Norwich Rugby Club reveals plans for its move to the University of East Anglia

09:33 10 February 2016

Norwich in action in last season

Norwich in action in last season's victory over Rochford Hundred.


Norwich Rugby Club has submitted a formal application for planning permission which would see it move into a new home at the University of East Anglia.

Artist's plan for the new home of Norwich Rugby Club. Picture: SuppliedArtist's plan for the new home of Norwich Rugby Club. Picture: Supplied

As reported in November, the club chose the Colney Lane site after searching for a new home, as it sold its current base at Beeston Hyrne, near Spixworth, to a housing developer.

The planning application for the new location, near the Norwich Research Park and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, was submitted jointly with the UEA to South Norfolk Council.

The plans include new sports pitches, with an artificial grass pitch that has fencing and floodlighting, a new pavilion/club house, which would include a café, changing room, club room and bar, and a 284-space car park.

Club secretary Andy Pott said: “This is by far the best site. It has an infrastructure that’s already there, and is already largely playing fields. The main benefits of the scheme are that we would have somewhere to relocate to, and UEA would, for the first time, be able to have quality changing and social facilities on their playing fields.”

Norwich Rugby Club HQ Beeston Hyrne. Date: 1970s. Picture: EDP LibraryNorwich Rugby Club HQ Beeston Hyrne. Date: 1970s. Picture: EDP Library

The proposals said that the new pavilion and clubhouse would provide “a linking point” for the UEA, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and the Norwich Research Park.

One planning document added: “The club needs to secure a sustainable future which, after examining numerous other possible sites, they consider is best achieved by locating to the Colney Playing Fields and establishing a close link with the UEA.

“Many large sports clubs and their local universities are developing shared facilities in order to jointly improve the sustainability of their sporting offer.”

It said the UEA recognised the option would be a “good fit”, that would “significantly improve and enrich the student experience”, and added: “The new clubhouse/pavilion will also provide an important link between the university’s main campus and its facilities to the west of the Yare Valley and the wider Norwich Research Park.”

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