Bath Rugby Club

Rugby club reveals new stadium plans

Bath Rugby Club has revealed plans to develop a new stadium at the Recreation Ground (the Rec) in the heart of Bath.

The rugby club has launched ‘Stadium for Bath’, a flagship project that brings together the club, Bath Rugby Foundation and Arena 1856, who share the ambition to deliver a new stadium at the Rec.

Stadium for Bath has published a document which details the opportunity it believes the redevelopment at the Rec can offer – not only for the rugby club, but for the wider community and the city of Bath.

‘Exploring the Opportunity’ includes findings from independently facilitated, ‘pre-design’ listening consultation workshops, which took place throughout 2017.

Before the designs are produced, the team has focused on listening to the thoughts, hopes and concerns of several stakeholder groups regarding the redevelopment.

The groups included local residents and near neighbours, city representatives, local community groups, technical planning consultees and supporters.

The document includes the overall vision for the development, consideration of the unique challenges of the site, thoughts on opportunities offered by redevelopment and the key parameters for the appointment of a lead architect and design team.

Tarquin McDonald, chief executive of Bath Rugby, said: “For most of this year, we have been listening to the people that live and work here in Bath.

“This is a complex project, of huge importance to all involved and we will get it right if we all work together.

“We now believe there is an opportunity to create something exceptional in the heart of this incredible city.

“Something which reflects its ambition and rich heritage and is a source of pride and inspiration for everyone.”

This latest announcement closes the door on the previous design proposals, which were presented nearly four years ago.

Tarquin continued: “At the core of this sits a new stadium at the Rec and a new home for Bath Rugby.

“However, it is clear that this project is not just about rugby.

“There is a unique opportunity to create a destination which revitalises the riverside, which benefits and enhances the community and encourages healthier living through accessible and inclusive sporting participation.

“We believe that with the right design team we can find a solution which both celebrates and complements Bath, and which ensures that Bath Rugby continues to be a source of pride and inspiration for the city.”

Stadium for Bath is expected to appoint a lead architect in the new year and begin the design journey.

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