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Stadium Development

The new rec?

By CoochieCoo
January 12 2018

COML has been invited to join with other groups to give input into the development of the Rec. I have agreed with Hasta and PG Tips to represent COML on these meetings which are monthly. The meetings are for a communication line between us and the Club and vice versa.

In order that we can be heard and be able to participate effectively I would appreciate your views on aspects of the development that are important to you. Please respond on this thread. I suggest that comments on the following subjects in line with the Club's document "Exploring The Opportunity" be a starting point, but not exhaustive:

1. Design - Heritage aspects (visual of stadium,views of surrounds, height), Daylight (influence on playing surface, sun etc), Floodlighting, Sound systems, Infrastructure and Facilties (toilets, drainage), Sustainability (energy efficient, materials), Technology (TV screen, clocks, WiFi)

2. Environment - Riverside, Access, Trees, Flooding, 

3. Transport and Access - Pedestrian Access, P&R, Train, Buses, Accessibility,

4. Matchday Experience - Seat views, Roof cover, TV Screens and PA, Toilets, Bars, Restaurants, Eating Outlets, Pricing, Stewards

5. Community, Sporting Participation and Well Being - Artificial surface, grass, ability to be used for other activities, conference facilities, function restaurant & bar, 

6. Economic Impact - Multi purpose, Winter impact on Bath economy, 

7. Accessibility - Food outlets, Bars, accesibility issues, stairs, gangways.

Thank you

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Stadium Development
12/01/2018 18:21
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Awp24975 (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
13/01/2018 09:22
A roof for the terrace is all I want please (although last night would be deafening with a roof the amount of noise the Scarlets made!!)

P G Tips
P G Tips (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
15/01/2018 15:57

My thoughts:

1. Design –

• Modern design (not Georgian pastiche) but in keeping- using Bath stone where appropriate
• Roofing only for spectator comfort-allowing maximum daylight on playing area
• Height & profile not to obscure view of Abbey from south or Sham Castle from Abbey
• WiFi)

2. Environment –
• landscape riverside including trees & shrubs
• Ensure view over river is maintained
• Include bars & restaurants in west stand with view of river

3. Transport and Access -
• Wheelchair accessibility at all gates
• Wheelchair area on each side of pitch - in stand accessible by ramp
• Bicycle racks

4. Matchday Experience –
• All seats to be able to see all sides of pitch, plus local landmarks (i.e.
• Abbey, Sham Castle) within current views
• TV screen to be visible from all areas of ground
• Audible PA system that works regularly

5. Community,
• A music venue (summer time)
• Use (as now) for significant amateur rugby events – Combination Final etc.
Available for other sports in off season (within limits of pitch maintenance
• Education – consider educational tours to describe the architectural, structural and engineering approach & how it was achieved.
• Summer use by charities – e.g local underprivileged or handicapped children
• Available for other sports in off season (within limits of pitch maintenance)

6. Economic Impact -
• Music venue
• Conference facilities
• Gym facilities/squash courts?


Tall Paul (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
16/01/2018 19:19
As someone that lives too far away for a day trip, I tend to come with my brother and sister in law to matches and make a weekend of it.

For me the biggest improvement would be a roof. Having got soaked through to the skin on more than one occasion, it really takes away from the enjoyment of the entire weekend. I also think it would benefit the atmosphere. Though I hate to say it, the Shed is world famous, and living in Leeds for 10 years, the South Stand at Headingley is just as infamous in RL circles. I have seen the roof credited with adding to the atmosphere of both of these stands, and it is rare that the Rec is complimented in the same way. And I don't believe for one second that it is down to us fans!

Aside from a roof, and at the risk of being controversial, I would like a plastic pitch. I know that historically we have not done so well on them, but in my opinion they encourage a more open, running style play and that is more likely to make me want to come to the city to watch. We already practice on half of one and enough other teams use them now to make them not too strange.

Matt Garvey- proudly adopted for 2017-18

hasta (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
16/01/2018 19:20
I would love a plastic pitch, but suspect we won't have a chance.

CoochieCoo (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
16/01/2018 19:28
Thank you all, please keep it coming. It would be nice to know that the COML voice is loud and influential.

Hasta, I understand that all options are on the table. Plastic pitches I think are not so much a planning issue but a Trustees permission issue.

Rawce (IP Logged)

Re: Stadium Development
16/01/2018 23:04
Borrowed from TG Pips’ format.

