Torus bought the Melwood site in 2019. Credit: via planning documents

Transformation of iconic Liverpool FC training ground advances

Under plans lodged with Liverpool City Council, Torus is to redevelop the 12-acre Melwood facility in West Derby into a residential scheme featuring 96 extra care apartments, 66 houses and a sports academy run by ex-players Jamie Carragher and Robbie Fowler. 

The sports education academy will be operated by former Liverpool footballers Carragher and Fowler from within existing buildings at the site. Gymnast Beth Tweddle and swimmer Steve Parry will also run activities for local children from the facility.

In 2017, LFC outlined plans for a £50m expansion of its Kirkby facility, where the club’s academy has trained since the late 1990s, and announced its intention to sell Melwood – the long-time home of the Reds’ first team – to a developer.  

Torus bought the site in 2019 and engaged with architect Corstorphine & Wright to draw up plans to redevelop the site.  

Matt Brook, former design director at Corstorphine & Wright, has since set up on his own and taken the Melwood job with him. 

Under the plans, the one- and two-bedroom extra care apartments would be delivered in a single two-storey block in the eastern corner of the diamond-shaped site. Eight of the flats would be earmarked for people living with dementia. 

The houses, to be located to the south of the site, would be a mix of two-bedroom bungalows and terraces, as well as two- and three-bedroom semi-detached homes, and four-bedroom townhouses. 

All of the properties will be available for affordable rent or shared ownership. 

St Francis Gardens, wellbeing green space, and a community square, also feature in the plans. 

The streets will be designed “to place the car at the bottom of the movement hierarchy”, according to a planning statement from consultancy Turley. 

Carragher and Fowler’s academy will feature a new 3G pitch while existing buildings will be revamped to comprise a video analysis suite, sports science laboratory, swimming pool, indoor 7-a-side pitch, gym and student accommodation dormers for up to eight students. 

A spokesperson for Torus said: “Our proposed scheme for Melwood has been shaped around the vision of a sustainable, mixed-use, community-led asset for West Derby.

“We are confident that this ambitious housing focused scheme both respects the legacy of this landmark site and responds to the voices of local residents.”

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It`s good to see there will still be a Liverpool FC connection here via the sports facility, and good to see a mix of uses for the Mellwood site.
Once again we see a highly popular and populated area, ie West Derby, with poor rail facilities and a redundant railway line running throughout it with the station buildings intact, this surely needs to be brought back into use.

By Anonymous

When built it should have street names named after Liverpool legend’s. Rush, Barnes, Fowler, Carragher etc etc

By Darren Born Bred.

I cant believe how badly served that area is for public transport.

By Geoff

‘I cant believe how badly served that area is for public transport.’
What, you mean, a bus every 5-6 minutes through to the city centre via Tuebrook along the top of the site and around a 5 minute walk is a bus every 12 minutes through to the hospitals, Allerton and Aigburth Vale as well as every 12 minutes to Walton Vale and Bootle.

What exactly do you want, a door to door bus every 3 minutes?

By Anonymous

I have read all the articles regarding the re-development of Melwood in the last few weeks. What impact with this have on the Fowler/Carragher Football academy? What of the facilities will remain or be re-developed? I can understand why the site has development opportunities but with Robbie/Jamie buying into the academy gave the young lads the opportunity to train and play at an iconic venue. I feel a little concerned how it will develop going forward. How many pitches will the academy have?

By Parent of a student whose son was planning to attend the Fowler/Carragher academy

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