Howzat for a spectacle?

By on 05/08/2009 in Blog

Following the completion of the Third Ashes Test at Edgbaston, Cllr Neville Summerfield, Birmingham City Council's Cabinet Member for Regeneration, has spoken of the importance of the city retaining Test status into the future.

“When you see the tens of thousands of fans and hundreds of media flocking to the Test Match, there can be little doubt about how important it is that Birmingham continues to host such major sporting events into the future. 

“Not only will the Ashes Test generate an estimated £5 million worth of direct spending into the local economy, but for a week we will be in the international spotlight, providing a virtually unparalleled level of exposure for the city and all those within it.

“Of course we are not blind to impact that hosting such events can have on both the city and local community where they are staged. As a responsible local authority we are here just as much to serve the interests of residents living in the shadow of the ground, we are the wider city and economy. 

“That is why as they strive to make the necessary improvements to Edgbaston needed to secure test status, we have urged Warwickshire County Cricket Club to talk to local people and do all they can to develop their plans in partnership with them. 

“Whether the visiting team is from Australia, India, Pakistan or beyond, Test Match cricket also plays a great role in bringing communities together, both inside the ground and beyond. Adding to the local 'feel good factor' generated by the matches themselves - especially when England are winning! 

“I can think of nothing worse than standing in the shadows ruing the missed opportunities as the likes of London, Cardiff, Leeds, Nottingham and Manchester reap all the rewards of hosting test cricket for themselves. 

“If we are serious about not only keeping existing highlights of Birmingham's sporting calendar, but also attracting even bigger and more beneficial events in the future, then retaining test status is crucial. This is why it is vital that the City Council does all it can to work with Warwickshire County Cricket Club to ensure that whatever improvements needed to Edgbaston to satisfy the ECB are made.


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