Work is to start immediately on a £140,000 overhaul of Tillside Cricket Club’s pavilion, with a view to complete the project in June.
The scheme was recently approved by officers at Northumberland County Council under delegated powers, in what has been described as a ‘massive step forward’ for the club.
The intention is to demolish the existing building – constructed out of panels from a second-hand chicken shed in 1981 – to make way for a new pavilion that will meet league standards and modern expectations. It will include kitchen facilities, showers for the players, a changing room for the umpires, new toilets as well as a greywater recycling provision, solar panels to help with water heating, waterless urinals and disabled access.
The current pavilion doesn’t even have electricity.
Club representative Stephen Nutt said: “This project will secure a facility for many, many years to come for many subsequent generations of cricketers of all ages and abilities who want to play cricket in the north Northumberland area.
“We are going to push ahead immediately with the aim of finishing in June.
“There will be a certain amount of disruption at the start of the season, but we ask everyone to be patient because I am sure that the end result will be fantastic.”
The club has been fund-raising for some time and as part of its push, it has received a grant from the England and Wales Cricket Board.
The club, founded in 1889, operates two senior league teams as well as a friendly side. It also has around 120 junior players, both boys and girls.