03 Feb

Contractors have started work on a cricket club’s new clubhouse, 18 months after its former pavilion was destroyed in an arson attack in August 2019. 

Work on the new pavilion at Olicanian Cricket Club, based in Ilkley in West Yorkshire, began last week. The building is expected to be completed in September 2021 and will be fully equipped for the start of the outfit’s centenary season in 2022. 

George Alexander Properties of Cowling Hill, North Yorkshire, is the main contractor. 

Joint owner of the business, Nick Kenyon, said: “We’re excited and proud to be the contractor on this build. 

“What happened to Olicanians was truly awful and we’ll be working hard to build something that the cricket club and the whole of Ilkley can be proud of for years to come.” 

The design by local architectural practice Horsley Townsend accommodates the fact that the clubhouse sits in the flood plain, something which led to the planning process taking more than eight months. 

Club trustee James Turner, who has overseen the project, said: “The design has lots of features which allows the building to cope with increased flood risk. Our old pavilion was never flooded but, in these times of climate change, we have had to allow for the possibility that this might be a challenge in the future. Several flood resilience measures have been incorporated into the design, including raising the floor level by 1.5 metres, and re-modelling of external levels to accommodate any excess floodwater.” 

The clubhouse will have a kitchen, bar and lounge area and will be able to cater for dinners for more than 80 people as well as changing rooms, showers and storage areas. 

So far, the Denton Road site has been cleared, hardstanding put down and initial work has started on getting the utilities in place. 

“It’s great news,” said club chairman David House. “It’s been a long road back from the fire and the last 18 months have, without doubt, been the most difficult in the club’s history. 

“A huge amount of work has gone on behind the scenes, not only to create a new building that is fit for purpose, but also one that complies with modern planning regulations,” he said.   

John Stephenson 


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