PLANS have been revealed to sell the Horwich RMI Social Club and develop a new ‘modern-day’ venue.

The committee at the club based in Ramsbottom Road has decided to push ahead with its idea following financial struggles at the venue, losing tens of thousands a year.

As part of the development, the current building would be sold and the new 500 square metre building would be constructed off Chorley New Road on a section of the bowling green.

A spokesman for Horwich RMI Club said: “Fifty years ago this club was built on behalf of the railways and we have kept it going to the point where we have had to sell property and land to keep it afloat.

“We have come to a realisation after 50 years that this club is not fit for purpose.

“The whole culture of clubs has changed. One thing that hasn’t is the ever-increasing overheads.

“The overheads are going to put us out of business. Before it puts us out of business, the committee looked at what alternative we could do.

“Because we have extensive lands, we decided to utilise the piece of land, which is at the bowling green side.

“We want to build a new club for the next 40 to 50 years.”

The new club would have a single entrance off Chorley New Road and keep the current car park.

It will include an office space, a business space, a cellar, a lounge for about 60 people, one central bar area and three distinct function rooms, which can be used as one large room.

The bowling club would be reduced from 50 by 50 square metres to 35 by 35 square metres and the RMI committee was hoping to use some land to create an artificial pitch. But the latter piece of land might be kept unchanged after members raised concerns.

The spokesman said the current clubhouse was too big and was not attracting enough bookings.

In the current financial year, the hall has had a 19 per cent occupancy, one suite has had 11 per cent and one of the other suites is at nine per cent.

He said: “This building will go up for sale, the proceeds of which will go towards funding of the development. There will be no personal gain.

“If we were getting the people through the doors to facilitate the club, we would not be here.

“The upkeep of the building is tremendous and cashflow is our biggest concern.”

“It needs a lot of repair. If we were to repair the whole building we are talking in the region of £250,000.”

The club is currently consulting with people about the plans and the sale of the building.

The spokesman said a planning application would be submitted ‘shortly’.