Industry News

Watford eyeing Vicarage Road expansion

Watford chairman and chief executive Scott Duxbury has revealed that the Premier League club is looking to expand its Vicarage Road stadium from its current capacity of 21,577.

Speaking at the ‘At Our Place’ forum event last week, Duxbury said that the stadium could potentially be expanded to seat up to 30,000 people, although plans are at an early stage.

Watford has played at Vicarage Road since the stadium opened in 1922. The ground underwent expansion in 2015 when 700 seats were added to the Sir Elton John Stand.

“We’ve engaged a company to conduct a survey to see how we can expand the stadium but still keep the aesthetic look we have now,” Duxbury said. “They are looking at the Sir Elton John Stand and the Graham Taylor Stand and seeing what is the most effective way for us to expand.

“We are already in dialogue with the council. While I won’t go into specific timelines, we hope that sooner rather than later we will be able to close on a plan. We are looking at two scenarios, one taking us to 25,000 and one taking us to 30,000. I would like to take us to 30,000, because it puts us in that tier of clubs just outside the top six.

“What we are going to do at the stadium, and our desire to increase the capacity, isn’t to generate new revenue, but to give us a technical advantage because on a matchday it does make a difference. The more numbers we can get the more likely we are going to make this a fortress.”

Vicarage Road is one of the smallest grounds in the Premier League, with only Vitality Stadium (AFC Bournemouth), Liberty Stadium (Swansea City) and Turf Moor (Burnley) seating fewer fans.

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