Marylebone Cricket Club September 13, 2004

Refurbishment of Lord's pavilion gets underway

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Lord's pavilion: no more comings and goings for a while © Getty Images

The historic 19th-century pavilion at Lord's is to be closed down on Monday afternoon, for a six-month refurbishment project that will restore the building to pristine condition ahead of next summer's Ashes series.

The pavilion, designed by Thomas Verity and built in 1889-90, is being done up at a cost of around £8.2million. That represents the biggest refurbishment in the building's history, and takes MCC's overall expenditure on ground improvements past the £50million mark since its bicentenary in 1987.

To enable the contractors to press ahead with the project, the pavilion will be completely shut to MCC staff, club members and the general public until mid-March 2005. It has never previously been closed for any such length of time; even during the two World Wars. In 1914-18, the Long Room was used to produce hay-nets for Army horses, and in 1939-45, it was used for aircrew training.

Among the changes in prospect will be the creation of a new roof terrace, the redecoration of the Long Room and the reinstatement of its fireplaces, and the two pavilion turrets being brought back into use.