Chairman Tom Walkinshaw has confirmed that Gloucester Rugby Club will have the biggest exclusive club rugby union ground in the Premiership after announcing plans for a new £8 million grandstand development for the start of the 2005/06 season.
Talking to the Kingsholm crowd before Saturday's Zurich Premiership game against Leeds on Saturday, Walkinshaw guaranteed that a new 7,500 seated capacity stand, taking the capacity from 13,000 to more than 17,500, would be constructed this summer.
"As you all know we've been working on a grandstand development (opposite the Shed) at Kingsholm for some time now, and I'm delighted to be able to confirm that it will now go ahead this summer, in time for the new season," said Walkinshaw.
"We have been working non-stop in the last few days to get to the stage where we can press the green button.
"The new £8 million stand will have more than 7,500 seats, taking our capacity to more than 17,500, making us the biggest solus club rugby union ground in the Premiership, and one of the biggest in Europe. The new development will take this club into an all-year round business."
Gloucester first moved to its Kingsholm ground in 1891 and the West Country location has become famous for its team and passionate supporters throughout the world.
"Kingsholm is the home of Gloucester Rugby Club, and will continue to be so. It means as much to everyone at the Club to stay here as it does to all of you," Walkinshaw said to the Kingsholm crowd.
Addressing the supporters, the Club chairman added: "You've all told us how much you want the ground to develop, and it's now going to happen.
"There is a lot of hard work that needs to go into making this a success, and we need your support throughout the next five months to achieve it.
"This decision has only just been made, and over the next few days and weeks we'll be announcing more information about the project, including a full breakdown of the facilities that will include the 7,500 seats, a new 1,500 capacity bar, a new shop, conference facilities, corporate boxes and more," stated the Club chairman.
The Club intends to announce details of season tickets for all areas of the ground, including the new stand, in time for the Saracens game on 30 April.
Gloucester Rugby Club will be announcing further details of the development throughout the course of the next few weeks.
Gloucester meet the Exeter Chiefs for the fourth time in competitive action this weekend, this time in the semi-final of the European Rugby Challenge Cup. Director of Rugby David Humphreys told the local media this week that this is the sort of game that Gloucester want to be involved in on a regular basis and that he and his team are looking forward to it.
Following the 29-26 loss to Harlequins, club captain Billy Twelvetrees spoke of his disappointment that the Cherry and Whites were unable to cash in on the home side's indiscipline and lose a lead on Saturday afternoon.
Number eight Gareth Evans admitted to a collective feeling of frustration as Gloucester lost narrowly at Harlequins on Saturday, but insisted that there are plenty of positives to draw upon ahead of next Saturday's European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final at home to Exeter.
Gloucester travel to the Stoop on Saturday afternoon to take on Harlequins in the Aviva Premiership. The Cherry and Whites make just two changes from last weekend's win over Connacht as they seek consistency and continuity in their play as Nick Walshe told the local media this week.
Speaking to GRTV after the final whistle, Tom Palmer praised the Cherry and Whites concentration and desire to hold on to a narrow 14-7 victory. The second row topped the tackle charts with 19 as he led the home team's resistance.
Supporters who are still to purchase tickets for Saturday's European Rugby Challenge Cup semi-final at home to Exeter Chiefs at Kingsholm (kick off 7:45pm) are reminded that Early Bird prices are only valid until 6:30pm on Thursday evening.
The Gloucester Wheelchair Rugby team travelled to Fenton Manor Complex, Stoke on Trent last Saturday to take part in the final round of the GBWR Super Series of the season, knowing just one win would be enough to crown them Division 3 Champions.