Olympic legacy cash boost for 200-yr-old Bexley Cricket Club
PUBLISHED: 14:09 27 October 2011
Residents are set to benefit from a £39,000 Olympic legacy windfall after Bexley Cricket Club secured a grant to improve facilities and expand activities.
The cash will be used to level the outfield at the ground in Manor Way, Bexley, which has suffered subsidence. Work starts early next year.
Improvements will enable the club to expand its cricket and softball activities for under 11s, girls and adults with disabilities.
Chris Woolley, chairman of the club, which came fourth in the premier league this year, said: “We’ve been going for 200 years. We’d like to expand our facilities to more sections of society.
“The award allows the completion of the upgrading of the entire cricket ground. The club will also be investing a considerable sum of approximately £15,000 towards the project.
“It will also allow Bexley Cricket Club, which has Club Mark accreditation and is a Focus Club for cricket in Kent, to continue to provide quality sport to the local community.”
The present ground has been in use by the club since 1866 and several Bexley members have played at both county and international level including more recently Robert Key and Min Patel.
A girls’ section opened at the club two years ago which will be extended to increase the number of females participating in the sport.
The money which comes from Sport England’s Protecting Playing Fields Olympic Legacy Fund, will also be used to restore two grass hockey pitches for Burnt Ash Bexley Hockey Club.
In neighbouring Greenwich, Blackheath Cricket Club has secured £50,000 from the fund which will be used to create a new cricket pitch at The Old Military Academy in Woolwich.
Sport England has placed legal protection on both sites which means they will not be developed on for at least 25 years.
MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup, James Brokenshire said: “This is great news for cricket in Bexley.
“I hope it will help encourage local cricketing talent to take wickets and score runs for years to come.”