The Club’s New Stadium team has been engaging with various groups, including supporters, in recent weeks by holding feedback sessions on our proposed new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock and the Goodison Legacy Project.
I’ve had the privilege of being part of most of these workshops and the level of ideas, feedback and support for the project has been both impressive and hugely useful.
The sessions were attended by a wide range of groups including the Everton Disabled Supporters’ Association (EDSA), Everton Heritage Society and the Everton Shareholders’ Association, as well as representatives from many of our Supporters’ Clubs and the Fans’ Forum. These sessions are the latest in a series of engagement activities that have been ongoing since our initial fan surveys and the subsequent announcement of our ‘Key Principles’ for a new stadium for Everton Football Club.
Ahead of the second stage public consultation next month, the sessions allowed us to explore in a focus-group environment, matters including the matchday experience at the new stadium and topics such as rail seating/safe standing, transport, heritage and accessibility.
Our project architect, Dan Meis, has consistently spoken about how a new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock should reflect the impressive location of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, while contributing to the maritime and dockland surroundings. There is a lot of material and architectural inspiration in that area to consider and that will allow us to look to create something unique yet respectful of its environment.
At the moment, Bramley-Moore Dock is not open to the public so it’s perhaps difficult to appreciate the site’s rich heritage. Through our proposed stadium design, the Club’s plan is to recognise the dock’s unique attributes, accentuating and preserving them and making them accessible for everyone to enjoy.
We have also been continuing our engagement with local residents and businesses in Liverpool 4 on the Goodison Legacy Project. From recent focus groups and drop-in sessions, residents have given us an insight into what they feel their area needs and how the project to ensure a lasting legacy when we leave Goodison will help the local community.
This project will ultimately be overseen by a Trust Board and, working with local residents, we are committed to building on the life-changing and life-saving work of our official charity Everton in the Community and the £10million already spent in developing the Goodison Campus – the Everton Free School & Football College, The People’s Hub, The Blue Base and The People’s Place – by providing health amenities, education facilities, community space, enterprise hubs and homes.
No images of the proposed stadium design were included at any of the recent engagement sessions. However, the latest design concepts are on track to be released as part of the second stage consultation in July. At this stage, every supporter – and, indeed, every resident of the city region – will be encouraged to either attend the consultation or give their feedback online to have their say on our plans.
This second stage of the formal consultation will be running from 26 July to 25 August with times and locations to be announced soon.
Following this stage of the process we aim to submit our planning applications before the end of the year, as outlined when we published our project timescale in 2018.
Finally, thank you to everyone who has taken part in the engagement sessions. The level of support we have had throughout this process has been exceptional. We look forward to hearing from you again and gathering your feedback when we reveal the proposed designs for Bramley-Moore Dock and our initial ideas for the Goodison Legacy Project later this summer.