Groundwork has started at the Meadows Recreation Ground in Nottingham’s Victoria Embankment – the site of a new cricket pavilion benefiting local communities.
The project will see the development of a brand new dedicated cricket clubhouse on the recreation ground – and is being delivered by nearly 50 local partners who are giving time, services and materials for free.
The new Victoria Embankment Cricket Pavilion will help re-home two cricket teams as well as boosting football in the Nottingham community – and is being supported by a £150,000 Sport England grant. The grant is part of several funding streams which will see the development of the new clubhouse.
This week Delta Simons, Caxton Builders Midlands, Blok N Mesh, Konstructa Hire, and Plaza all started work on the groundworks – which will make way for the new pavilion.
The project is the vision of the Trent Bridge Community Trust to leave a legacy from Investec Ashes Test Matches at Trent Bridge in both 2013 and 2015. The new clubhouse will drive the trust’s aim of maintaining cricket’s status as the sport of choice for the city of Nottingham and the wider county.
Tracey Francis of the Trent Bridge Community Trust said: “We are absolutely thrilled that this project has started. We believe that it is a truly fantastic project which will really benefit the local Nottingham community by boosting sport for all in the city.
“At a time when we know fewer people are playing cricket at community level, our aim was to protect the future of cricket and ensure that the sport continues to be played at Victoria Embankment for the next 100 years.”
The four partners behind the initiative are Nottingham City Council, Trent Bridge Community Trust – representing Nottinghamshire Cricket Club, & Nottinghamshire Cricket Board, city architects Maber and construction giant Willmott Dixon.
The clubhouse will create four changing rooms, toilets, showers, disability access, rooms for officials, kitchen area, and external viewing area.
The build is expected to take 24 weeks with an official launch as part of the Ashes Test Match Series in early August 2015.
The total project cost is £750,000. £388,000 is made up of grants from Sport England – along with £125,000 from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), £80,000 from WREN and £61,000 from Nottingham City Council. An additional £5,000 will be met by the fundraising efforts of the Trent Bridge Community Trust. Nottinghamshire Cricket Board will contribute £10,000 and Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club will add £6,500 into the pot.
Around £360,000 will come from the goodwill of Nottingham architects Maber which is designing the project and construction giant Willmott Dixon which is building it through the Willmott Dixon Foundation as part of the group’s Trainee Challenge. The project is also being supported by supply chain partners.
“This project has truly caught the imagination of so many local businesses. Each partner has either given their skills, services, expertise or goods free of charge or at or below cost price,” added Tracey.
“To all of these organisations, we are truly grateful as it simply wouldn’t have been possible without their industry expertise, their time – and their money.”
The original plan had been to refurbish an original pavilion at the embankment which had been in a state of disrepair for two decades. But because the pavilion was so dilapidated, and because it would not have met disability access requirements nor governing body specifications, it was decided that a new build was a more viable alternative..
Nick Heath, operations director at Willmott Dixon, said: “Our company is committed to providing employability and apprenticeship opportunities within the construction sector. This project will be used as Willmott Dixon’s regional Trainee Challenge Project this year, which will create a fantastic learning platform to project management as well as providing trade-based skills for all our 12 regional trainees.
“The project is being overseen by Willmott Dixon trainee Zen Robertson who is gaining a massive insight into construction. The project is helping her development a wide range of skills which will undoubtedly benefit her long-term career.”
Steve Williams, Maber director, said: “Maber has a long and historical partnership with Trent Bridge. As a Nottingham-based architecture practice, it was important for us that we got behind the Field of Dreams project. Maber celebrates three decades in business this year – and it was an honour to support this important community initiative in 2015.”
Coun Dave Trimble, portfolio holder for leisure and culture at Nottingham City Council, (pictured), said: “The new cricket clubhouse on Victoria Embankment will provide a superb resource for the local community and will encourage the continued playing of cricket by local clubs. It’s important that we offer high quality, modern facilities which are designed in keeping with the local surroundings to enable people in Nottingham to take part in and enjoy sport.”
Over the past three years, the Nottinghamshire Cricket Board & ECB have invested in three artificial cricket pitches at Victoria Embankment – with a nationally renowned ‘Last Man Stands’ league operating through the summer months featuring 16 teams, and a brand new community cricket team called The Meadows.
The project has attracted massive support from other local partner organisations and supporters. They are: BDA Surveying, Derry Building Services, J Wright Roofing, Willmott Dixon, Caxton Builders Midlands, G F Tomlinson, Inside Out Group, Maber Associates, family run signage firm AR Signs, Delta Simons, Acorn Aluminium, Couch Perry Wilkes, Curtins, local builders merchants Taylor Maxwell, Total Reclaims Demolition, Plaza, Syston Doors, McKenna Flooring, Blok n Mesh, Complete Rendering Solutions, Midland Building Products, Reynolds, Magpie Security, Altro, Faithful+Gould, Rilmac, Whitecroft Lihting, Ventilux, ADT, Newey & Eyre, Waterloo Air Products, Gill Insulation, Jaga Heating Products, BSS Group Ltd, Michael Pavis Limited, Jewson, Wickes, Cartwright Communications, Konstructa Hire, Sharpline Decorators, Dale Studios and RizkMcCay.
Volunteers from the local community will get involved and businesses will be encouraged to support the work by volunteering their time to the project.