Grayson hails PNE’s training ground vision

Boss Simon Grayson at PNE's current Springfields training base.
Boss Simon Grayson at PNE's current Springfields training base.
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Manager Simon Grayson has hailed Preston North End’s vision of a new training ground as key to their Premier League ambitions.

The Lilywhites have announced plans to move from their current Springfields base to land belonging to owner Trevor Hemmings but currently used by Ingol Golf Club.

The proposals for the a 172-acre site, which would see PNE also gift the city its first new public park in more than a century, include an indoor training facility, four full-size pitches and two five-a-side pitches.

“It speaks volumes for the club that we’re trying to keep on moving forward year in, year out,” Grayson said of the plans that have been met with objections from golfers and nearby residents.

“We’ve got some good facilities at Springfields but trying to get even more modern ones can only help.

“Your facilities at this level have to be very good because the players are here for 10 months of the season and it can only help attract new players as well so hopefully we’ll get the go-ahead to do it and we can get in there very quickly.

“It’s really pleasing we’re moving forward as a club and hopefully this can develop.”

Grayson has been consulted on the vision as the club look to develop a facility that will help take them to the top flight for the first time since 1961.

“I’ve been asked for my thoughts and what we’d like to have involved with it all,” said the Deepdale boss, who is hoping to guide his side to victory over Newcastle United today.

“A nice big jacuzzi in the manager’s office and stuff like that! I’m not sure that plan has quite gone through yet though.

“But it’s all part of parcel of the manager’s involvement in it, looking at what’s required.

“We’ve got the expertise of Peter (Risdale) who was at Leeds when that training centre was opened which was one of the best ones around at the time.

“Everybody’s involvement can only help.”

North End have also been casting their eye over other developments, Grayson getting a first-hand look at the set-ups at both Burnley and Fleetwood when PNE played behind-closed-doors games during the last international break.

“These talks and chats behind the scenes have been going on for a while now,” he said.

“It’s just come to fruition now that the plans can go in.

“We’ve looked at all the different designs of different clubs and how we can improve ours.

“I was down at Burnley the other week and that’s going to be a fantastic facility and you’re obviously trying to take ideas from everywhere.

“If and when it gets done it will be a big help to everybody.”

The plans, which also include a residential development, will available to view at a public consultation at Preston Grasshoppers, on Lightfoot Lane, on November 10 between 5pm and 8pm.