Gartside: man with a plan - Chris Brunskill
It's clear that the Bolton Wanderers have no let a little thing like relegation stop the ambition of the club, and the plan announced today is certainly ambitious...
Today the club made public the proposals to invest £100 million in furthering the development of the Reebok and surrounding Middlebrook retail park. This would involve the construction of new facilities, including an education centre and sporting facilities. This proposal is being backed by Burnden Leisure PLC, Bolton's parent company, and the Bolton Arena Trust.
Bolton chairman Phil Gartside had this to say,
In 1996, the club's then board had the vision to build the Reebok Stadium. Now we are seeking to add to that vision with the planned creation of a major regional sports and education centre and offices at Middlebrook. This would maximise the potential of the existing facilities and develop further complementary elements.
Our scheme includes working closely with the Bolton Arena Trust to reconfigure the Arena. This would lead to a new sports building and also an upgrade of the football pitches and other sporting facilities, which would bring further benefits and usage for the community.
There are also plans to build a new education and welfare building at the Arena, along with the expansion of the West Stand at the Reebok Stadium. This would see the provision of up to 29,000 square metres of commercial and office accommodation adjacent to the stadium.
In addition, we will continue upgrading our facilities at the academy, including permanent changing rooms at Lostock.
These are all very exciting proposals and we will be working with local residents and all parties involved in these plans, as, together, we seek to make them a reality.
These are some good plans, although the details still haven't emerged, and it's good to see the club fighting stagnation, but considering they are already very far in debt, it is curious where all this money is going to come from.