Sheffield FC: World's oldest football club ready to submit 5,000-seater stadium plans next month

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The venue, which would also be home to Sheffield Eagles, could open as early as September 2025

The world's oldest football club is set to submit plans next month for its long-awaited return to Sheffield, at a new 5,000-seater stadium.

Sheffield FC began life in the Steel City back in 1857 but in recent years has been based just outside the city limits, in Dronfield, North East Derbyshire.

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How Sheffield FC's proposed new stadium, just off Meadowhead Roundabout, which it would share with Sheffield Eagles, would lookHow Sheffield FC's proposed new stadium, just off Meadowhead Roundabout, which it would share with Sheffield Eagles, would look
How Sheffield FC's proposed new stadium, just off Meadowhead Roundabout, which it would share with Sheffield Eagles, would look | Sheffield FC/Sheffield Eagles

It hopes to return to its spiritual home in time for the 2025/26 season in a new stadium at the Sheffield Transport Sports Club site, just off Meadowhead Roundabout, which it would share with the Sheffield Eagles rugby league club.

Facilities would be available for local community to use

As well as hosting professional football and rugby league matches, the new stadium would include a football museum to help cement Sheffield's place as the home of football.

There would also be a cricket pitch and pavilion, a football training pitch and an indoor community sports hall, among other facilities.

Sheffield FC's chairman Richard Tims told The Star the club is on course to submit its planning application to Sheffield City Council in the first week of February.

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Sheffield FC chairman Richard TimsSheffield FC chairman Richard Tims
Sheffield FC chairman Richard Tims | National World

He said the public reaction to the plans had been overwhelmingly positive, with many people excited about the historic club's overdue return to its native city.

He acknowledged there had been some concerns raised by local residents about the extra traffic but he said this would be nowhere near as bad as many people feared.

'We're not building Real Madrid's stadium'

And he said people living nearby would benefit most from the new facilities, including the training pitch and sports hall which would be available to hire, a new cafe and the 'nice' grounds they would be able to walk around.

"I think some people are expecting it to be 5,000 people every week but that's not the case because we're a non-league team and Sheffield Eagles are a Sunday afternoon rugby club," Mr Tims told The Star.

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"During the week it will be very much a community hub. There will be a football pitch for hire, the indoor hall will be available for sports like wheelchair rugby, badminton and netball, there will be nice grounds to walk around and there will be a cafe.

"That field's dilapidated and the facilities there now are collapsing so something has to happen and we feel these new facilities are the best thing that can happen. Traffic's a necessary evil but we're not building Real Madrid's stadium there."

Mr Tims said the club would be submitting plans for housing on its current site in Dronfield, which it hopes will help fund the new stadium, to North East Derbyshire District Council at the same time as it submits the application for the Meadowhead site to Sheffield City Council.

He acknowledged that some people were keen for a football museum to be created in Sheffield city centre.

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But he described Sheffield FC as the 'jewel in the crown' when it comes to the city's sporting heritage and argued that the bid to attract more football tourists should be centred around the club.

Mr Tims has previously described the planned move to a larger 'world-class facility' as the dawn of a 'new era' for Sheffield FC and one which would 'once and for all put Sheffield sport well and truly on the map'.

Sheffield Eagles, who currently play at the Olympic Legacy Park in Attercliffe, have said the new stadium would help the club achieve its goal of a return to the top flight.

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