THE ONGOING birthday banter between Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds has this time seemingly solved an ongoing city centre headache for Wrexham.

The pair have practically been inseparable since taking over as co-chairmen of Wrexham AFC in February 2021.

And they have also become well-known for carrying out elaborate pranks for each other's birthdays.

From blimps to memorial urinals, they've certainly made that a tradition - but the latest 'prank' may well actually be the answer to an unsolved problem in Wrexham's city centre.

Now, for Ryan's 47th birthday today (Monday, October 23), Rob has submitted proposals to ‘gift’ his friend a new public park in the heart of Wrexham City Centre entitled “The Ryan Rodney Reynolds Memorial Park”.

He states that the site will be 'located on the site of the old Hippodrome' on Henblas Street, which has been closed for a number of years.


After dropping a video on Rob’s social channels at 1pm on Monday, interest, excitement and imagination has been sparked locally about what could feature in the park and how it will be used going forward.

Locally, the Wrexham community all know the proposed site as that of the former Hippodrome cinema which was much loved before being demolished in 1998. 

However, after lying vacant for a number of years, Wrexham Council purchased the site in late 2021 with the aim of using it to help create a focal point for increased dwell time and to stimulate some of the regeneration of this part of town.

The launch of the Placemaking plan in 2023 now creates the vision for the Market quarter, which aligns with that of Rob McElhenney for the site.

In a video posted to social media confirming the news, Rob says that: "This park will be beautiful. We'll have open green spaces, pop-up restaurants, we'll have movie screenings, there will be actual green lanterns, benches for old guys to swing on and a statue which may or may not look like Ryan."

Another famous face, Chris Pratt was even brought in to take part in the video which has already got people in Wrexham and beyond talking.

You can watch the teaser video here ...

In a guarded operation until now, Rob has outlined some preliminary plans to Wrexham Council of his aims and ambitions for the park and how he hopes that he and Ryan are able to create a flexible space that can be used by the Wrexham community. 

As the space strongly associates with the Xplore! Science Discovery Centre, there is also potential to create a family orientated space, possibly with play facilities, tables and chairs, artworks, street food and even some community cinema with a nod back to the former Hippodrome site.  

This would, according to Wrexham Council, provide variety in the form and function of the city’s external spaces, creating a new destination for a wider demographic group — reinforcing Wrexham’s ambition of becoming a ‘playful’ city.

If the plans, due to be formally submitted to the council, are approved, the Ryan Rodney Reynolds Memorial Park would be redeveloped and maintained by the pair – with potential revenue streams underpinning the upkeep of the site.

The Leader: PIC: How the Ryan Rodney Reynolds Memorial Park could look (Wrexham Council).

Cllr Mark Pritchard, Leader of Wrexham County Borough Council, said: “After purchasing the former Hippodrome site last year, we’ve had exactly the same ambition as Rob to bring the space back into use as some sort of community park. 

"Rob’s vision fits so well with our Placemaking ambitions for the City Centre and the early proposals for developing it into pop-up space for our community and attracting visitors to this part of town is really intriguing. 

"The added bonus of having Rob and Ryan involved in the regeneration of the site with a few quirky ideas which only they can do is fantastic and we’ll really look forward to working together as their plans develop.”

Plans, as shown in Rob’s online film, are due to be formally submitted to Wrexham County Borough Council in due course.