Cheshire County FA, in partnership with Cheshire West & Chester Council and Ion Developments, is to develop a £70m football facility on a 60-acre site in Northwich.
The site is intended to become a leading centre for women and girls football, with a WSL 1 club in talks to become a partner. The site will also house a 150-bed hotel with spa and conference and event facilities, with banqueting for 400.
Two FIFA-quality Grassmaster Hybrid pitches will be located on the site, with one surrounded by a 1,000-seat stadium. The second will be allocated to private training for visiting national teams or international teams using the site in preparation for domestic or European competition.
The development will also include two 3G football pitches and six grass pitches, while Cheshire FA is proposing four education spaces designed to create and develop the coaches and referees of the future.
Cheshire FA business and operations manager and site founder Stuart Manifould said: “This site will become a world-renowned facility for the development of women’s football and will significantly improve the life chances and opportunities of all those involved in the game at every level.”
Steve Parry, managing director of Ion, said: “We are greatly looking forward to bringing what will become a world-class football centre with luxury hotel to Cheshire.
“The finished development will not only enhance Cheshire’s brilliant reputation as a footballing destination and bring hotel rooms to a thriving region, but will also give women and girls football the much needed facilities to help reach its full potential.”
Keith Ashton, chief executive of architect Space & Place, which numbers Manchester among its four offices, said: “We’ve been designing sports facilities for 40 years, from Olympic Games venues to community clubhouses and rarely does a project such as this excite us so much.
“This is an opportunity to design a facility that truly makes a difference from grassroots participants to elite level athletes in one place.”