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Kent unveil vision for St Lawrence future

An artist's impression of what the new St Lawrence ground would look like. A more detailed explanation can be found at the base of the story. Picture courtesy: Jon Fordham.
An artist's impression of what the new St Lawrence ground would look like. A more detailed explanation can be found at the base of the story. Picture courtesy: Jon Fordham.

KENT County Cricket Club members have been given their first glimpse of a £7million vision for the redevelopment of their historic St Lawrence Ground headquarters.

With the club £310,000 in debt and anticipating further losses this year, the ambitious plans aim to increase revenue and make better use of the 136-year-old ground on the Old Dover Road, Canterbury.

The main principles of the redevelopment plan are:

* The sale of two pockets of land for new homes;
* Development of a 120-bedroom, four-star hotel;
* New health and fitness centre with swimming pool;
* Conference centre for 300 delegates;
* Refurbishment of the Chiesman Pavilion, Annexe and Woolley stands;
* New front-of house club offices, shops and cricket museum;
* Six permanent floodlights.

Introducing the plans, designed by Canterbury-based architect Andrew Clague, Kent chairman Carl Openshaw said 11 other counties were in the process of re-modelling their grounds.

He said: "County cricket alone no longer generates sufficient income to enable us to field a team capable of competing at the level that we and our members expect."

Outline plans can be viewed on the club website.

Explaining the picture:

Front centre is the Bat and Ball pub, with the new entrance plaza behind it. Right is the Bat and Ball Field with the new housing development.

To the left of the plaza is the new health and fitness centre and between that and the ground is the hotel.

Anti-clockwise from the plaza is the new museum, club shop, cricket equipment store and pharmacy, and behind that the tented building is the new office block.

To the right of that is the annexe, dressing room block, Chiesman Pavilion, Woolley Stand, Cowdrey Stand and conference centre.

* FOR A DETAILED ACCOUNT OF THE PLANS SEE THIS WEEK'S KENTISH GAZETTE.

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