Designer nets new football stadium gig

Accrington Stanley has appointed Frank Whittle to redesign its stadium
Accrington Stanley has appointed Frank Whittle to redesign its stadium
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A Preston-based designer has scored a new contract with a Lancashire football club.

The Frank Whittle Partnership (FWP) has been selected to carry out work on Accrington Stanley’s multi-million pound redevelopment of its Wham Stadium home.

Owner Andy Holt has hailed a new era at Accrington Stanley after the League Two club put forward plans for the redevelopment.

Mr Holt has been in talks with Hyndburn Council since he took over the League Two club in October last year about securing a new lease on the ground.

Terms have been agreed on a 50-year lease and now plans are in to begin the first phase of the proposed development which is a new 1,500 capacity all-seater stand down the Whinney Hill side of the ground.

The new stand designed by FWP, which has offices in Preston, Manchester and London, will have modern spectator facilities in the concourse and the potential to be split to accommodate home and away supporters.

The single-tier stand is also future-proofed with the possibility of adding corporate entertainment boxes and facilities built into its design.

The present stadium has a capacity of just over 5,000 and that figure is planned to remain the same under the redevelopment plan.

Mr Holt said: “We have been working together with the council and local community and looking at a substantial investment that will improve the entire area.

“We will create community facilities that should make the whole area something the people of Accrington can be proud of.

“It will be also a major boost for football fans coming to the Wham Stadium and improve their match day experience.”

Neil Ainsworth, a partner at FWP, is leading the design team on the project. He said: “We are all excited by the potential to create a modern, vibrant new home for one of the most instantly recognised names in the footballing world.

“Having designed and built around 60 new stadiums and facilities for clubs up and down the leagues and the country, we know what works best for each club and how to make the new ground a real asset to the club, its fans and the town.”