‘We’ve made a big step’ - Full steam ahead for Norwich City’s training ground facelift

The Canaries' bond will build a state-of-the-art academy. Picture: Denise Bradley

The Canaries' bond will build a state-of-the-art academy. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

Building work is progressing ahead of schedule at Colney as Norwich City's training facilities are revamped.

The Canaries launched an innovative bond scheme earlier this year which offered investors a favourable rate of return and subsequently hit its £5million threshold.

The money is being used to make sure the club's academy can maintain category one status, with new buildings replacing the current temporary structures, providing changing rooms, office space and state-of-the-art gym facilities which will also benefit the first team.

'We've made some pretty good progression,' said sporting director Stuart Webber. 'We've finished (levelling) the pitches down the far end over the summer, so they'll be ready to be used in September.

'The building, the second floor is about to be started, so we're ahead of schedule. The plan was always to finish in June 2020, give or take. We think that could come in to the back end of next year, depending on what the winter is like weather-wise.

'But generally we have made some really good progress with not only the academy bond but Colney in general.'

Floodlights have already been added to the main Colney pitch so that more under-23 games can be hosted at the training ground, with spectator facilities to follow.

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Webber continued: 'We've re-done the first team canteen to try and make a step change because one of the things we talked about last season as a club was about creating elite environments, creating high performance culture.

'You've got to back that up as a club, not just talk about it to players and staff and actually do nothing to invest in them in terms of their facilities and their careers.

'So we've made a big step this summer and I think when the players came back in from their break they thought 'oh wow, this is a change'.

'It's a step change and that was important for us but that doesn't stop here, it's how do we do even more within the financial constraints because saying we don't have any money and spending a fortune on the training ground, we appreciate we have to do it our way and make it efficient rather than luxurious for us.'