A NORTH Wales soccer team have won the go-ahead for a £500,000 stadium which will keep them in top flight Welsh football – and meet European standards.
The search is on for funding to make the Connah’s Quay Nomads dream a reality.
The fourth-placed Welsh Premier League side received approval for their plans this week from Flintshire County Council’s planning committee.
Nomads have been based at the Deeside Stadium since moving from Halfway Ground in 1998.
In February this year, however, a deal was struck for Nomads to play their home ties at Flint Town United's Cae Y Castell ground while work is carried out to revamp the Stadium pitch at Deeside College.
The new plan will see them relocate to Dock Road in Connah’s Quay, alongside the River Dee.
The site will include a spectator stand incorporating changing rooms and clubhouse facilities, floodlights and two training pitches.
From the 2009/10 season, all clubs competing in the Welsh Premier League must have a ground that holds a minimum of 500 seats and have floodlight intensity of 500 lux. The new ground would meet these standards.
Club chairman John Gray said: “Our ultimate aim is to be playing European football, and if we move to Dock Road, we would have a ground capable of doing that.”
Nomads train on the Dock Road playing fields, which they rent at a peppercorn rate from Flintshire County Council.
By moving wholesale to the site, club bosses believe it will put them on a sounder financial footing.
They see the facility as becoming central to the Connah’s Quay community.
They are considering a synthetic surface for one of the pitches, which would be open to use for other teams and members of the public seven days a week.
Mr Gray estimates it will cost in the region of £500,000 to build the facility including a synthetic pitch.
Without a synthetic pitch, he reckons the cost would be closer to £300,000.
Mr Gray, managing director of DACS Ltd, said one way the club would look to fund the move was by applying for grant aid from the Football Association of Wales, which has allocated cash to the Welsh Premier League for infrastructure projects.
FORMED in July 1946 as Connah’s Quay Juniors, the present-day Nomads club was the brainchild of the Everton and Wales centre-half Tommy (T.G.) Jones.