Maidenhead United Football Club could get more than 500 new seats for fans after plans to extend the ground were approved by the council.

Plans to build a new north stand and extend the south stand at Maidenhead’s York Road stadium were granted planning permission on Monday, June 24. It comes after the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead council blocked the club’s plans to relocate to a new ground.

The club says the development will help the club meet league standards. A club statement accompanying the application said: “As a National League Club Maidenhead United is required to ensure that our facilities are maintained within the minimum requirements of the league’s ground grading criteria which include a ground capacity of 4,000, including 500 covered seats.

“We are also required to demonstrate annually that the club can meet the ground grading requirements of the English Football League.”

When the club first applied for planning permission it still hoped to move to a new, purpose-built stadium at Braywick Park. The plans to extend York Road were intended as a fallback option.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead – then led by the Conservatives – formally agreed in 2022 to release the land at Braywick Park to the club for a sum of £460,000.

But the agreement said the transfer could only happen once the council had completed its legal responsibility to consult the public on the plans to dispose of the open space.

Some 2,000 fans signed a petition in favour of the deal, and around 1,000 people signed a petition against it. The council also received 22 objections against the plans to sell off the land.

The Conservatives were replaced by a coalition of Liberal Democrats and Borough First Independents in May 2023. And the new leadership decided in July that year not to dispose of the land after all.

In a statement in March this year club chairman Peter Griffin said a relocation was still the most ‘sensible and suitable’ option for the club. But he said in the short term the club had no option but to continue its redevelopment on York Road.

Where the new stand and seats could be built at Maidenhead United's ground at York RoadWhere the new stand and seats could be built at Maidenhead United's ground at York Road (Image: Maidenhead United Football Club)

He said: “We can no longer ignore the requirement to spend money at York Road given our safety certificate and ground grading could be at risk if we do not deliver improvements to the terracing and barriers throughout the ground, to our clubhouse and changing facilities, as well as our disabled facilities.”

Under the approved plans a new stand seating 304 people will be built at the north end of the ground, while the south stand will be extended to provide 224 additional seats.

There will also be a seating area for wheelchair users and disabled people, disabled toilets, a changing block and improved floodlighting.

Similar plans were approved in February 2019, but the club says the latest version includes improved facilities for disabled fans.