Work getting underway at Horsham Football Club's new ground brings buzz of excitement

Ten years since leaving Queen Street and a year since securing planning permission for a new home, Horsham chief executive John Lines has said that work getting underway on their ground has brought a buzz of excitement.

There has been 12 months of paperwork since a football ground for the Hornets next to Horsham Golf and Fitness was approved by Horsham District Council last March, alongside enabling development of 58 homes on sports pitches next to the Holbrook Club.

Ground work taking place at the site of Horsham Football Club's new ground at Horsham Golf and Fitness. Picture by Steve Robards. SR1806811.

Ground work taking place at the site of Horsham Football Club's new ground at Horsham Golf and Fitness. Picture by Steve Robards. SR1806811.

It was third time lucky for the club after two previous applications for a new home, first at the Holbrook Club, and then on the current site, off Worthing Road, were both refused by the council.

The Hornets have been homeless since leaving Queen Street in 2008 and after a year of nomadic existence playing down in Worthing, they relocated to Gorings Mead to groundshare with previous neighbours Horsham YMCA.

That share lasted eight years until 2017 and the club are now playing at the Sussex FA headquarters in Lancing, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Archaeological research has taken place along with ecology work, netting has been put in place around the golf course's driving range, the site has been cleared and some early ground works taken place.

Writing on the club's website, Lines updated fans by confirming progress had been made in the past few weeks on the site with the car park next to be laid and then the tricky job of leveling ground.

He said: "All this has transformed the landscape at our site and where we can now move on to start a new era for Horsham Football Club. What has happened is remarkable in such a short space of time and it sparks the imagination into thinking just how exciting this new home for the club is going to be.

"We are currently in the hands of Horsham District Council, who will check that we have correctly completed all of the pre-commencement conditions set out in the planning consent and section 106 Notice and are ready to go with the business end of the project.

"The next item on the agenda will be to lay the foundations for the car park which will double as the contractors’ compound during the construction process.

"Once that has been done, work to level the ground for both pitches will begin. There is an awful lot of cut and fill to do, shifting soil from one area to the other to get levels balanced without having to take lorry loads off site for disposal.

"This is a very technical and detailed exercise to ensure the base of the pitches are perfect for accepting the final 3G carpet."