The Haydn Road Community Cricket club is set to be a ‘hub’ of physical activity in the heart of the city, according to those behind the project.
The revitalised facility in Basford will throw open its doors to the public for the first time on Sunday 9th June with a launch festival.
The event, from 11am to 4pm, will include cricket taster sessions, children’s activities, bootcamp & dance class tasters, music and food.
Nottingham-based cricket agent Saimah Zaharah has been instrumental in engaging local people in the project, and she says it will be an invaluable facility for communities in the area.
“Before I became an agent a few years ago, I wasn’t interested in cricket, so I understand that you need to think like an outsider to get new people into the sport," said Zaharah.
“I’ve knocked on almost every door in the area and asked people what they wanted from a facility.
“We’ve made sure the location is right in the centre of the South Asian community, within walking distance for working parents with families.
"We’re organising All Stars Cricket coaching for children, we're setting up women's cricket sessions - we're doing everything we can to ensure that any boundaries to participation are broken down."
While cricket will be the focus of the venue, the intention is to approach the sport in a more inclusive way.
“A normal cricket club might have a first team, a second team and some age group cricket, but they don’t cater for everybody. That’s what makes this different,” added Zaharah.
“We’re putting on yoga classes, exercise sessions & boot camps, and we’re organising softball cricket activities to take place at the end of these sessions to get across the message that cricket is a game for anybody.”
The Haydn Road club sits on land owned by the Djanogly Learning Trust, with students already using some of the site’s cricket facilities.
This has made the Trust fully aware of the benefits participation in cricket can bring to the wider community.
"Some of our students are really keen on cricket and we’ve built a great relationship with Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club, so we are delighted to support this exciting initiative,” said Liz Anderson, Chief Executive Officer of the Djanogly Learning Trust.
“We are confident that this facility will contribute to the heart of the community, inspiring more young people and their families to participate in sport, bringing people together and having a positive impact on health and wellbeing.”
Find more information on the Haydn Road launch festival and register your attendance here.