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Cricket@Warwick Review

An Overview

Prior to 1998 the University cricket pitches were based on central campus and the AU Pavilion was based right next to the pitches. In 1998 the current Cryfield Sports Pavilion was opened and thus the sports pitches were relocated. Cryfield would prove to be a standout sports facility within higher education in the UK, which still boasts some of the best pitches in the sector. Unfortunately for the cricket community the decision was taken to position the pavilion 300-500 metres away from the pitches which is against Sport England guidance when building a multi-sport facility and extremely rare in cricketing circles. For over 10 years the various cricket teams at Warwick have struggled to provide the type of home cricketing experience to its players, opposition, spectators or officials that they deserve.

Cricket is played by 120 million players across the globe, making it the world's second most popular sport.

Warwick plays various forms of the game from 20 overs to 55 overs which can last between 3-8 hours.

Warwick has enjoyed a rich history of cricketing participation currently boasting over 30 teams in various forms and until very recently had four pitches. Maths & Stats cricket pitch has since been built over and Warwick HRI has slipped into a state of disrepair.

There is a great deal of frustration within Warwick's cricketing community highlighted by the fact the University's Mens (BUCS) first team have opted to play home games at Leamington CC and the Staff & Post Graduate Sunday team to play the vast majority of their fixtures away from home.

There is universal agreement within the Cricketing community that the pitches are outstanding but the main Sports Pavilion is too far away and the mini pavilions/scoring huts are not appropriate.

The mission...

For Warwick and our partners to provide appropriate home pitch side facilities comparable to Russell Group colleagues for Cricket matches and to support existing sporting activities such as Football, Rugby and Lacrosse in addition to any other internal University and external community bookings

University of Warwick - Cricket Pavilion

Lakeside Pav

Coventry University - Cricket Pavilion

Coventry Uni Cricket

The purpose of this page...

This page is designed to be an area where information concerning the current and potential future cricket facilities provision within the University of Warwick is captured. It includes reference to our Russell Group colleagues in addition to key University MCCU.

Also included is feedback relating to our current facilities from Warwickshire Cricket Board/ECB and the Cricket 2015 Survey results.

The University of Warwick currently has two cricket pitches and a 3 bay cricket net which is part of the University's Cryfield Centre which caters for outdoor field sports such as Football, Lacrosse, Rugby Union/League and Cricket.

Who are we?

The Cricket@Warwick Review Working Group

Chris Wood - Warwick Sport Cricket Activator and ITS LiB XI Cricket Team Captain

Joe Barr - Warwick Sport Cricket Activator and ITS LiB XI Cricket Team commitee member

Dean McIlwraith - ITS LiB XI Cricket Team Club Captain

Brian Nairn - ECB Level 2 Cricket Coach

Lincoln Alison - Honourary President (Staff and PG Cricket Club)

Steve Lamb - Grounds Liaison (Staff and PG Cricket Club)

Robert Kraus - President of the University of Warwick Men’s Cricket Club

Students Union Sports Officer - TBC

Students Union - Disabled Students' Officer - TBC

Warwickshire Cricket Board Representative - TBC

Neil Garland - Warwickshire Cricket League Grounds Liason Officer

What are the current challenges and their consequences?

