Club chairman John Clayton (second from right) and Thomas Golding, son of previous chairman Neil Golding, holding the approval letter for the extension.
Sheppey Rugby Club’s plans for a new clubhouse have been given the go-ahead.
Swale council granted approval to proposals for improved facilities which were submitted in July, after taking more than six years to put together.
They include converting the existing clubhouse into six new Rugby Football Union standard changing rooms with separate facilities for physios and referees.
A new extension will provide space for a large kitchen, a gym, an office, a shop and storage.
The centrepiece will be a function room which will be available to the community for things like conferences, playgroups and weddings.
Sheppey has been at its ground in Lower Road, known as Stupple Field, since 1960 and in its existing clubhouse since 1982.
The club is hoping that the planned improvements will help it to realise its ambitions of reaching higher leagues, developing girls’ and disabled rugby and attracting more youngsters to the game.
Neil Golding, of Sheppey RFC, ,who has led the project, said: “It has been a long and costly process to get to this point and we are delighted to have been given the green light.
“We want to see the club be used as not only a top sporting facility but as a busy resource for the Island, and we would encourage local groups to use it, at very competitive rates.”
The next step is coming up with a strategy to raise the £600,000 it is estimated the extension will cost.
Grants will be sought from the RFU and Sport England while the club, which will also be doing its own fundraising, would welcome support from local businesses or individuals.
Mr Golding thanked those who backed the project.
He said: “A dedicated team has worked on this over many years and we are grateful for the support of local schools, our architect, local housing groups and local parish councils, especially Minster who have been most helpful, as well Swale Borough Council.
“I am dedicating this to the memory of the late Dave Neal who worked tirelessly to realise the club’s vision. Dave may not be around to see this but his legacy will live on.”