THE DEMOLITION of Gloucester's Grandstand began yesterday - paving the way for the new development at Kingsholm.
The original stand, that was opened in 1932, is being replaced by more than 6,000 seats ahead of next season that will take Kingsholm's capacity to almost 17,000.
Ken Nottage, Gloucester's managing director told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk "It is difficult to describe just how significant this development is to Gloucester Rugby and I am pretty sure that I speak for every member of staff at the club - on and off the field.
"I cannot praise highly enough the work that has been accomplished in the last few months to make a project of this size successful.
"We are a club who want to be challenging for the top honours in the game with the hugely exciting squad that is being assembled, and this off-field development will take Gloucester Rugby and Kingsholm to the next level.
"There is an awful lot of work to be accomplished but I am delighted such a great start has been made."
Yesterday, the old ticket office and parts of the Members' Bar were demolished following the soft demolition on Sunday and by the end of the week, demolition on the main Grandstand will have started.
Sean Roberts, Operations Manager, added: "This is a great step forward, work is on schedule and although it sad to see such a famous old structure demolished, Gloucester Rugby is moving towards a bright future - something that everybody at the club wants.
"Over the coming weeks, the Grandstand will go, the site will be cleared and then foundation and ducting work on the new build will begin."
Speaking to the media following the 31-33 West Country Challenge Cup defeat to Exeter Chiefs at the Memorial Stadium, Director of Rugby David Humphreys was full of praise for his side's battling qualities in a bruising encounter but concerned about the injuries picked up.
The West Country Challenge Cup fixture against the Exeter Chiefs at the Memorial Stadium in Bristol on Saturday (kick off 3pm) will be Gloucester's last chance to work on things like new combinations says Director of Rugby, David Humphreys.
Speaking after the 30-21 West Country Challenge Cup defeat at Bath, Director of Rugby David Humphreys spoke of the improvements his team are making as preseason progresses but acknowledges that there is still work to do ahead of the start of the Aviva Premiership.
Speaking to the local media ahead of Saturday's trip to Bath Rugby in the West Country Challenge Cup, front rower Nick Wood spoke of the hard work put in across the extended preseason and highlighted the competition for front row spots in the squad.
Gloucester have named a 30 man squad for the latest round of West Country Challenge Cup action against Bath on Saturday, with Director of Rugby David Humphreys stressing the need to keep an eye on player workload ahead of what will be a long, tough season.
Describing the 50-7 West Country Challenge Cup win over Bath on Sunday as a '...good hit out...', wing Charlie Sharples admitted that it had been a good opportunity to put into practice things that the squad have been trying out in training in recent weeks.
Speaking to the local media after the 50-7 victory over Bath Rugby on Sunday, David Humphreys was happy with his squad's effort, with the most important aspect being the game time earned by his players.
Gloucester make wholesale changes to the side that started at Exeter last Saturday as they prepare to take on Bath at the Memorial Stadium, Bristol on Sunday in the West Country Challenge Cup (kick off 3pm). The Director of Rugby told GRTV that the players are raring to go and that he's looking forward to seeing different combinations in action.
A late penalty from Exeter fly-half Will Hooley gave the Chiefs a narrow 33-31 West Country Challenge Cup win over a heroic Gloucester outfit in a bruising encounter at the Memorial Stadium on Saturday.
Gloucester Rugby will play their fourth and final West Country Challenge Cup fixture this weekend (Memorial Stadium, Bristol, 3pm) against the Exeter Chiefs, and have named a side featuring a host of first regulars.
On Wednesday evening, Gloucester Rugby duo Mark Atkinson and Tom Savage visited local rugby club Hardwicke and Quedgeley Harlequins RFC for the first session as part of the Gloucester Rugby in Local Clubs coaching initiative.