Reading Football Club’s training provision has been located at our current Hogwood Park facility since 2004. At that time, it proved the perfect facility as the club’s second home.
However, the natural evolution of the club has seen it outgrow its Hogwood Park home and with the club’s ongoing investment in the Premier League’s Elite Player Performance Plan structure for elite Academies, new training facilities are necessary to sustain Category One Academy status and meet the growing everyday demands of a progressive football club.
The site at Bearwood Estate was identified and contracts were initially exchanged with the Royal Merchant Navy School Foundation for the purchase of nearly 120 acres of land on Friday 11th October 2013.
The Bearwood facility will be the new home to our first team, young professionals, Academy players from the ages of 8 to 18, our coaching staff and management team as well as a large proportion of the club’s permanent staff. Plans were drawn up and openly exhibited to supporters and local residents in the Mosaic Room at Bearwood College in December 2013, at which point the public were able to view the plans for the first time, discuss aspects of the scheme with members of the Club's appointed development team and provide valuable feedback.
Permission to develop was then formally requested and in April 2015, the club confirmed that Wokingham Borough Council had resolved to grant planning permission for the development of the new facility. The new site plans to host a total of 13 different-sized football pitches, including three full size first team pitches which will be designed to mirror the exact dimensions of Madejski Stadium, a floodlit all-weather surface and two goalkeeping practice areas.
It will be home to a purpose-built first team building and a separate Academy facility as well as a number of various other ancillary buildings. The development of the site will also involve extensive landscaping of the park and the refurbishment of a number of existing buildings.