PLANS to add two new stands at Chepstow football club have been approved by councillors, despite concerns over parking.

Monmouthshire council’s planning committee has given the go-ahead to a ground upgrade for Chepstow Town AFC, which could pave the way for the club to win promotion.

The new stands, required by the Football Association of Wales to compete in tier two of the Welsh amateur football pyramid, will increase the seating capacity at the Larkfield Park ground from 100 to 250.

One new 50-seat stand will be added next to the existing stand, while an additional 100-seat stand will be added behind a goal near the club house.

Parking concerns have been raised by residents living near to the ground, who say cars are parked on residential streets on match days.

However the club has said it will increase the capacity of its car park from 26 to 37 spaces, and a car parking management plan has also been submitted to address the issue.

Larkfield ward councillor Paul Pavia told a planning committee meeting on Tuesday there are “significant local concerns” over the current parking issues, which had been ‘heightened’ by the new plans.

Cllr Pavia said the club should not be ‘stymied’ from development, but that it has a responsibility to be “a good neighbour”.

“Residents must not be inconvenienced in the way that they have been thus far and potentially could be by these proposals in terms of increased traffic stress and anti-social behaviour,” he said.

“The club must find a way of co-existing with residents to ensure that any impact now and in the future is properly managed and mitigated.”

Cllr Phil Murphy said “ongoing monitoring” was needed over parking issues, including with Gwent Police and the highways department, but that he was in support of the plans.

“We do need to support teams like this,” he added.

Cllr Louise Brown asked if a traffic regulation order, such as for a resident permit scheme, could be considered if the parking management plan is not effective.

However Philip Thomas, from Monmouthshire council’s planning department, said such orders could only be made by the highways department rather than by planning.

Mr Thomas said the proposed parking arrangements exceeded the authority’s requirements and offered “a vast improvement” on the current situation.

The plans were unanimously approved.