  • No showers, toilets, running water or wash basins
  • No wheelchair access to pitchside due to uneven ground and lack of parking/paving
  • No disabled toilets pitchside
  • No interior lighting or exterior security lighting
  • Insufficient space for two teams plus kit and officials to change
  • No kitchen facility with electricity to provide hot/cold food or drinks offering
  • Insufficient space for two teams, their kit plus officials to shelter in inclement weather such as rain, wind and direct sunlight - some teams bring their own gazebo or shelter in their cars...
  • Lack of secure grounds and team equipment storage facility - 5 bags of kit held in team captains car boots all year round...
  • Lack of local car parking facilties for the Lakeside and Roadside Cricket pitch
  • No social space for teas, spectators or opportunity to socialise before, during or after games
  • Loss of most energetic and motivated players to local Cricket Clubs in Coventry, Stoneliegh, Warwick, Leamington and Kenilworth
  • Clubs express a lack of willingness to play at Warwick and do not look forward to visiting us
  • Players have been forced to make emergency toilet trips into the bushes adjaicent to the pitches
  • Senior (in both age and experience) umpires have been forced to walk up to 15-20 minutes to access toilet facilities and/or purchase cold drinks and snacks due to the Sport Pavilion being closed.
  • The Sports Pavilion and it's externally accessible toilets have been locked during fixtures
  • Embarassment of current cricketing community when hosting away teams, this can be very demotivating
  • A lower than optimal level of pitch and facility utilisation - externals won't book because they need a minimum facility level
  • A near total absence of female cricketers competing in Warwick teams or indeed fielding a Womens side at all
  • Little to no community engagement in cricket as a sport, insuficient faciltiies to host junior/colts cricket matches or tournaments
  • Little to no spectators for matches despite having a great location to enjoy shelter, no viewing positions, no bar...
  • Pay and display to park, some players have had to leave mid match to pay for tickets and on one occasion 3 cars had windows smashed and two laptops were stolen - would not happen if parking was local to ground and in sight of pavilions/CCTV
  • No availability to park anymore thanks to the removal of Car Park 3 and the spaces at the Milking Parlour
  • Almost impossible to host extended overs cricket, T20 being a realistic limit without major prior planning and inconvenience
  • Damaged scoreboards that no longer work and have broken numbers and missing leters
  • The pavilions are physically showing signs of degredation and no annual maintenence works (broken and damaged wooden panels, broken windows etc)
  • Broken and missing chairs and tables
  • No removal of rubbish or tidying up from the previous fixture
  • Heavy, dirty and extremely noisy when moving sightscreens
  • No boundary ropes
  • Missing bins and damaged swingback stumps
  • No repairs conducted to the outdoor nets facilities nor improvements to anti-vermin protection, pole cladding or pitch markings
  • Ball collection and safety netting permanently tied up and not able to be deployed
  • Legacy and broken/unsafe equipment and soiled clothing and shoes left within the facility for years to rot/clutter the space

Facilities - guidance

Below are some features relating to ECB and Sport England guidance on what a great pavilion should look like and the design considerations needed.

ECB Guidance - Overview

ECB Guidance - TS5 Document - Pavilions and Clubhouses

ECB Guidance - National Club Strategy

ECB Guidance - Grant Aid Funding Sources

ECB Guidance - TS3 Document - Indoor Facilities

Sport England - Pavilions and Clubhouse guidance

English Federation of Disability Sport:Access for all

Warwick Lacrosse Feedback "We can see the benefits of it for other sports, in particular cricket, considering the main Cryfield facility is a bit of a distance away. Warwick hold between around 2-3 tournaments a year, so in those cases the facilities would be beneficial."

David Robinson - on behalf of Coventry and North Warwickshire CC and former Cricket Development Manager for Warwickshire CC

"The pavilion certainly is too far away from both pitches but especially the further one (Lakeside) of the two. This makes tea time very problematic and we had to bring all the food to the side of the pitch on a number of occasions. A cup of tea was therefore out of the question! Many players did not shower after the game preferring to go back to CNW. The cost of hiring the pitch was also very expensive and not worth the charge in my opinion.We have since secured a pitch elsewhere which accomodates our need far better"

"As far as I can see, most, if not all of the other sports pitches at Warwick are very well catered for except cricket! It is a great shame because the two pitches there have tremendous potential but certain things need to happen first."

LastMan Stands - Warwickshire
"The pitch itself was fantastic with a great outfield. Both teams had to change on the boundary due the changing room being rather small. It would be brilliant if the facility could be moved closer to the playing area"

Disability, health, safety & gender equality

Warwick Ladies Cricket Club

What happened to the Warwick Ladies Cricket Club?

