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Wealdstone FC have announced their first plans for a new 6,300-capacity football stadium at a site in Hillingdon.
Football Ground Guide here provides you with the latest on the new Wealdstone stadium in this regularly updated, fan-led guide…
New Wealdstone stadium: The key details
- The club are to move from the London Borough of Harrow into the London Borough of Hillingdon.
- Hillingdon borough have allocated Wealdstone an 18-acre site at Freezeland Way.
- Freezeland Way is next to the old Master Brewer Hotel in Hillingdon. The site is 2.7 miles from the current Wealdstone stadium in Ruislip.
- The new Wealdstone stadium will be situated right next to Hillingdon Underground Station.
- It will be accessible from central London in 35 minutes.
- The initial plans focus on a high-level experience for fans, players and officials.
- No timeline has been outlined yet, with further preliminary discussions required between the club, EFL and local councils.
Where will the new Wealdstone stadium be?
The new Wealdstone stadium will be at Freezeland Way on an 18-acre site. This means it will sit just next to Hillingdon Underground Station, which is itself accessible from central London in 40 minutes. This compares favourably to the current site at The Vale in Ruislip, which is a little further away. However, Ruislip has five tube stations nearby, as opposed to one for the new site.
For driving, meanwhile, Freezeland Way is helpfully just off the A40 and M25.
The new Wealdstone stadium will be situated 2.7 miles from The Vale, into which the Stones moved in 2008.
Wealdstone stadium history
After leaving their iconic Lower Mead ground in 1991, the Stones spent 17 years of nomadic wandering, ground-sharing with Watford, Yeading, Edgware and then Northwood.
In 2008 a number of Wealdstone directors took over the lease of Ruislip Manor Sports & Social Club in 2008, when its occupant Ruislip Manor FC folded, finally giving the Stones a permanent home at the tattered and peeling Grosvenor Vale Stadium.
In just a few months the ground was spruced up, partly rebuilt and ready for Ryman Premier League football. And over the next half-dozen years, work parties have added extra covered capacity behind both goals, extra steps around the whole stadium and even an electric scoreboard.
The ground is most notable for a unique feature in British football stadia: A towering concrete gun turret at its North East corner used to protect nearby Northolt Aerodrome from German bombing during World War II. Nowadays, although brightly painted in white & blue like the rest of the stadium, it is slightly overshadowed by the ‘Couch Corner’ stand at that end of the ground, named after former club statistician Roy Couch, which is a section of covered terracing.
In 2017, a six row covered seated stand, with a capacity of 360 seats, was put in place at that end next to Crouch Corner, which is the newest addition to the Vale. The stand looks a little odd as although it is level, the pitch in front slopes down from left to right. Plus it does not run the full width of the pitch. It does have some supporting pillars, running along the front of it, that could impede your view.
How big will the new Wealdstone stadium be?
The new stadium will have a capacity of 6,300. Their current home holds only 4,000.
What will be included at the new Wealdstone stadium?
Expect administrative offices, training, retail, catering, media, hospitality and leisure facilities, plus a community hall, café, communal garden, play area and outside gym.
“Fantastic news,” says Wealdstone chairman
Rory Fitzgerald, chairman of Wealdstone, called the update “fantastic news not only for our fans and players but the whole local community.”
He thanked the London Borough of Hillingdon for allocating the club the plot of land after “a long period of discussion and negotiation.”
Fitzgerald emphasised the “security and growth potential” offered by a new Wealdstone stadium as the club hopes to “attract the investment we need to realise our ambition of one day playing in the EFL.”
How will Wealdstone pay for their new stadium?
Developing residential units and commercial floorspace in the area around the ground will help raise funds.
Fan reaction to new Wealdstone stadium
Wealdstone fans are delighted, and so are fans across the non-league pyramid. It's a really positive sign to see a community club such as this one benefit from a decision like this. We certainly wish Wealdstone all the best with the move!