Rugby union side London Irish has announced that it has been awarded planning permission for a new £10 million training ground.

The Aviva Premier League team previously had two applications rejected by Spelthorne Borough Council but the club's officials have revealed their delight that the revised plans have been approved, meaning that the team will be able to build on their growing stature.

London Irish are looking to improve their youth facilities so that the club will be able to recruit the best young talent within the sport, training them to be the next big thing and the new training ground is set to be the first step in heightening the team's prospects.

Officials stated that plans had to be revised before the council accepted and now the club will look to begin construction of a new 'Centre of Excellence' at Hazelwood Golf Club, strengthening their position within British rugby.

The Reading-based club had a disappointing recent campaign finishing seventh, outside of the play-off places as well as missing out on a European spot, but it is hoped that this new development will help to bring through the next generation of London Irish players.

Andy Martin, chief executive said: "Clearly we are delighted with the news. We have been working on this project for a very long time and would like to thank sincerely all of our project team, our neighbours and supporters for their unwavering support and encouragement throughout.

"We recognise that our plans will have a huge impact on our local community and therefore we will continue to work closely with our neighbours and Spelthorne Borough Council to ensure we deliver something that everyone can be proud of."

The club, which currently plays its first team fixtures at Reading FC's Madejski Stadium, expects to have the training ground finished by 2015 in time for the new rugby season. It will include five new training pitches with three of them being flood-lit and one being a synthetic '3G' playing surface.

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