County news March 23, 2005

Final Lancashire ground move decision soon

Cricinfo staff



Lancashire are now likely to stay at Old Trafford © Getty Images
Lancashire have said a final decision on whether they will relocate to East Manchester will be made by the end of the summer. The idea was first suggested towards the end of 2003, but the timing of a final announcement has been constantly put back by feasibility studies and negations with Trafford Council.

Jim Cumbes, the chief executive, said: "I can't see it dragging on much longer. We will definitely have made a decision by mid or late summer." After the initial excitement created by the idea, the chances of the move going ahead have rapidly diminished. It would have seen Lancashire join Manchester City at the Sportcity complex, used for the Commonwealth Games.

The current location of the club, just half a mile away from Manchester United, has its advantages. The Metrolink tram stops just outside the ground, and the association with a famous football club has boosted the club's finances, especially during the winter months, with hospitality and the Old Trafford Lodge being particularly successful.

Recent work at Old Trafford has also suggested that the prospect of a move is disappearing. Another stand as been demolished, temporary seating will take the capacity to 22,000 for the Ashes Test, and the likely decision will be to plough more money into the current ground.

Comments