THE nation’s sporting fixtures may be on hold, but a Bradford football club has just been granted permission for a major upgrade of its stadium.

Bradford Council has recently approved Bradford (Park Avenue)’s plans for work to Horsfall Stadium, including new floodlights, changing facilities and a hospitality suite.

The club plans to turn the stadium into a community sports hub, and earlier this month plans to replace it’s existing pitch with a 3G pitch were approved by planners.

Now a second application, for LED floodlighting around pitch and the construction of a two-storey modular cabin building for hospitality and changing room facilities has been approved.

Planning officers for Bradford Council said the club plays a “vital role” in the community, and that these facilities would enhance that role.

Bradford (Park Avenue) plan Horsfall upgrade after securing lease

The club announced ambitious plans to improve the stadium last year after the club have agreed terms on a 30-year lease to take control of their ground from Bradford Council.

The installation of the 3G pitch, which will be suitable for rugby as well as football - is central to the club’s plans, along with the improved lighting, fencing, roadways, parking and some building work.

The aim was to turn the stadium into a better facility for the club and other local sports teams, as well as the wider community.

The new building will include the hospitality room, a bar, kitchen and four changing rooms with showers.

On the hospitality block plans, the club’s application, which was submitted earlier this year, said: “The new hospitality block provides additional changing facilities for the stadium which can increase use and provide flexibility across the pitches.

“A flexible suite means a range of activities can occur on the site at different times meaning it becomes used more often.

“The suite can be used by the Bradford (Park Avenue) AFC, the Horsfall College of Sport and students from local schools and colleges and The Horsfall Community Trust.

“The modular block has an adaptable interior and so can be used for much needed match day hospitality, classrooms, community space, changing facilities and WCs.”

Approving the scheme last week, planning officers said: “The primary concern would be as a consequence of the floodlighting.

“These will be four in number and mounted on 22m poles.

“They will replace the existing floodlights. The impact of the floodlighting is somewhat mitigated by the fact that this site has been illuminated in this manner for a number of years, so the high level of illumination provided by the lights will not be unexpected or, out of place in this setting.

“Modern lighting, such as this proposed, can be controlled so as to avoid light spill and harm to the wider amenity of the area.

“The building and lighting are necessary part of the sports hubs operation which plays an important role in the local community and wider district.

“The building is of a uninspiring, utilitarian design and appearance.

“However, the siting and scale will serve to limit the visual impact and, when considered in the context of the stadium’s large metal-clad spectator stands and similar, albeit single storey, buildings close to the entrance, its impact is significantly reduced and it will not appear out of place.

“The sports hub plays a valuable role in the local community and these additions will enable it to continue fulfilling this role and will serve to improve the visitor experience.”

One condition of the approval is the floodlights can only be used between 9am and 10pm.