The MCC has unveiled designs for its GBP50m redevelopment of the Compton and Edrich Stands at Lord's. This will form the next stage of the MCC's Masterplan aimed at completely upgrading the ground by 2032.
The new three-tier stands at the Nursery End of the ground, designed by architects WilkinsonEyre, will hold 11,500 spectators, increasing the capacity of Lord's by 2500. Planning application will be sought later this year, after consultation with local residents, and a vote of the MCC membership is expected at next year's AGM.
If approved, work on taking down the existing stands will begin after the 2019 Ashes Test; Lord's will also host the World Cup final earlier in the summer. The MCC hopes to have seating in place for the following season, with the full development scheduled for completion in 2021.
As well as providing partial covering for the top tier, thanks to a curved roof, and a walkway between the two structures that will overlook the Nursery Ground, the development will ensure that trees are still visible between the stands to members in the pavilion.
"MCC is committed to ensuring Lord's remains the best place in the world at which to watch and play cricket," MCC chief executive and secretary, Guy Lavender, said. "These new stands will transform the Nursery End, providing world-class facilities, opening up views both to the Pavilion and back towards the Nursery Ground, and adding another architectural enhancement to Lord's.
"We are very aware of the responsibility we have to protect everything that makes Lord's so special, and we are delighted with the positive feedback we've already received from our membership."
Last year saw the completion of the redesigned Warner Stand at Lord's, while the MCC also received final approval for its Masterplan, which will be funded from the club's own coffers. That led to the consortium that owns the tunnels under the Nursery Ground to announce a scheme to sell off parcels of land to members of the public.