Plans approved for new supporter stands at South Shields FC as club looks to future

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Proposals for new supporter stands at the home of South Shields Football Club have been given the go-ahead by planning chiefs.

Earlier in 2021, a planning application was lodged with South Tyneside Council to redevelop part of the 1st Cloud Arena off Shaftesbury Avenue.

Club officials applied to erect two new supporter stands with a total of 1,402 seats to replace a number of existing covered supporter standing and seating areas.

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New plans included a 902-seat stand along the Shaftesbury Avenue side of the ground and a new 500-seat stand to the west of the primary pitch and adjacent to the 3G pitch.

Plans have been approved for improved seating at the 1st Cloud Arena.Plans have been approved for improved seating at the 1st Cloud Arena.
Plans have been approved for improved seating at the 1st Cloud Arena.

According to documents submitted to the borough council, the application represented an increase of 102 to the existing total ground capacity.

However, the club does not intend to build the 500-seat stand within the next 12 months and plans to “further assess the immediate viability of this part of the project over the next year.”

After considering all representations, South Tyneside Council’s planning department approved the football club’s application on May 12, 2021.

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Planners also responded to an objector who said the development could lead to noise and disruption for residents along Salcombe Avenue.

The council report reads: “The works to provide new covered seating are designed to improve the existing facilities at the ground and would replace existing stands along the southern and western boundaries of the football pitch.

“The council’s environmental health officer was consulted and has assessed the application in terms of the potential impact on residential amenity, with particular regard to noise generation; as well as having regard to the concerns raised in the objection.

“The officer highlights the fact that the application would only create an additional capacity of 102 people, which, in terms of the overall existing capacity of 3,450, is considered to be a very small increase.”

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The planning application was also endorsed by Sport England and the council’s traffic and road safety department.

In the decision report, council officers added that the extra traffic generated from the development could be “satisfactorily accommodated by existing local on-street [parking] provision.”

South Shields FC have has welcomed the planning decision.

A club spokesperson said: “We are very pleased to have received planning permission for the next stage of our development of 1st Cloud Arena.

“Work will now begin on the erection of our new stand on the Shaftesbury Avenue side of the ground, which will be able to seat more than 900 spectators, and we are greatly excited to now see these plans come to fruition.

“If all continues to go to plan, the stand will be operational in time for the start of the 2021-22 season.

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“Permission has also been received for the build of another new stand, to be positioned behind the goal adjacent to the 3G pitch, but the club must stress that it does not intend for this to be built within the next 12 months, and submitted it as part of its plans to allow it to further assess the immediate viability of this part of the project over the next year.

“The club would like to thank South Tyneside Council for their support of the project and we look forward to welcoming supporters back to a new-look 1st Cloud Arena as soon as possible.”

The club also confirmed the 2021 planning application for supporter stands supersedes a 2019 application for a new supporter stand, community hub and multi-use sports hall.

For more information on South Shields FC’s new plans, visit South Tyneside Council’s planning portal and search planning reference: ST/0101/21/FUL

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