Accrington Stanley have set a tentative date of moving into a new stadium by the 2014-15 season.
Stanley have played at the Crown Ground for more than 40 years but are realistic that their current home does not have the facilities to match most of their Football League rivals and also limits their ability to bring in income on matchdays.
Chairman Ilyas Khan, who completed his takeover of Stanley in April, is keen to move the Reds away from the Crown Ground and into a more modern facility as the club bid to trade more profitably in the years to come.
The club estimate that a new stadium could cost between £6m and £7m, with Khan prepared to donate £2m to help fund it.
Stanley are considering the viability of a possible site in the vicinity of Hyndburn Sports Centre in Henry Street.
The location is less than a mile from Accrington town centre on the main road to the M65, the former Arnold Clark car superstore closed there last year.
The Reds say they have discussed the site with council figures and are contemplating whether to include a hotel, conference facility and restaurant in any potential development, as well as other sporting facilities.
The Reds have struggled to break even in recent seasons and Khan is putting new plans in place to make Stanley more profitable, meaning £2m can go towards the stadium rather than paying off club debts.
Stanley hope to raise £1m from a planned share issue, which is due to take place at the end of this month.
Shares will cost £100 each and 2,000 will initially be made available to the public, a figure due to rise to 9,999 over the next two years.
A total of 2,000 £1 ‘A’ shares are currently in existence along with 9,800 £10 ‘B’ shares.
Khan’s TW Indus company has a 43.5 per cent stake with David Styring owning 14.6 per cent, while the Accrington Stanley Supporters’ Fund has 12.1 per cent and club president Peter Marsden’s Property Finance business has 10 per cent.
The club hope that total of around 80 per cent will be reduced to 20 per cent following the share issue and the Reds are keen to avoid any one person holding a majority shareholding in the future, with the aim to instead become a community-owned club.
“What fantastic news for the town” says Greengates Builders Merchants Accrington, Lancashire