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Populous to submit £21m Lord’s overhaul plans

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Populous is to submit detailed plans to overhaul Lord’s Warner Stand, starting the first part a £200 million regeneration masterplan for the world famous London cricket ground

The high-profile project was approved last week after Marylebone Cricket Club members vetoed an independent inquiry into failed redevelopments by AHMM and Herzog and de Meuron.

More than 6,000 MCC members voted against the inquiry and in favour of continuing the latest redevelopment masterplan.

Populous’ vision to upgrade the Warner Stand is now expected to be submitted to local authority City of Westminster Council within weeks.

A spokesman for the club said: ‘Members have spoken very clearly that they want to move forward with our masterplan and Populous is very close to submitting planning.

The  project is part of a phased redevelopment for the venue’s comprehensive regeneration which will increase capacity by 2,700 to 32,000 and is planned to complete with the reconstruction of the Compton and Edrich Stands in 2027.

The spokesman added: ‘Once [the Warner Stand redevelopment] takes shape [the MCC] will likely hold a competition for architects. The next project will be the Tavern and Allen stands.’

Herzog & de Meuron’s £400 million masterplan to create an all-weather facility and seating for 37,000 was abandoned two years ago.

The masterplan includes:

  • Rebuilt Warner, Tavern & Allen, Compton and Edrich Stands;
  • The resiting of the Nursery Ground towards the Wellington Road, over the Club’s leasehold land;
  • A new entrance on Grove End Road which will be the main point of access on non-match days, and will supersede the Grace Gates as the Members’ entrance on match days;
  • Extensions to the Pavilion to reinstate its symmetry and establish more pitch-facing facilities for players and match officials;
  • An increase to the capacity of Lord’s by 2,700 to 32,000;
  • New buildings at the North, East and Grace Gates incorporating banqueting facilities, retail space and offices for MCC and ECB staff;
  • A new Food “Street” behind the Compton and Edrich Stands to replace the existing Food Village; and
  • New, subterranean car-parking, access routes, waste management, catering and storage facilities.


Populous was hired to work up alternative plans for Lord’s cricket ground in April 2012 following the collapse of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris’s (AHMM) redevelopment vision.

In November 2011, the 225-year-old cricket club officially abandoned a revised version of the masterplan by AHMM and developer Almacantar which featured four residential blocks, a colonnade and new indoor academy, allowing the club to expand its capacity from 28,000 to 33,000.

In October 2012 Herzog and de Meuron proposed a redevelopment plan incorporating luxury apartments and an extension to neighbouring Wellington hospital. A previous £400 million masterplan by Herzog & de Meuron for the west London venue was shelved in 2011.

Populous principal and Olympic Stadium designer Philip Johnson previously worked on a 2006 masterplan for the Lord’s. The outfit was also hired to transform the Lord’s for archery during the 2012 London Olympics.


Construction phases

The first period of construction work will include:

  • The rebuilding of the Warner stand with an addition of 700 new seats, due for completion in 2016;
  • The establishment of a new Garden Entrance through the existing car park in  Grove End Road, starting in 2014, and completed in 2017, alongside improved and enlarged Museum, Library and Reception facilities; and
  • New Tavern and Allen Stands including 2,000 new seats, a new Thomas Lord Building, and extensions to the Pavilion. These works are due to start in 2016, and will be completed in time for the 2019 ICC World Cup. ECB staff will be temporarily relocated to the new Thomas Lord Building.

After a pause to host the ICC World Cup, the second period of construction work will commence at the end of the 2020 season, and will entail:

  • A new Food “Street” behind the back of the Compton and Edrich Stands;
  • In 2021, a new East Gate building, including a subterranean service entrance, and housing banqueting and retail facilities, due for completion in 2024;
  • The removal of the Nursery Pavilion and extension of the Nursery Ground onto the Club’s leasehold land – for use by the 2025 season;
  • A new North Gate building to house ECB, starting in 2024 and complete by 2027; and
  • Reconstruction of the Compton and Edrich Stands to establish better-quality seating, with potential extra flexible capacity, commencing in 2027.
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