Castleford Tigers reveal new stadium images: Here's a first view of how rebuilt ground at Wheldon Road will look

Castleford Tigers have released the first images of what their rebuilt stadium at Wheldon Road will look like.

By Peter Smith
Friday, 15th April 2022, 12:24 pm

Subject to funding, Tigers want to remain at their existing site, rather than move to a new ground at Junction 32 of the M62 near Glasshoughton, which is owned by developers Highgrove Group.

Highgrove propose to submit a planning application over the summer which would change usage of the approved Axiom retail and leisure development at Junction 32 to an employment site.

Rather than build a new stadium for Tigers at that location, Highgrove have agreed to provide funds towards major improvements to Wheldon Road.

A pitchside view of what Tigers' redeveloped stadium will look like. Picture by Castleford Tigers/Highgrove Group/WMA Architects.

Funds raised by the proposed new employment development would supplement Wakefield Council’s £2m grant to Castleford Tigers via their Rugby League Resilience Fund, announced at the end of last year.

This mirrors the mechanism of the recent planning approval which provides funds to redevelop Wakefield Trinity’s Belle Vue ground.

Tigers plan to demolish and rebuild the main stand and modernise the existing Princess Street Stand, Railway End and Wheldon Road End.

The development includes new facilities for fans, food and drink outlets, four new changing rooms, a new gymnasium, additional medical and physiotherapy facilities, new staff and foundation offices and hospitality suites.

An exterior view of Tigers' proposed stadium redevelopment. Picture by Castleford Tigers/Highgrove Group/WMA Architects.

The new and improved facilities are expected to generate extra income, putting Tigers on an equal footing with other top-flight clubs.

Tigers’ managing director Mark Grattan said: “There has long been a need for serious investment into the fabric of Wheldon Road.

“We spend large sums each year on maintenance, but this is really just applying a sticking plaster.

“What the stadium needs is a full revamp, befitting of our status as a Super League club.

A view of how Tigers' redeveloped stadium will look. Picture by Castleford Tigers/Highgrove Group/WMA Architects.

“Following Wakefield Council’s announcement regarding their Rugby League Resilience Fund and Wakefield Trinity’s recent successful planning approval, we have been working closely with Highgrove Group to secure the additional funds necessary to make Wheldon Road fit for the future.”

Highgrove Group say the revised plans for the land would create around 1,800 jobs there and almost 600 elsewhere to support it, plus more than 650 jobs during construction.

A spokesperson for Highgrove Group said: “We are delighted to provide details of the plans we have developed with Castleford Tigers to support redevelopment of the Wheldon Road stadium should the Axiom site be successfully repurposed for employment development.

“Highgrove Group is currently working on a planning application and intends to start community consultation in the coming months.”

Now known as the Jungle, Castleford have played at the Wheldon Road ground - which was initially home to the town’s football club - since the 1927/28 season.

The stadium is recognised as one of the most atmospheric venues in Betfred Super League, but is now badly dated and facilities for players, fans and sponsors have fallen well below the level of other top-flight stadiums.

The club have been planning to move to a new site throughout the summer era, which began in 1996, but - as is the case with neighbours Wakefield Trinity - redeveloping the existing ground is now regarded as the most viable option.