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Green Belt Land to be released for Development

Land around Booker airfield to be released for development, what is the likelihood that this will include the training ground ?

Beeks and co set to do rather well ?



  • According to the trust letter issued last year... (TGF = Training Ground Funders -Beek's group)

    The Club’s ability to buy the facility back
    The TGF are committed to the goal of reselling the training ground back to the Club at the earliest opportunity subject to a mutually agreed financial consideration should the football club still require the facility. To be negotiated in future but the Group have a signed letter confirming the option.

    The intentions of the TGF
    The TGF objective isn’t, and never was, to derive unreasonable profits at the expense of the Club from this transaction but to support the above group of companies.

    In the event that the Club decides it did not require a training ground facility, perhaps because of artificial surface considerations at Adams Park, and the training ground was ultimately sold to a third party then the TGF would allocate a share of any potential profits being generated back to the Club. To be negotiated in future but the Group have a signed letter confirming the option.

  • Gonna need a G4 then??

  • Didn't they split up and the talented one go solo?

  • Nobody saw this coming.

  • Do Wycombe use it much.

  • I am shocked. Shocked I tell you. Shocked.

  • Similarly I am stunned at this news.

    I can't believe that the generous mystery buyers had any idea the land could be worth much and were acting entirely altruistically

  • Unfortunately it always comes down to money, allways difficult to fight against but if it does happen I hope the club gets a good deal out of it.

  • Didn't Mr S Hayes allegedly buy up large chunks of land up that way, in assumption of getting the Wasp-o-drome built?

  • The TGF are magnificent altruists to a (wo)man and to suggest otherwise shows a degree of cynicism that has no place in today's football. How anyone can come to the conclusion that they held the club to ransom in its hour of need, I will never know.

    I look forward to DevC coming along in a bit to show you all up for the negative conspiracy theorists that you are with a lengthy piece about yields and interest rates. And why they conclusively prove that 'Honest' Ivor Beeks is a stand-up guy.

  • @PBo The rumours I heard was that he was trying/had bought up land between Ragman's Lane and Clay Lane which would be needed to create an access route from Handy Cross to the proposed mega stadium that bypassed Cressex Road.

    Rumours had been swirling around the Booker and Claymoor Park neck of the woods for a while that the training ground is potentially to be developed - reports of WWFC looking at installing an artificial surface at AP, the Trust being forced into disposing of a distressed asset of the training ground to a consortium that contained at least one well-known local property developer, and of course a local planning authority under increasing pressure to fulfil government quotas on new builds have made some people wary about what might happen next.

    @brittanywanderer That's what a lot of people said about the campaign to stop Steve Hayes's plans, but the people up around Booker are good at putting a community campaign together if nothing else.

  • No great surprise that the land might turn out to be valuable. It's whether the club benefits from any profit (as promised in writing we're told) that needs monitoring.

  • disgrace loads of greenbelt being sold off because of the big demand on housing have to wonder how much we will have left in a few decades .

  • Well it was pretty obvious there would have been ulterior motives for buying the land when it became clear the buyers wanted to retain their anonymity. The long-term consequences of that decision will have to count towards the assessment of the stewardship of the Trust, particularly in its first epoch under Don Woodward.

    However, if - and it's a big if - the money released from the sale of the training ground for development provides enough money back to the club to purchase the field above Adams Park and convert it from a part-time carpark to a full time training facility, including 4G pitches to rent out when not in use - then I for one would consider it a very good bit of business and a gamble that paid off.

  • @aloysius
    Has any of that "Plan" come from club people, or is that your take on it?

    With parking pretty limited close the ground as it is, would they really look at taking that big carpark away, and have pitches on the top of a hill?

    Could you really see them renting club facilities out to randoms?

    I don't see it.

  • I can't source it but I'm pretty confident I've read about that being the plan before. I can certainly see them renting the facilities out if a 4G pitch is installed up there - that's how Barnet operate and it seems a pretty sensible model to me. As for the carpark - well there's enough space up there to build a more permanent structure, maybe multi-storey, if the club owned the land. But given they'd be without a training facility I'd say that's the more pressing concern than a few hundred cars paying a fiver (or so) each every couple of weeks.

