Rugby revamp will let Silkmen train in town
MACCLESFIELD Rugby Club has revealed its controversial redevelopment plans will allow Macclesfield Town FC to train in the town.
The club, which plays at Priory Park, wants to sell some of its ground to fund a new clubhouse, which will open to the community, a new kitchen and a gym.
The original land and current clubhouse will make way for 76 new homes and the existing pitches will be reorganised to retain four, fullsized adult pitches - including an artificial pitch, and four small pitches for the mini and junior teams.
The development, which is expected to be decided by Cheshire East Council’s strategic planning committee on June 28, will also allow the Silkmen to train in their home town rather than their current facility in Knutsford.
The scheme, a joint plan with developer Jones Homes, has support from Sport England, Cheshire RFU and the national RFU, there is some objection including from Macclesfield Town Council on the basis that it impacts on the green belt.
Peter Harper, the club chairman, urged decision makers to back the plans.
He said: “We hope the decision makers recognise the importance of our club as a community asset and the hard work the club have put in over recent years to bring forward these proposals for the good of the Club, the sport and the people of Macclesfield.
“The club’s facilities are in desperate need of investment and like most community clubs at this level, we try to keep our membership fees and ticket prices affordable and re-invest the receipts into the players and the sport.”
The club, which was formed 130 years ago, wants to start a ladies team but says it is ‘impossible’ with the current facilities.
“The development will allow Macclesfield Town FC to train in Macclesfield at this site.
“Currently there are no pitches available to them in Macclesfield, meaning they have to train in Knutsford.
“These new facilities would be open to the whole Macclesfield Community and we have had interest from several schools and other sports clubs, keen to share the new pitches and clubhouse.”
Macclesfield Town Council claims the development removes the green gap and causes highways issues.
Redevelopment plans for Macclesfield Rugby Club