CHAIRMAN Jeff Mostyn has revealed Cherries have shelved plans to move away from Dean Court in favour of trying to increase capacity at the Goldsands Stadium.
Mostyn – in line with owner Maxim Demin and the club’s other directors – admits there is a “desperate need” to facilitate bigger crowd numbers at the venue.
And although the possibility of building a new stadium at Matchams has been explored, club officials believe erecting a permanent stand would be a better option.
Following promotion to the Championship, Cherries saw a sizeable increase in attendances last season and the club recently announced record ticket sales for the new campaign.
Mostyn told the Daily Echo: “As everybody knows, there is a desperate need for us to look at increasing the capacity at some stage. With 11,700 – including segregation – we probably have the smallest stadium in the Championship.
“We have started a feasibility study and my fellow director John O’Neill has been working on it. One of the options is that we look to put a permanent stand where the temporary stand at the south end of the ground is now.
“I am not suggesting that it is going to happen this season and we deliberately took the stance last season of trying to see where we were going to finish. There would be no point building a permanent stand if, for whatever reason, we weren’t as successful as we had been. It is one possibility.
“We have scoured the conurbation for land where we may have looked towards building a new stadium in the future because there are always going to be various restrictions in place at the Goldsands, whether we own the ground or not.
“Matchams was one site we looked at but it was always going to be difficult regarding access and transportation and it is not something we are currently pursuing.
“The alternative is to look at improving the Goldsands as it is at the moment and the only feasible option would be to replace the temporary stand with a permanent one and that is something we are currently looking at.
“We will work closely with the landlord and the council and deal with any covenants that may be associated with a potential project.
Mostyn also emphasised that the club and the board would ensure supporters and local residents would be consulted regarding any future project.
And asked whether buying back the stadium was on the agenda, Mostyn replied: “We have a tremendous relationship with our landlord and are currently more than happy to continue to pay rent on the stadium. We always have an option to negotiate with the landlord should we wish to discuss purchasing the stadium at a future date.”