Lords Cricket Ground

Members recommended to reject residential development at famous cricket ground



The MCC Committee has recommended to its members that the next stage of redevelopment at Lord’s Cricket Ground should be funded from its own resources rather than be paid for through a residential development.

The recommendation was made following clear feedback from MCC members as part of a wide consultation as to how it plans to fund the next stage of redevelopment at Lord’s.

Members will be asked to approve the committee’s resolution (the MCC Updated Masterplan) at a special general meeting to be held on Wednesday 27th September. 

Members will choose between the two recommendations: the MCC Updated Masterplan, which will see the redevelopment funded by the club’s own resources, and the Morley Plan, which will fund the redevelopment by building residential flats at the Nursery End of the ground.

The committee’s recommendation follows a two-year process which involved advice from nine independent specialist consultants as well as a review where many members clearly implied that a residential development would harm the character of the ground.

“Put simply, the club can afford to develop the ground using its own resources and it will do so in the coming years without the need for enabling residential development,” said Gerald Corbett, chairman of the MCC.

“The Morley scheme, with flats at its heart, was considered by the committee to detract from the ambience and special feel of Lord’s, as well [as] containing a number of operational, security, execution and planning risks. 

“Moreover, the club’s advisers were unable to recommend the proposed commercial terms.”

Mr Corbett added that although the Morley scheme offered a potential cash windfall, the committee considered the flats and the effect on the ground’s character too big a price to pay to take the risk.

“The committee also considered the advice of its five principal sub-committees, who all recommended to implement the club’s updated masterplan and to reject flats and the Morley scheme.

“Being new to the committee – and this issue – two years ago, I have had the opportunity to ask questions, to get into the detail and to listen to the full range of opinion as to what is best for the future of Lord's. 

“The consultation events and survey responses are unequivocal – members do not want flats at Lord's and they want [the] MCC to continue ground development through its own finances.”

The programme for the next stage of the development will also be voted on by members in September with the committee recommending that the next development should be the replacement of the Compton and Edrich stands.

The MCC’s members will be asked to approve this and each component of the updated masterplan as it evolves and once planning permission has been granted by Westminster City Council.

The replacement of the two stands is expected to be completed in June 2021 and would lead to an increase in Lord’s capacity. 

“All members have been consulted,” said Mr Corbett. 

“Many have spoken.

“The committee has decided. 

“The club will now vote and we will then move on.”


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