Ferryhill Town Council seeks consent to build sports facility

The Advertiser Series: ARTIST'S IMPRESSION: How the proposed pavilion at Mainsforth could look ARTIST'S IMPRESSION: How the proposed pavilion at Mainsforth could look

A PLANNING application to replace a rundown cricket pavilion with a new sports facility has been submitted to Durham County Council.

Ferryhill Town Council wants to demolish the existing pavilion at Mainsforth Sports Complex and build a new base for Mainsforth Cricket Club and Ferryhill Wheelers Cycling Club.

The authority has already secured £180,000 towards the project and believes planning consent would strengthen further bids for external funding.

The existing hut was built in 1989 and is now dilapidated, expensive to maintain and fails to meet the needs of the cricket club, particularly its changing facilities.

It is cold and damp, has a leaky roof and has to be closed during winter so there is no bar income in those months.

In the planning application, the council states: “Unless this project is brought to fruition it is expected that the existing pavilion will be condemned for safety reasons and the provision of grassroots cricket facilities in the town could be lost.”

The new building would be an energy efficient, accessible brick and timber building with changing rooms, showers and toilets, officials and first aid rooms, a kitchen and bar with social area, plant and storage rooms and a covered terrace overlooking the field for spectators.

It could also become a base for the cycling club which currently leads a nomadic existence but is desperate for a clubhouse in which to meet, store bikes and equipment and hold training sessions.

The Wheelers are going from strength to strength with the increase in popularity of the sport and are looking to lease woodland near the complex so the pavilion would make an ideal base.

The application states that a new pavilion would boost participation in cycling and cricket and complement existing sports provision at the site, which includes outdoor bowls, football and angling, and could benefit other local teams, schools and community groups.

The estimated cost of the scheme is £250,000 to £300,000 and the town council will put £50,000 towards the project.

It has also secured £100,000 from Lafarge and together Durham County Councillors Brian Avery and Pauline Crathorne have pledged £30,000 of neighbourhood budget through the 4 Together Partnership.

Consultation on the planning application ends on Thursday, December 26.

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