BIG PLANS: Raby Castle CC hopes to replace its old pavilion and extend practice facilities
BIG PLANS: Raby Castle CC hopes to replace its old pavilion and extend practice facilities

A NEW pavilion planned by Raby Castle Cricket Club could cost up to £100,000.
Club secretary Steve Caygill told members of Staindrop Parish Council at their latest meeting of the plans to replace the aging pavilion with more modern facilities.
Over the past few years, the club has worked hard in getting the junior section off the ground, with numbers increasing from about 15 four years ago to 100 last season.
Mr Caygill said: “We have invested a lot of time and effort in the junior section as we were faced with the club going out of existence.
“It [the junior section] has grown exponentially and that has given us a bit of a problem.”
The 40-year-old pavilion, in the grounds of Raby Castle, needs replacing.
“It is a bit embarrassing that we have got a pavilion with a single toilet,” he said:
“Over the last couple of years we have not been able to use it because of Covid-19, but if we are to progress as a club, we need to up our facilities for our players and visitors.”
Estimates for a new timber framed club house with better facilities could be in the region of £80-£100,000, the parish council was told.
Although the club’s reserves will cover part of the cost, a significant amount of fundraising is still needed to meet the target.
Mr Caygill explained the normal route for big funding isn’t currently available and so the club is exploring other avenues for smaller donations and grants.
He added: “I have written to our MP, Teesdale Action Partnership, county councillors and the ECB at Durham Cricket Club and we are looking at small funding opportunities to make up the shortfall.
“It is really to get people onboard. If we can get money in small donations, we can add it to our own funding for the new pavilion.
“The club has a healthy set of accounts, but we have to consider things like mowers and other things that we need to keep on top of as a club. We would like to think we could put a big chunk in. We have in the region of about £40,000 in the bank.”
Changes at the castle mean the club will gain extra land which they are hoping to use as a practice area.
Mr Caygill added: “They are wanting to take down the section of fencing and we are going to get some more land and it could be good for us.
“What we really lack is a practice facility. Lord Barnard is quite amenable because you can’t see that from the castle.”
Cllr David Reed said: “I think you are doing a great job.”
Cllr Roger Humphries said the parish council should support the club and added: “There is also the section 106 money for the [Staindrop housing] development that could be used.”
Chairman Cllr Ian Royston said: “We appreciate the work going on but it would be good if a way could be found for the casual visitor could come along to matches.”
Mr Caygill explained the club staffs the main gates outside the castle’s opening times to ensure players and visitors can gain entry.
He said: “We have someone on the gate with a key fob as security is important. So anyone who wants to come from the village can.”