English Championship football club Nottingham Forest will be able to press ahead with redevelopment work at the City Ground after securing a new 250-year lease at the stadium.
Nottingham City Council has agreed to grant the club the lease following “extensive negotiations” over a planned expansion from 30,000 to 38,000 seats. The current 50-year agreement will be superseded by the 250-year extension.
“When we announced our plans for the redevelopment of the stadium, we recognised the importance to remain at our iconic home,” Forest chairman Nicholas Randall said.
“We understand what it means, not only to our supporters, but also for the people of the city and we are now delighted to have secured our lease for a further 250 years.
“We have been speaking to representatives of key groups involved in the redevelopment planning and will continue to do so to ensure the stadium is a place we all feel proud of.”
The creation of a new Peter Taylor Stand is set to be central to the planned improvements, while the Trentside area, the Brian Clough and Bridgford Stands are also set to benefit from renovation work.
The new Peter Taylor Stand will receive a museum, a new club shop, a range of hospitality lounge options and restaurants and executive boxes. New concourses will also be created for general-admission supporters, along with improved facilities for disabled supporters and a significant increase in wheelchair spaces.
As part of the new lease deal, Forest will increase the size of their rented area to include the land on Trentside North, behind the Trent End, and will take on responsibility for the boat houses at both ends of the site boundary. These had previously been tenants of the City Council, but new facilities will be built as part of the project.
Councillor David Mellen, leader of Nottingham City Council, said: “We share Nottingham Forest’s ambition for their redeveloped ground and have been pleased to work with them on the project. We understand what a huge difference it will make to Nottingham to have such a top-level sporting venue.
“We’re lucky that we have a proud sporting heritage in the city. Nottingham already boasts a world-class cricket ground, an elite-level ice hockey team and international-quality tennis facilities. This redevelopment of The City Ground will cement the reputation as a renowned sporting venue.
“It also forms part of the wider Nottingham Southside regeneration with £2bn of developments across a 0.5 square mile area. These exciting changes represent a new era for Nottingham, bringing thousands more jobs, millions more visitors and economic growth for the benefit of the entire city.”
Image: Nottingham Forest/Benoy