Hackney to be the home of cricket in East London



Cricket in London will get a major boost with the development of eight new cricket grounds on Hackney Marshes after Hackney Council secured a grant from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in partnership with Sport England.

In conjunction with the ECB and the Middlesex Cricket Board, Hackney Council is constructing eight new cricket grounds, which include three fine turf squares and seven artificial cricket pitches on Hackney’s North Marsh.

The cricket facilities will open next summer and are a major part of the Council’s multi-million pound investment scheme for the development of the Marshes, which includes state of the art rugby pitches, Football Association-standard football pitches and properly sized junior football pitches.

Central to all the development is the building of the Hackney Marshes Centre on South Marsh which includes educational class rooms, refreshment facilities and brand new accessible changing rooms. There will also be new changing and refreshment facilities on North Marsh.

The whole of the Marshes will be serviced by new and refurbished transport connections, including a new bridge between South and East Marsh and the reopening to traffic of Cow Bridge on North Marsh.

Hackney Council Cabinet Member for Regeneration and the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Guy Nicholson, said: “This is a key part of the Council’s investment programme which is using the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games as an opportunity to give our residents world-class sports facilities alongside the new venues being built at the Olympic Park.

“Next summer there will be five artificial cricket pitches available for cricket enthusiasts on North Marsh, and by summer 2012, the additional three fine turf squares will be in use, bringing the total up to eight for use during the cricket season. With the building of changing rooms and a pavilion nearby, this really will become the home of cricket in East London.”

Bruce Cruse, the ECB’s National Funding and Facilities Manager, said: “The ECB is pleased to invest in this worthy project and to give a boost to grass roots facility development. It has been planned to input new impetus into the playing future of the local community. I am confident that as the investment matures cricket locally will go from strength to strength.”