Residents' fears over major expansion plans for Warminster Road sports ground

Residents living close to a planned new floodlit football pitch with room for 150 spectators have hit out at the University of Sheffield proposals.

Monday, 9th May 2016, 12:55 pm
Updated Monday, 9th May 2016, 1:00 pm
The Warminster Road sporting facilities in Norton Lees are earmarked for expansion

Planning permission is being sought to build an artificial 3G sports pitch suitable for rugby and football which will be surrounded by eight 15m-high floodlights and the building of a new car park with 149 spaces as part of an expansion of its Warminster Road sports facilities in Norton Lees.

A covered spectator terrace would also be created under the plans, with space for up to 150 people to watch matches.

A statement supporting the application said: “It is the university’s aspiration to provide a high-quality facility able to meet the needs of its own sports teams and that of the surrounding community.”

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But concerns have been raised by people living close to the site. Nick Robinson said the plans would create extra noise for those living nearby.

He added: “Fifteen new floodlights which will impact greatly on the peace, quiet and darkness we currently enjoy in the evening. The university has already expanded facilities on this land and we worry that this development will simply encourage them to add even more lighting and parking spaces - there simply isn’t enough access for the current level of cars and people.

“These playing fields are a wonderful facility as they are, without further commercial development, which is totally out of place in a quiet residential area.”

Anthony Mills said there are already parking problems with the site, especially at weekends.

He said: “I am also concerned about noise disturbances if the playing fields and pitches are open till 10pm and therefore ongoing transport will still be going on for at least half an hour after the final match; there are many elderly residents on Warminster Road and it will disturb their quality of life as much of them prefer to go to bed earlier.”

Robert Scott added: “The addition of extra facilities and particularly a spectator area for 150 people will substantially increase the traffic and congestion in the area. Local residents already suffer extreme inconvenience with vehicles and coaches parking across driveways and pavements.

“Inconsiderate parking is a long-standing problem on Warminster Road and it is a problem created solely by users of the sports facility.”

Sheffield Council will rule on the application in June.