BROMSGROVE Sporting could once again have the Victoria Ground to themselves with tenants Worcester City moving towards a return to a stadium of their own.

City have played at Bromsgrove for more than three years since the start of the 2016-17 season, previously sharing with Kidderminster after Worcester's St George's Lane ground was sold in 2013.

Councillors have approved loaning £750,000 to Worcestershire Football Association to help pay for a major revamp of a ground with a view to the Blues ending their exile and returning to the city.

Worcestershire FA said it needed the final bit of cash to complete the redevelopment of Claines Lane in Worcester which includes a new artificial 3G pitch, a 100-seat stand and new floodlights.

WFA was given permission to demolish the existing facilities at Claines Lane in Worcester and build a new clubhouse, changing rooms and offices for its new headquarters.

Despite gaining permission for the redevelopment by the city council’s planning committee almost a year ago, WFA had yet to secure all of the money needed to carry out the redevelopment.

Councillor Louis Stephen said the city council was very keen to support local football in Worcester but the money would also help prepare the facilities for Worcester City's hoped return.

After the meeting he said: “I’m very pleased that we have agreed unanimously on a cross-party basis to support the further development of grass-roots football for the city.

“I do hope that the work we are doing with the local FA will enable Worcester City to come back to the city.

“The loan we are providing to WFA is a key enabler to complete their project and hopefully also bring Worcester City back home too.”

Talks between the city council’s party leaders and council bosses have been held in the last month about the possibility of Worcester City moving to Claines Lane.

Discussions between the exiled club’s shareholders and supporters trust centred on whether the club could ground-share with Worcester Raiders, who are having to play away from Claines Lane because of the refurbishment, or hand over the club to Worcester Warriors rugby club owners Bond Group and play at Sixways.

Much of the work was expected to have been completed by September in time for the start of the new season.

The full cost of the redevelopment, expected income from the new facilities and a complete breakdown of the secured funding is included in confidential papers and was recently discussed by the city council’s policy and resources committee.

Around £1 million has already been secured from The Football Foundation – money handed from Premier League football clubs, the Football Association via government body Sports England – to help improve grassroots football as well as several other smaller grants.

WFA has said it will also use around £300,000 of its reserves to help pay for the work and using the money it brings in from selling its current offices in Hampton Lovett, near Droitwich.