Ilkeston Town's owners unveil ambitious plans for the New Manor Ground
The consortium behind the recent purchase of Ilkeston Town FC have unveiled their plans for the future of the club's ground.
Head coach Mark Clifford and his two main investors, the identity of whom is yet to be officially revealed, were at a meeting with the club's supporters on Wednesday night where they showed off huge plans to redevelop the New Manor Ground, which will include rebuilding all four sides of the ground and the installation of a 4G pitch.
The new owners say they are aiming to ensure a sustainable future for the football club by investing heavily into a facility that will serve not only as a home for the Robins, but also provide valuable income from functions and business use.
The plans also revealed a desire to convert green belt land adjacent to the New Manor Ground into a large car park, and also the introduction of a new club crest.
A statement released by the club on Thursday read: "Mark Clifford has made it clear, that along with his backers, efforts will be made to bring self sustainability to the club, ensuring the club is around for our children and our children's children.
"The business model itself will incorporate a full new re-brand of the club, creating a professional look, whilst also embedding important parts of both the club's and town's history within it.
"The plan also will involve major re-developments around the stadium along with a new 4G playing surface. This will limit disruptions to the playing schedule, whilst also creating a significant income stream.
"There will also be new energy efficient LED floodlight system, a new full-time sports bar, excellent corporate hospitality and function areas and new changing rooms.
"The existing clock tower stand will remain and become offices for the staff of Ilkeston Town FC and a new club shop.
"There are also discussions currently ongoing into the possibility of pitch side LED advertising to replace the boards currently being offered.
"The industrial and office units that will be located around the exterior of the New Manor Ground will bring in large rental incomes, which will also go towards the running the club.
"The playing side shall not be affected in anyway and the club are always looking for ways to improve the squad and progress through the league pyramid but in doing so will NOT jeopardise the stability of the club moving forward.
"Everyone at Ilkeston Town FC is confident that the club will now be run as a business (soon to be profitable) and that the large investments coming in will be spent creating something special that will stand the test of time.
"We would like to confirm that the club aim to use local businesses and supporters in the day to day running of the club wherever possible and we will be working side by side with both the Junior section and ladies team in order to create one big family.
"We are also implementing plans to introduce an Academy to the club in the not to distant future.
"A committee will soon be in place and we would like the supporters to be a part of this."
See the video above for the plans being put in place at the New Manor Ground.