THE Isle of Wight Rugby Football Club has applied for planning permission to install floodlights at its Wootton pitch, but residents have raised concerns about the impact of light pollution.
The club has been awarded a £38,000 grant by the Rugby Football Union after it was chosen to become a Lead Up and Legacy
Centre for the 2015 Rugby World Cup, which is being staged in England and
The club hopes to use the money to install six floodlights at the rugby pitch and training area, at Wootton Recreation Ground, and a further £10,000 to refurbish the clubhouse. It will have to match fund the grants.
Club president Paul Simpson said: "It won't be the death of the club if we don't get planning permission, but for the club to flourish and grow and attract more youngsters it is important. It would mean we could train in the evenings, for maybe an hour-and-a-half, twice a week, and we would be happy for other clubs and schools to use it — it could be a facility for the whole community."
Wootton Bridge Parish Council objected to the plans at its meeting last Tuesday (18), after concerns were raised by residents living next to the ground.
The application includes detailed information explaining how light spillage would be kept to a minimum, but councillors have asked for an environmental impact assessment to be carried out to determine how the 15m high floodlights would affect neighbouring properties.
Consultation on the planning application closes on March 7. The plans can be viewed here.