Sobraon cricket pitch approved [U1]

— Updated with City of Lincoln Council and University of Lincoln statements:

The City of Lincoln Council has agreed at an Executive meeting on November 22 to allow development of facilities at the Sobraon cricket pitch off Burton Road.

A new pavilion in the south-west corner of the field will be developed together with the University of Lincoln, who will have a 25-year heads of terms lease.

A planning application is yet to be formally submitted.

As previously reported, the plans for the Sobraon cricket field look at building a pavilion with various facilities, as well as different training pitches.

Alongside cricket matches, the field is also used as a community area for dog walkers and children to play safely in the green.

The City Council hopes the pitch will be used for all types of players across the county, but especially women’s cricket and by those with disabilites.

The University of Lincoln have also stepped forward to support the development, looking to lease the field from the council once it is complete.

The council have ring-fenced a £124,800 investment, while the university will invest £60,000 and is seeking a £70,000 grant from the English Cricket Board (ECB).

Some people living in the area had mixed feelings about the development of the cricket ground, worrying that the field would be taken from them.

Both the council and university have assured locals that they will still be allowed to use the field, apart from when matches are taking place.

Councillor Alister Williams from the City of Lincoln Council said the lease will help unlock funds to provide a purpose-built pavilion on site.

“There is still a lot of work to be done, but this is a very exciting opportunity and is a sensible use of council funds because of the significant input we will get from our partners at the university.

“Partnership work is crucial to the development of sports facilities in the city, this has already proved successful at the excellent new Sports Hub at Yarborough.

“We believe that as well as providing great value for money this will also encourage people of all ages to get active,” Williams added.

Robin Wright, Director of Sport at the University of Lincoln, said: “We are currently in the process of trying to regenerate the cricket ground that has been at the Sobraon barracks site for over sixty years.

“We have worked with the City Council, Lincolnshire Cricket Board and the ECB to establish a partnership that will enable young people to play cricket.”