Construction begins on cricket facility

By Tim Aldred

20 Nov 2023

Lancashire Cricket Turf Cutting

The turf has been cut on an all-encompassing cricket facility which will serve the local community as well as hosting professional fixtures.

Lancashire County Council is working with Lancashire Cricket on the development in Farington, with Bamber Bridge's Eric Wright undertaking construction work.

The ECB has provided £1.6m in funding towards the development, and it is hoped that it will be ready in 19 months - in time for the 2025 season.

Featuring two cricket pitches, the facility will be able to host a number of men’s and women’s competitive matches each year with the second cricket pitch supporting community, recreational and youth cricket. It adds a new training facility for Lancashire Cricket.

It will also a Women’s Centre of Excellence for the North-West of England and will help Lancashire Cricket continue to bring through the cricketers of the future.

To officially mark the start of work, Lancashire County Council's cabinet member for economic development and growth, Aidy Riggott, was joined by Lancashire Cricket's Mark Chilton for a turf-cutting ceremony on the site.

Mark Chilton, director of cricket performance at Lancashire Cricket, said: “This is a landmark day for Lancashire Cricket as construction begins at Farington, a unique ground that will bring together elite and community cricket – located on one site in the heart of our county.

“It’s something that we’ve been working on, alongside Lancashire County Council, for a long while now and the development will provide top class elite facilities for both our men’s and women’s side which can also serve recreational cricket and the wider community at the same time."

Clare Connor, ECB deputy chief executive, said: “This new facility represents one of the ECB’s largest ever investments because of its scope; it will become a professional standard hub for women’s and girls’ cricket, a regional development centre for disability cricket, and a place which will be used by state schools, local clubs and community groups.

“In doing so, Farington will directly support many of the game’s priorities, through long-term growth and connecting more communities through cricket.”

Katherine Fletcher, Member of Parliament for South Ribble, said: "I was delighted to be at Farington for the start of what is a new era. We have spades in the ground for a transformative sports complex that a whole range of community cricket clubs and groups can access alongside the elite sportsmen and women from Lancashire Cricket Club who will use it to train and compete at.

"This is two LCCs working together to build a legacy locally, nationally, and internationally for the sport and especially for the development of the women’s game, but I am most thrilled about how the community will be able to enjoy some of these world class facilities when they are ready in 2025. I am looking forward to coming back when the doors open.”

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