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Bath Rugby stadium plans back on track

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Plans to build a new rugby stadium on the historic Recreation Ground site in Bath, Somerset are back on track following the overturning of a court order which would have limited the size of the development.

The Recreation Ground Trust (RGT) – which owns the land – was successful in its appeal to the Upper Tribunal against a previous decision which prevented it from leasing a larger footprint of "the Rec" to Bath Rugby.

In a statement, RGT said the decision will mean the stadium plans can now move to the next step.

“The trustees would like to thank the tribunal for the clarity of their judgement on this complex issue and for the guidance offered on the next steps required,” the statement said.

“The appeal addressed a specific point of law around the status of the Recreation Ground and the judgement has clarified that in essence the land is to be used as a recreation ground for the public at large and can be managed by the trustees in a manner that will further this charitable objective.”

RGT is looking to lease more land to Bath Rugby than it currently occupies, paving the way for a larger rugby stadium with a capacity of about 16,500.

The Recreation Ground stadium currently has a maximum capacity of 14,000. Bath Rugby’s average home attendance was 13,171 in 2014-15.

A spokesperson for Bath Rugby said the stadium project is at the heart of the club’s future plans.

“The Rec is the spiritual and historic home of Bath Rugby, with the Club having played here since 1894,” he said.

The current facilities at the Rec, however, are crying out for improvement. The current buildings are no longer fit for purpose, falling well below what our supporters want and what Premiership and international Rugby standards demand.

In addition, their appearance is far from in keeping with the ground’s riverside setting and Bath’s World Heritage status.”

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Plans to build a new rugby stadium on the historic Recreation Ground site in Bath are back on track following the overturning of a court order which would have limited the size of the development.
SAR
The Recreation Ground stadium currently has a maximum capacity of 14,000
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