Brighton & Hove Albion executive director and chair of Albion in the Community, Martin Perry, is delighted that planning permission has been granted by Adur District Council to extend the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre.
A total of £22million will be invested at the training ground, which will include new improved sports science facilities for the first-team squad, a ‘Club Hub’ facility for Albion in the Community and the Albion’s women’s and girls’ programme, and three additional pitches and training grids.
Adur District Council’s Planning Committee approved these plans on Monday, and Perry highlighted the clear benefits of the development.
He said, “The approval of these plans is fantastic news for both the club and Albion in the Community.
“The plans represent a further investment by the club of £22 million in new facilities at the training ground, including a further £1 million in the facilities adjacent to the community pitch, allowing the club’s charity to undertake even more of the brilliant work they do across Lancing and Adur District.
“This is also incredibly exciting news for our women’s and girls’ programme, as it allows Hope Powell and her team to have a dedicated facility on site to cater for the senior players, and for our younger players coming through our Regional Talent Club.
“It further demonstrates our commitment to creating an elite environment for everyone at the football club.”
Councillor Neil Parkin, Leader of Adur District Council, also praised the club for its ongoing work within the local area, in light of this news.
“I am pleased to see Albion continue their investment in Lancing and the wider District. This is a Premier League investment by a Premier League club which will create world-class accessible facilities for footballers across Sussex.
“Albion have shown that they are committed to investing in our community and I look forward to continuing to work this partnership for many years to come.”
Meanwhile, Councillor Carol Albury, Chairman of Adur District Council’s Planning Committee, is pleased that the development will allow the club’s women’s and girls’ programme to go from strength to strength.
“The Albion training ground has been a welcome addition to Lancing and over the years there has been a steady growth in the use of the community pitch.
“The committee took into consideration the concerns of neighbours but on balance felt this investment in world-class sporting facilities was the right decision. Personally I’m delighted to see that this investment will support the growth of the women’s game and I hope this will allow Albion to remain a Women’s Super League club for many years to come.”
Albion Women’s first-team manager Hope Powell spoke about how the development will improve the prospects of all players within the women's and girls' programme, and added, “The opportunity to build a new facility at the club’s training ground is not only beneficial to the women’s game, but also for the wider community through AITC too.
“It will allow all players from a grassroots and professional level to be in one place, allowing even more aspiring footballers to fulfil their potential.
“It shows just how ambitious the club is in creating an elite environment for both the men’s and women’s players, the enthusiastic support by Adur Council encouraging the development of Women & Girls Football at Lancing is fantastic news.”