Sligo Rovers reveal plans for...


Sligo Rovers reveal plans for Showgrounds redevelopment

Phil Egan
Phil Egan

09:29 18 May 2021

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Sligo Rovers plan to redevelop the Showgrounds into a 6,000 seater stadium and build a new academy complex.

The plan has been endorsed by Sligo County Council and the FAI, and the project is set to cost €17.3 million.

The redeveloped Showgrounds would have a seated capacity of 6,000, surpassing all the requirements of a UEFA Category 3 stadium.

It includes the retention of the existing Tracey Avenue Stand and Railway End Stand, with alterations to both, the construction of a new stand at the Church Hill Road End and a new stand in place of the current Jinks Avenue Stand.

New floodlights, turnstiles, hospitality spaces, shops, corporate and sponsors facilities, offices, meeting rooms, upgraded media facilities, multiple changing rooms and a gym would be part of the redevelopment.

The SSE Airtricity Premier Division club are also set to open up the stadium to other sports with a provisional agreement in place with Sligo Rugby to host games.

The Bit O’ Red are also willing to host provincial matches for regional use for the "betterment of north-west sport."

The club has held preliminary discussions with Sligo County Council and a site in the region of eight acres is required.

The club aims to expand the number of teams under the Sligo Rovers badge to 13 by the middle of this decade in order to create a pathway for children to be active and achieve in sport.

Speaking at the unveiling, club chairman Tommy Higgins said: "Today we present a vision that has been created not just over the last year but through the growth and enhancement of the club in its modern existence.

"We see unlimited potential in Sligo Rovers Football Club. Today the football represents a beacon and focal point of the community, something we have worked tirelessly to achieve.

"We also have a youth set-up which is developing countless footballers going on to play senior League of Ireland football each year, while still being in its infancy.

"Prior to Covid-19, we had 11 players involved with Ireland at underage level during one calendar year and our desire is to invest further in the area.

"In the future we want to develop a facility that can raise standards even further across the board.

"That is by improving football players through investment in coaching, teams and the experience of the supporter to enhance our attendance figures.

"As a community club we also seek to bring further benefits to our local economy and provide the opportunity to young boys aspiring to become the next Seamus Coleman to live out their dream, and for girls who need more front of house women wearing the Bit O’ Red of Sligo Rovers as soon as possible."

FAI CEO Jonathan Hill added: "We talk a lot about football in the community, not just here in Ireland but across the globe, and Sligo Rovers are standard-bearers in this regard.

"I am delighted to see the range of this Development Plan which reflects the club’s standing in the Sligo community in a fitting manner.

"Such development is a cornerstone of our vision for the future of all our League of Ireland clubs. Well done to all involved with this project."

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FAI SSE Airtrcity Premier Division Showgrounds Sligo Rovers

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