SWINDON Town are looking at two out-of-town options for a new training ground but owner Lee Power would much rather relocate to a base within the borough, should it become available.
Town are currently tenants of a facility at Liddington, which they share with activity centre PGL, but over recent years the pitches have become badly affected by adverse weather, while Power is keen to assimilate all aspects of the club – from the Football in the Community team right up to the senior squad – in one place.
However, the Robins’ appeals for a new training centre in Swindon have thus far fallen on deaf ears and, though they are currently looking outside the town, Power stressed that ideally he would not want to move too far away.
He told Link Sport: “We’ve put out a rallying cry. Everyone knows we need a new facility. We’ve knocked on a million doors, we’ve asked the council but nothing’s come up. I want the under eights, under nines, academy, Football in the Community all to be together because that’s what we’re trying to build here.
“I don’t want my kids training one side of the city, someone training down in Bristol, it’s no good. I want us all together because those kids who train, like Nathan (Thompson) used to, need to be able to look over to the main pitch like I used to as a kid and see the first team and want to aspire to that.
“Football in the Community do a fantastic job but they’re hardly ever at the football club – it’s not their fault, they’d like to be, but because of the way the club’s been set up it just breaks the club up. That’s no good, I’m trying to bring it together.
“To get a site costs a lot of money but it’s key to us. If it means having to move half an hour away we’ll do that. We don’t want to.
“They’re both outside of Swindon, the facilities we’re looking at. If someone’s got one inside Swindon I’d move heaven and earth to move there. We just haven’t been offered one.
“The places we’re looking at have pitches in place and that’s the major cost, it’s then the building so we can be based like a home. This is an old stadium, we’re sitting here with buckets of water, the roof is dripping. Really, this is only to be used for matchdays – it’s not that well equipped.
“We’d like to move to a new building where the lads can have the facilities they deserve. I’m happy to do that, it’s just finding that place.”