Leicester City’s plans on track despite owner’s death



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Leicester City training ground - update Image: KSS

Leicester City Football Club’s (LCFC) ambitious plans to create Europe’s best football training ground is on track despite the tragic death of owner in a helicopter crash outside the club’s stadium on Oct. 27.

Thai billionaire Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha was among five people killed when his private chopper spiraled out of control and plummeted into the empty carpark, after taking off from inside the King Power stadium.

The tycoon’s son Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha, who’s likely to take charge as the chairman of King Power soon, is expected to carry on with the club’s future plans.

The accidental death came just weeks after LCFC’s ambition to create Europe’s best football training ground took a massive step forward with the club securing planning permission to turn the 185-acre Park Hill Golf and Fishing Center into a sprawling £100 million complex where the first team squad will practice, local media reported.

Members of Charnwood Borough Council’s planning committee met in Loughborough to debate the Foxes’ plans to relocate from their current training base at Aylestone in the city. After a two hour and 20 minute discussion they voted by eight to four to approve the ambitious project, according to leicestersmercury.co.uk.

Key components of the masterplan include 12 full-size pitches, together with various smaller pitches and targeted outdoor training areas, including a full-size indoor pitch within a signature building that moulds into the landscape and forms a centre point to the masterplan.

Additionally, a fully integrated training facility building for the academy and first team players, incorporating medical, tactical, training and dining facilities will be built.

A Sports Turf Academy, which will train the next generation of elite groundsmen / women, and a show pitch with a 499-seat stand to allow under-23s and U18s to play in a ‘match environment’ will open.

Designs drawn up by architects KSS, the plans have been sensitively developed with a full understanding of the existing site context and consideration of the impacts of development on key neighbours.

Construction company McLaren is understood to have won the contract to build the new £120 million facility.

The masterplan has been developed to deliver a best-in-class football training facility to accommodate LCFC’s academy and First team players.

The facility seeks to combine best practice in elite sports training with a celebration of LCFC’s culture and ethos.

The proposals also seek to enhance the characteristics of the site and will generate a net increase in biodiversity across the area including the creation of 17 new wildlife and attenuation ponds with a total area of 9,400 sqm.

Over 38,000 new trees will be planted to enhance 11.23 hectares retained woodland and create 4.41 hectares new broadleaved plantation, and improvement of retained Local Wildlife Site and creation of 14.59 hectares wildflower grassland.

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