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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 July, 2004, 06:21 GMT 07:21 UK
Scarlets home in on stadium site
Madejski Stadium
The new ground could be modelled on Reading's Madejski Stadium
The Llanelli Scarlets rugby team want to build their new 20m stadium in the shadow of Trostre tinplate works.

Shareholders and members received letters on Thursday telling them that funding for the 15,000-seat arena is being finalised.

Carmarthenshire Council will develop the site it owns at Pemberton in partnership with the club.

It could see the Scarlets leave Stradey Park, where they have played since 1879, before the end of 2007.

Now that the location has been identified we can start to move forward on the exciting work of designing our new home
Stuart Gallacher

The club says redeveloping Stradey is not and option as road links could not cope with the extra traffic.

The new ground will be just off the main Llanelli to Swansea link road and the Hendy M4 link.

Fans were worried that a new stadium could be too far out of the town centre, but Pemberton is the same distance away as Stradey, although to the east rather than the west.

A team of architects, engineers and property consultants has been carrying out investigations at the site since the Scarlets announced their intention to move back in March.

A final design for the stadium has still to be decided, but it is understood the club and council are looking at a similar layout to Reading Football Club's Madejski Stadium.

Stradey Park
Stradey Park has been home to the Scarlets since 1879

It will include an athletics track, indoor training barn and second training pitch.

Professional era

Commercial developments on the land will help pay for the stadium, along with grant funding.

Club chief executive Stuart Gallacher said the Scarlets were currently in discussions about buying back Stradey Park from the Welsh Rugby Union.

The club sold the ground for 1.25m at the start of the professional era and it is understood it would cost in the region of 1.4m to reclaim.

Stradey would be redeveloped with a mix of leisure and housing uses.

"Now that the location has been identified we can start to move forward on the exciting work of designing our new home," he said.

"There is a lot to consider and we will soon announce a consultation process to make sure we get everyone's views."

He said the club would hold a meeting of shareholders and members in the near future.

Reports will go before a full meeting of Carmarthenshire Council next month.

Council chief executive Mark James said: "We are continuing to work well with Stuart and his team at the Scarlets and so far everything is progressing as it should be."

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