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Final approval for Saracens' stadium vision

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Saracens rugby union team has secured final approval for the proposed multi-million pound redevelopment of London's Copthall Stadium from communities secretary Eric Pickles.

The Aviva Premiership team's vision for Copthall Stadium was backed by Barnet Council's planning and environment committee in February, with the scheme expected to cost £18m.

Both the national governing bodies for athletics and rugby union have given their support to the proposals, which will include new permanent facilities and the installation of temporary seating.

Saracens said it will play up to 16 matches a year on a synthetic pitch at the stadium, while the venue will also be available to Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers athletics club and the local community.

The current main building to the west of the venue will be redeveloped and a new permanent stand will be constructed to the east for use by athletics and rugby union spectators.

Saracens chair Nigel Wray said: "The comprehensive sporting and community benefits of our proposals have been recognised at every stage of the decision making process.

"We have engaged with local residents throughout the life of this project and we will continue to do so as we move forward."

Details: www.saracens.com

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Saracens rugby union team has secured final approval for the proposed multi-million pound redevelopment of London's Copthall Stadium from communities secretary Eric Pickles.
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