Burnley FC spearheads town regeneration plan

Burnley FC has unveiled plans for the redevelopment of Turf Moor and surrounding area including a new 'football university'.

Paul Fletcher, chief executive of the club, said talks have started with Burnley Council and Liverpool John Moores University to build a specialist campus for football finance, sponsorship, stadium design and catering.

Under the ambitious plans, a new stand would have large sliding shuttered doors capable of turning the stand into a closed arena for concerts and conferences, complete with 60-bed hotel, as a new revenue stream.

Fletcher said: "If you dare to dream, dream big, and this is not just about Burnley Football Club, this is about the whole town of Burnley and potentially leaving a massive legacy brought on by promotion to the Premier League."

Prince Charles during his visit to BurnleyBurnley Cricket Club would relocate to Towneley Park and the Weaver's Triangle district would be redeveloped for use as student accommodation and an entertainment complex. The new university would be based on the site of Burnley Cricket Club.

The plans were announced during a visit to Burnley by the Prince of Wales last Friday, 5 February.

Fletcher said: "On the basis of one idea involving the building of a new stand at the football club, this could become a much bigger idea shared by all parties.

"The name of Burnley is now right around the world because of our standing in the biggest league in world football. Our games are beamed around the world and they all now know where we are.

"The trick now is getting people here. The university would do that and allow students from across the world to learn about every facet of the business side of the biggest sports industry in the world.

"Burnley Cricket Club are another important partner and the plans, which we have discussed with them, offer the chance to become self-sufficient at a brand new state-of-the-art facility.

"This really is a win-win situation for everyone. The cricket club gets a brand new ground and the opportunity to be a profitable club in a beautiful location. The football club gets a new stand that isn't compromised and can be used seven days a week. The town gets a new university and finally the Weaver's Triangle is redeveloped."

Upgrading the Leeds/Liverpool Canal and Yorkshire Street as the gateway to the new university and re-opening the Todmorden Curve, linking Burnley directly to Manchester via a dedicated rail link are also being discussed.

The plans would be a collaboration between partners including Burnley Football Club, Burnley Borough Council, The Prince's Charities and Burnley Cricket Club, while funding for the multi-million-pound scheme would be raised through debt funding, private equity and grant funding.

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Shouldn’t it be : Burnley FC spears town relegation plan?

By Owen coyle

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