The University prior to 2013 had a Ladies cricket team that competed in BUCS (both indoor&outdoor), Varsity and Intermural competitions. The club in the past were very active having two BUCS squads and won Club of the year in 2004. Unfortunately the club closed down in 2013. Pitch side facilities at Cryfield surely have had a negative effect on the perception of the game here at Warwick.

Ladies cricket

Universities should encourage more girls to take up sport by being more sympathetic to the image-conscious world that young women grow up in. Sport England acknowledged that improvements in facilities could make a significant difference to women’s inclination to play sport, and their were concerns that for some women, such as Muslim women and those with disabilities, a lack of appropriate facilities was a major barrier to participation.

Reference Materials

Women in sport report

Womens Club Cricket - Warwickshire

Women and Sport - Factsheet

Mapping Disability 

Warwick Womens Cricket Alumni Feedback

"Not having toilets was a real issue and should be essential for women's sport. Because of the distance to the main pavilion we struggled to cater for after match tea. Kits are really heavy to lug around so a place to store it that's well ventilated as otherwise the pads get really sweaty and smelly and are horrible to put on next time."

Toilet Issues

Case studies:
- A medical school student was unable to join the medics cricket team in 2015 due to have IBD where he required immediate access to toilets
- Another player from ITSLIB CC during the Corporate Games suffered a IBD flare up and had to run to the main pavilion toilets in front of hundreds of people
- A player had to use the bushes to relieve himself on one occasion suffering from bowel urgency
- Current players urinate wherever they can

There are several groups of people, including people with Inflammatory Bowel Disease, who need easy access to toilets so I wonder if there might be an argument by way of the Equality Act 2010 which protects people who access goods, facilities or services from direct discrimination on the basis of a ‘protected characteristic’- disability being one of these protected characteristics.

The following link discusses disability discrimination, in particular indirect discrimination which means that a policy, criterion or practice is applied in the same way to all individuals, but that policy has an effect that particularly disadvantages disabled people.

The business would need to show that the policy can be objectively justified in other words, it must be a fair and reasonable way of achieving a legitimate aim.

Discrimination and private members clubs may be applicable:

The following organisations may be able to offer assistance:

Sport England

“all sports facilities should have at least one clearly signposted unisex accessible WC cubicle on every floor of the facility. Unisex provision allows people of either sex to give assistance, which is not possible when the accessible toilet provision is part of a dedicated male or female area.... Every part of a sports facility, including the pool or field, should be within 40m of a unisex accessible WC..... The scale and type of the facility will determine the number of accessible toilets."

Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
Promoting equality and help for people who have been discriminated against.

The British Toilet Association Limited
Provide help and assistance not just to specialist user groups who suffer from medical conditions that may require immediate access to the toilet.

uilding regs for toilets:

Citizen’s Advice Bureau

Our Students with IBD – A Guide for Universities has some general advice for Universities on their responsibilities to students with IBD so there may be some useful information in there that you can use, so I have attached a copy.

The Warwick University Student Union

Student Disability Services may be worth approaching as well:

BUCS Disability Sport

Peer review with other Universities

Our recommendations for April 2016 onwards...

