Common FAQs on facility management:
Providing and maintaining safe, high-quality playing surfaces is hugely important, be they fine turf, non-turf or indoor practice facilities.
We are committed to raising standards in all areas of our game, including achieving the best possible playing surfaces at all grounds from the smallest club to major Test venues.
The ECB’s recommended guidelines for the construction, preparation and maintenance of cricket pitches and outfields (PDF) at all levels of the game sets out procedures and methods for ground care related to fine turf pitches and outfields.
The guidelines contained in the above document can be used as a general guide to all aspects of construction, management, maintenance and pitch preparation of cricket grounds.
Club groundsmen can use their knowledge of local conditions to adapt the recommended guidelines to suit their site.
Further support is available through the network of County Pitch Advisors and County Groundsman Associations. For more information, speak to your local County Cricket Board.
For clubs managing both cricket and football on the same site, the ECB worked with the FA, Sport England and the IOG (Institute of Groundsmanship) to produce this useful guide (PDF) to help ensure both sports can enjoy a long future working together.
Our Performance Standards for Non-Turf Cricket Pitches Intended for Outdoor Use (PDF) describe the requirements for outdoor non-turf/synthetic cricket pitch systems, specifically practice areas and match pitches.
There are currently no stated standards for outfields.
Additional non-turf guidance for clubs
The following two documents offer additional guidance for clubs and ground staff around non-turf pitch provision and installation, and managing wider facility projects.
Our guidance for purchase of a non-turf pitch (PDF) is essential reading to help you understand non-turf pitches and the preparation work required prior to obtaining contractor quotes.
In addition, we also have helpful tips for developing your project (PDF) and taking it from concept to completion.
Code of practice for design and installation of non-turf cricket facilities
The voluntary Code of Practice (PDF) for ECB approved non-turf pitch system suppliers sets out the recommended minimum standards for designers, installers and suppliers of approved systems.
ECB approved non-turf pitch systems and suppliers
Download and read our full list of ECB approved non-turf pitch systems and suppliers (PDF).
Any enquiries relating to the list of ECB approved non-turf pitch systems should be directed to email@example.com.
Indoor – developing the right sports hall
The ECB is charged with implementing a strategy across all forms and levels of the game.
Central to this is the provision of high-quality locally available indoor practice facilities with year-round access to these facilities for players.
Our guidance on indoor sports halls with cricket provision (PDF) provides practical advice for clients and designers on the issues that need to be considered when designing indoor sports halls with cricket provision.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information if you are looking to develop an indoor project.
Floods can have a devastating impact on a cricket club, causing damage to both pavilions and grounds.
The ECB provides advice and support for affected clubs in these situations, whether it be significant damage to buildings and machinery or deposits of sediment and waste on outfields and squares.
For up-to-date information about dealing with flooding and how to access support from the ECB, visit www.ecb.co.uk/flooding
As changes to our climate occur there may be occasions when clubs need to operate under drought restrictions imposed by water companies such as Temporary Use Bans or even Drought Orders.
Water is used in the preparation of fine turf pitches to help to achieve the required playing characteristics and to maintain safety.
Water should only ever be used in an effective and efficient way. We have worked with our partner the Grounds Management Association (GMA) to provide best practice advice on how to water effectively and efficiently – you can find that advice here.
Note that there are exemptions to some drought restrictions in order to maintain safe playing conditions. Advice on how to comply with drought restrictions and where exemptions to restrictions apply, please refer to guidance on the Grounds Management Association Toolkit for cricket grounds managers here.
A well-run food and beverage operation can really help your cricket club’s sustainability. Our guide to food and beverage management in cricket clubs (PDF) outlines some tried-and-tested options for providing food and beverages, which have been widely and successfully adopted by many cricket clubs.
Although aimed mainly at bar managers and club treasurers, this advice is equally relevant to all club members involved in food and beverage operations.
Allergens in food served
All food businesses are obligated to provide allergen information about the food they provide. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has detailed advice if you’re unsure as to whether or not your club is considered a food business and should therefore register with your local authority. The FSA also provides guidance on regulatory developments related to allergen information.
What is a CASC?
Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) are amateur sports clubs that are registered with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The CASC scheme exists in order to distinguish between amateur sports clubs in the community and businesses to help ensure that sports clubs are treated fairly and benefit from a range of tax reliefs and that money stays within sport. The average cash benefit to clubs registered under the CASC scheme is £4,000 per year.
