Durham announce floodlight plans to bolster Cricket World Cup host plans

The  Emirates Durham ICG, Chester-le-Street.

The Emirates Durham ICG, Chester-le-Street.

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RESIDENTS get the chance to have their say on Durham County Cricket Club’s plans to install permanent floodlights at its Chester-le-Street ground tomorrow.

The Emirates riverside ground is England’s only international cricket ground without consent for permanent floodlights and if they are not in place by 2019 the county will be unable to host games in the ICC World Cup.

The proposals are for six, 55m-high floodlight pylons to be used a maximum of 20 times a season and a public consultation on the plans will take place between 4pm and 7pm tomorrow, Thursday February 26, at the ground.

The consultation and planning process is being handled by the Newcastle office of planning and economics consultancy Nathaniel Lichfield & Partners (NLP).

Senior planner Dominic Smith said: “Permanent floodlights are an essential requirement for the club to host World Cup matches and other major events such as Day/Night One-Day Internationals, T20’s and T20 Finals Day, as dictated by the ECB.

“Emirates Durham ICG is now the only international ground in the country which doesn’t have consent for permanent floodlighting and risks falling behind its competitors.

“The competition to stage international and major domestic matches is highly competitive and a number of older grounds, such as Old Trafford and Headingly have undergone multi-million pound redevelopments to keep pace with new International venues such as the Swalec Stadium in Cardiff and the Ageas Bowl in Southampton.

“Emirates Durham ICG has been successfully hosting international cricket for over a decade. The ground has had considerable success in attracting major events and has recently been provisionally allocated as one of the venues for the 2019 World Cup.”

For those unable to attend tomorrow’s consultation, there is a short survey on the club’s official website.