  • Main pitch G4 perhaps? ChasHarps wouldn't like it though.

  • Barnet are fortunate to have hundreds of acres (?) of level land of course. And several hundred cars a couple of dozen times a year brings in enough to pay a decent player's wages.

  • i'm thinking less of the car income to be honest, as I expect most of that is hoovered up in rent.

    It's more the 250-300 or so cars that have to suddenly find somewhere else.
    I reckon it'd put a fair few people off bothering coming.

  • @aloysius Wasn't that the original plan when AP was built? WDC refused planning permission for any training pitch where the upper car park is now, be it plastic or grass without any floodlighting.

    (links courtesy of the excellent Chairboys archive at

  • Attitudes towards Green Belt land seem to have changed recently and I would have thought that the construction of a training pitch adjacent to the stadium would be less of a blot on the landscape and less of a strain on infrastructure, traffic congestion etc than a housing estate - if that is likely to be the outcome of opening up the training ground and surrounding area to development.
    By the way. What a plonker that Cllr Rogg seems to have been. "Practice" pitch indeed! But I'm damned sure Chelsea had a training pitch.

  • Thanks @ReadingMarginalista - pleased I wasn't making it up! I'm sure the burghers of WDC would be more accommodating now, especially if that was the quid pro quo for WWFC quietly evacuating the training ground and freeing up all that lovely greenbelt land for new development. In this scenario everyone wins: the club gets money and permission for a new training pitch at Adams Park, Beeks et al get their massive sell on for the land and the council get to meet govt targets. The only people that miss out are @Malone's drivers. Maybe part of the deal will be a better quality park and ride at Handy Cross. Problem solved!

  • Or a relatively unobtrusive low- level multi-storey car park like the excellent one at the new Leisure Centre.

  • Pretty sure nothing will ever be allowed to be built at AP which would reduce even by 10 the amount of car parking spaces available. It's bad enough as it is and the ground's safety certificate has already placed limitations on the attendance as a result of the access issues. Reduced car parking would only add to this further as it would mean more people using public transport, and more people walking up and down Hillbottom Road. For this reason, unless there was a suitable parking solution which was feasible, I don't see training pitches etc being built there. The sloped land would seem to cause problems too but I'm no expert on that.

    If they could build a multi storey car park that didn't take 2 hours to get out of, they could have a go at building a training ground and community pitches to hire. For me it's a non starter though, as Barnet's ground seems like it is in a much better location for this, with public transport links, no parking problems, lots of housing nearby and perhaps most importantly, many many pitches and a FULL gym, Starbucks etc. There has to be something to attract people to use the facilities as I don't think something that was only used as a WWFC training pitch would be of enough value to justify the necessary building work on levelling the ground and building carparks.

    Then you get on to whether or not a series of community 3G training pitches and a gym would compete with other facilities in the area. In terms of 3G pitches the area is lacking, with only astro turf style in the immediate vicinity. In terms of gyms though could an out of the way gym at AP really compete with the £12.99 p/m deals available in town?

    If anything were to be built, the most financially sound option would probably to 3G the existing pitch, use that during the week to train on and to hire out to the community, improve the car park a bit, and then maybe look at opening a retail outlet or two on site. Maybe a cinema, restaurant, McDonalds. I don't think this option would be particularly popular though! (Or would be allowed under current league rules)

  • Whilst it may be convenient for the Board to promote this to help achieve their ultimate aims there is no way Wycombe Wanderers Fans should accept a 3G option at Adams Park.

    Football should be played on grass. End of.

  • 3G pitches in the Football League are opposed by a majority of FL member clubs and by the PFA. Any argument for a 3G pitch at AP is irrelevant until that changes.

  • Forget 3G - it's old hat. 4G is the thing. It will need finance to filter down from the plutocrats astride the pyramid summit for lower league paupers to afford it but, if that were to happen, who knows? Pigs might fly of course.

  • 4G is the way to go. Sorry but the benefits out way the loss of grass.

  • There are no benefits as they are not permitted in the Football League

  • @FrijidPink No benefit at all in watching football on plastic. Might as well put roofs the stadiums on and call it a different sport altogether. It would be the end for me.

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