requirements in higher leagues.
The 55-room hotel, on three levels, is designed with a lobby opening out on to a forecourt on Stonebridge Road roughly where the present turnstiles are situated, with new turnstiles and an access gate moved further inside the present site.
Non-matchday car parking, a pick-up/drop-off point and a cycle store are also to be located in that area.
Discussions are ongoing with the planned hotel operator about usage of its bar on matchdays, while the club is also looking at options for opening up facilities in the main stand and elsewhere pending further development, including the possibility of a bar for away supporters if and when segregation needs to be implemented.