Wolverhampton Wanderers has said it could start work on expanding its Molineux home stadium as earlier as next year, with initial plans suggesting the Sir Jack Hayward Stand could be the first stand to be redeveloped.
The Championship football club has sold out home games on a number of occasions this season as the team stormed to the title, clinching promotion to the top-tier Premier League in the process.
While demand for tickets in the latter part of the season has been high, managing director Laurie Dalrymple said the club is keen to establish itself as a Premier League team before committing to stadium redevelopment.
However, Dalrymple hinted to the Express & Star newspaper that should Wolves remain in the top flight after the 2018-19 season, redevelopment work could begin in the summer before the 2019-2020 campaign.
“There are a few things up in the air but the plan at this stage is to be in a position where we’d start the redevelopment in summer 2019,” Dalrymple said.
“We’ve started those discussions and they’ve accelerated since Christmas. We’ve got a few bits and pieces we need to tie up in terms of what’s physically ours, around Molineux. Those discussions are continuing.”
Earlier in the year, reports emerged that Wolves was considering plans to create one of the biggest single-tier stands in the country by redeveloping the Sir Jack Hayward Stand behind one of the goals.
The Express & Star said this appears to remain the plan with talks ongoing to purchase land behind the stand from the much-troubled Carillion, with the idea of transforming the ‘South Bank’ into a single-tier, 10,000 capacity stand
“The process is still being debated now in terms of what we think is the right order to do it,” Dalrymple said. “But we will be doing that through fan consultation and dialogue with architects and developers that will give us the right approach.
“If you were to look at it simplistically, you’d say the Steve Bull stand needs to be razed to the ground tomorrow, but we need to look at a wider perspective in terms of what’ll have the least impact for bums on seats.
“We definitely want to keep the South Bank as a single tier.
“There’s a strong argument to say once we’ve got our land and bits and pieces tied up we would start with a build project that would incorporate a much bigger, newer South Bank that would allow us to have a lesser drop in terms of attendances when we came to sorting out the Steve Bull.”