  • Install 1x 4ft by 4ft portable chemical toilet to each of the Cryfield Cricket Pavilions (Roadside and Lakeside) - meeting minimum Health and Safety requirements - ESSENTIAL
  • Install 1x 150W solar power stations to each of the Cryfield Cricket Scoring Huts (Roadside and Lakeside) - Providing interior lighting plus an exterior security light in addition to low power charging/power of portable electronic devices - ESSENTIAL
  • Install 1x of either a external drinkable water tap or bottled water cooler (power requirements accepted) to each of the Cryfield Cricket Scoring Huts (Roadside and Lakeside) - ESSENTIAL  
  • Replace the existing legacy (heavy) covers used upon the Lakeside Cricket pitch (as per those much lighter units recently deployed upon the Roadside Cricket pitch) - ESSENTIAL
  • Service the very heavy and noisy sightscreens on both pitches or replace with lightweight mesh roller based systems - ESSENTIAL
  • Provide additional wet/hot weather protection through the deployment of permanent wooden gazebos adjaicent to each of the Cryfield Cricket Scoring Huts (Roadside and Lakeside) similar to this product (stained to match existing building) - DESIRABLE 
  • Provide at least 1x 4/6 seater picnic bench to each of the Cryfield Cricket Scoring Huts (Roadside and Lakeside) similar to this product (stained to match existing building) - ESSENTIAL
  • Replace existing scoreboards with units that do not require assembly before play commences - DESIRABLE
  • Check and replenish the exisiting First Aid Kits supplied within both of the scoring huts - ESSENTIAL
  • Check and replenish the cricket equipment held in the scoring huts or remove as desired - ESSENTIAL
  • Deploy an ID card based auto open/close system to the gate protecting the access road to the Lakeside Cricket Pitch - DESIRABLE
  • Provide a key (to Activator and nominated deputy) to the gate protecting the access road to the Lakeside Cricket Pitch - ESSENTIAL
  • Provide a key (to Activator and nominated deputy) to the Roadside Cricket Scoring Hut - ESSENTIAL
  • Confirm that vastly increased car parking will be allowed at the Lakeside Cricket Pitch - ESSENTIAL
  • Install a 2nd large bin to each of the Cryfield Cricket Scoring Huts (Roadside and Lakeside) - ESSENTIAL 
  • Deploy ball stop netting to both Roadside (especially with positioning of artificial pitch) & Lakeside Cricket pitches to prevent loss of expensive match balls/wasted game time - ESSENTIAL
  • Work to improve the underfoot surface of the path that leads to the Lakeside Cricket Pitch - DESIRABLE
  • Indoor - order 4x additional full length cricket matting for indoor nets and matches to replace existing tired faciltiy and/or allow for double matting to more closely mirror outdoor batting and bowling conditions - DESIRABLE
  • Indoor - replace/repair trolley poles as existing ones are bent and damaged and are a Health and Safety risk - ESSENTIAL
  • Clarify what provision (if any) will be put in place in relation to Cricket activities once the new Sports Centre has been built, with a particular focus on indoor nets and indoor fixtures, additionally will a 3rd pitch be incorporated into the new playing fields that are expected to be created at the same time? - ESSENTIAL
  • Explore the posibility of increased use of the Coventry University Cricket Facilities through central funding? Maybe this could be seen as an additional resource that Warwick could tap into? A pseudo 3rd ground? - ESSENTIAL
  • Funding - What provision of central funding will be offered to provide the Interdepartmental run Rock Up and Play Indoor Cricket Matches and to support the Rock Up and Play weekly nets sessions - ESSENTIAL
  • Free of charge pitch bookings - Current pitch hire fees of £90/200 plus will provide a barrier to participation plus an additional overhead on Captains/Activiators

Our recomendations to achieve a suitable cricket facility

  • New large pavilion situated between Roadside and Lakeside?
  • Two new medium sized pavilions replacing/supplementing existing Roadside and Lakeside Scoring Huts?
  • Two new medium-large sized pavilions replacing/supplementing existing Roadside and Lakeside Scoring Huts?
  • Electronic scoreboards?
  • Provision for car parking at both pavilions using existing acess roads and extending/reopening presently closed/restricted routes?
  • 2.4 x 4.8m per car allowance for each vehicle, perhaps up to 12 spaces?
  • As regards parking, perhaps the use of ground protection grids to protect the grass and preserve a more natural look, reduced cost and improved drainage whilst being more asthetically pleasing.
  • Pavilion design concepts/info
  • What could it all look like?

Funding options?

Estimated costings of 125K +VAT per pavilion plus any sundries....

  • Large corporate sponsorship and branding/naming rights
  • Fund raising exercises
  • National Lottery grants
  • Sport England funding
  • Grant aid options - WCB could guide us?
  • Part funding from Warwick Sport
  • District Cricket Boards
  • Coventry City Council
  • Local businesses
  • Onsite CCSG businesses
  • Chance to shine?

Any exisiting facilities we can take inspiration from?