Similar benefits might also be available to you if you register as a charity although most cricket clubs have chosen CASC status – see here for a full comparison of CASC and charity status for clubs.
How does your club benefit?
On becoming a CASC, your club will benefit from the following:
- 80% mandatory business rate relief
- The use of Gift Aid and the Gift Aid Small Donations scheme (see below)
- Exemption from corporation tax on trading profits if your trading income is below £50,000 per year, and on property income if it is below £30,000 per year
- Companies can receive corporation tax relief on donations to CASCs
Criteria for becoming a CASC in England and Wales
- Your sport must be recognised by the Sports Councils, e.g Sport England and Sport Wales
- Your club must have an open membership policy
- Cost of participation must be affordable at less than £520 per year. If not, provision must be made for those who can’t afford it
- Your club must promote and provide facilities for amateur sports participation
- More than 50% of members must participate fully in the sport
- Your club must not exceed the non-member income limit of £100,000. Larger clubs which exceed this limit need to set up a trading subsidiary to be a CASC
- Your club must be non-profit making – any profits must be reinvested into the club
- In the event your club is wound up, your constitution must state that any remaining assets be distributed for use broadly in community sport or to another CASC
- The club must be managed by fit and proper persons
Applying to become a CASC
If your club wishes to become a CASC, you will need to complete an application form via GOV.UK and return it to HMRC along with a copy of your club constitution and other documents which must adhere to the criteria set out above. Please see here for further details on applying for CASC status.
By becoming a CASC you will be eligible to claim Gift Aid on individual donations to your club in the same way as for charities. CASC membership fees and subscriptions do not qualify as donations.
Gift Aid works by providing income tax relief to individuals who provide a donation to your club at the same time as allowing the club to claim income tax on the donation from HMRC. Your club will receive £25 for every £100 donated by anyone who pays income tax. If an individual is a 40% higher rate taxpayer, they will also be refunded £25 for every £100 they donate to a CASC.
Gift Aid small donations
If your CASC is claiming Gift Aid successfully it can also use the Gift Aid Small Donations scheme (GASDS) to claim back 25p in £1 on small cash donations to the CASC but without the paperwork required when claiming Gift Aid. Visit the dedicated CASC site for further help and info on Gift Aid and GASDS.
Online giving providers – for example, BT MyDonate, Virgin Money Giving and JustGiving – allow you to collect donations in a simple and easy-to-manage way by setting up a fundraising page for members and supporters to give online. It costs you absolutely nothing but different providers charge varying fees.
These websites are set up to manage Gift Aid on donations. The provider does all the work to enable you to receive tax refunds from HMRC, who will check the provider’s Gift Aid procedures rather than yours.
Setting up an online giving page for your cricket club will allow you to properly communicate why you are fundraising. You will also be given helpful tips on the best way to tell people about your page.
Local authorities will automatically give your club 80% rate relief when you register; this is mandatory. If they are already providing discretionary rate relief (DRR), they can top up your mandatory relief by 20% so that you pay nothing.
Developing your club’s facilities is an exciting and worthwhile venture and, when funded and managed correctly, will contribute to its long-term sustainability.
Tips for developing your project
All successful projects involve careful advance planning and mapping. Here is some advice to help you when starting out:
- Seek advice from specialists – e.g. ECB facilities staff, industry consultants, etc. Contact email@example.com for initial advice and direction
- Design the scheme according to the key requirements and characteristics. This includes specifications, technical briefing notes, drawings, etc. based on your site conditions
- The proposed design should be reviewed by the ECB or the funding authority prior to committing to estimates or quotations
- Make a realistic financial commitment and assess whether you can afford to maintain the facility you are designing
- Think about how the project will accommodate the current and future needs of your club
Our guide to developing your facility project (PDF) provides further direction on how to manage your project from start to finish.
In addition, our Developing Your School Site guide (PDF) will assist schools and designers in planning indoor and outdoor cricket facilities, from sports halls to fine turf and non-turf provision.
For advice specific to pavilion and clubhouse projects, download our technical guidance notes for pavilions and clubhouses (PDF).
It is worth considering that any planned improvement to facilities, be it fine turf works, non turf practice, buildings or even advertising may require planning permission.
Any club that is considering a project to build a new facility or make a change to your existing facilities should download and read Sport England’s guide to making a planning application for sports clubs (PDF).