1. Design -
• TBH, I’d be happy with Georgian pastiche, but maybe a better detail than SouthGate. I’d be happy for columns all the way along the riverside frontage, even up to the slope (so long as the trees get relocated) as that would give a maximised terrace for cafes, conference, whatever.
• Roof all the way round, with light fittings attached so no poles up high and getting in the way of the view. No need for a steep rake to keep sight lines/height to a minimum. Maybe glass at the rear for some connectivity to the green hilled views.
• Happy to play up to the Roman theme if it gives a sense of identity. Agree not to everyone’s taste, but I worry today’s modern is tomorrow’s Sports Centre.
• If possible, incorporate the Sports Centre under the stands and build the conferencing/hotel facilities where the spots centre is (bar the pool). I know it’d be a shame to waste the recent investment, but it’s a good opportunity to replace the central eyesore into something more sympathetic.
• East Stand should split in two and rotate outfield by pivoting at the north east and south east corners opening up a huge seating area onto the majority of the Rec, possibly enabling cricket to be played on there. The stand to be named after me, with my current mood projected as a giant avatar at the back of the stand showing my elation (thumbs up or barely persceptible nod) or displeasure (Brexiteer on question time shades of purple) depending upon how the team are playing. My booming voice over the PA exhorting more grunt punching and/or punch grunting whether a game is being played or not. If this is too much of an engineering feat, then I want the Rec completely flat with a buried stadium that Thunderbirds 200m up into the air, hovering on jets or up to 12 tethered drones from Argos. I’m pretty sure I saw this in a Mario game on the Wii, so it can clearly be done.

2. Environment –
• Landscape riverside including trees & shrubs where possible, and enhance the entrances. Living roof?
• Hybrid pitch to improve resilience. I think a plastic pitch may not be ideal for such a culturally sensitive area, though would benefit the community and usage much more. The latest organic infill ones may prove the best of the lot though.
• Non-game rooftop tours for a great view and revenue.

3. Transport and Access -
• Set down and pick up shuttle buses from the P&Rs, maybe for those of limited mobility from the train station. Using injured players as drivers should mean we are able to put on 20+ coaches each game.
• Better security, bollard protection, etc. for what will be a big crowd in a small area.
• Sensible gate entry. Friends 4 rows from me have to use the Sports Centre Gate, me the William Street. A bit of flexilibility (middle third of seats in a stand can use either entrance) or the ability to nominate a second entrance would make life easier for quite a few supporters I reckon.

4. Matchday Experience –
• Seat spacing suitable for adult use. I know I’ve put on weight over Christmas, but there’s still only one of me in that seat.
• TV screen to be visible from all areas of ground.
• Audible PA system that works regularly.
• Enhanced bladder capacity for those who sit on my row.
• Enough facilities or swifter pay/delivery mechanisms so we can do a minimum of two out of loo, bar or food instead of picking our most favourite/desperate.
• Better beer. I like a decent pint of Bath Ales. What is served is not a decent pint. I know it’s keg, but coupling it with a plastic cup makes it taste far away from what it should be. I know there are logistics involved with serving a decent ale, but it makes me not want to drink at the Rec. Maybe consider getting some local craft beer in which is far better matched to keg. Bath Ales’ own Beerd have an ok range, better still get Electric Bear or Kettlesmith in. There are plenty of phenomenal breweries in Bristol too. Indie Spirit should have a stand in there. Also consider serving it in those cans where the whole of the top can be ring pulled off. No pour time, much less of a projectile. Can provide an example if you need.

5. Community -
• What Tetley said.
• Consider Bath City playing there for their big games. Ken Loach’s ticket to mysteriously disintegrate into dust when presented at the gate.
• Incorporate a multi function clubhouse that meets the aspirations of All Sports For All.

6. Economic Impact -
• Music venue - either as a building or enable open air in the stadium (I still want Metallica opening the place as a nice hello to all three of the antis).
• Hotel. Not sure on this one, if its even a consideration. If there’s too much commercial stuff, and IF Bath Rugby Stadiums Offshore Limited are paying a smaller rent than we’d have got from a private landlord, then the development wouldn’t sit right with me. Perhaps the trust could be gifted ownership of any hotel and manage the revenues to maintain funding. Perhaps too much commercial risk though. I just don’t want us to be getting away with exploiting prime land for Primark prices or all our campaigning about community has been for nought.

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