Heritage listing boosts efforts to preserve Rovers Memorial Ground

September 30 2016

The Memorial Stadium in Horfield has been added to Bristol City Council’s Local List following an application by Friends of the Memorial Ground (FOMG).

Memorial Stadium

The Memorial Stadium in Horfield has been added to Bristol City Council’s Local List following an application by Friends of the Memorial Ground (FOMG).

The Local List provides the opportunity to identify features of the area that are particularly valued by communities as distinctive elements of the local historic environment and the addition of the Mem was unanimously approved.

The listing is in addition to the war memorial sports ground being declared as an Asset of Community Value by the Council in November. Jamie Carstairs, from FOMG said: “It is encouraging that the council recognises the heritage and community value of the Mem. Local listing means that the sport heritage and war memorial status of the Mem would be a material consideration when deciding planning applications – and that the listing strengthens the case for its retention.”

Wael Al-Qadi, the wealthy current owner of Bristol Rovers, is also a custodian of the stadium. He has confirmed that the new Rovers stadium at the UWE campus at Frenchay is definitely going to be built and that financing it is not a problem.  

Jamie added: “This is excellent news for Rovers. Wael reiterated that the new stadium provision is not dependent on the sale proceeds from the Memorial Stadium. So the local community, with Wael and Rovers, could conceivably afford to seek a respectful future for the ground.  

“Wael also said that the Mem would be sold or auctioned after Rovers have moved to their new stadium at UWE – a move expected in about two or three years' time.

“It remains to be seen if the Memorial Ground’s owners, now and in the future, appreciate its true value, a value far beyond the simple price of land.”

Bristol’s Remembrance Sunday event will be held at the Memorial Ground on November 13. In the centenary year of the Battle of the Somme, when so many sportsmen perished, Bristol’s Memorial Ground is one of the most poignant and effective war memorials in the country.

Further information is available on the Wordpress blog site, “The Memorial Ground, Bristol”. New FOMG members are welcome - contact friendsofthememorialground@gmail.com.