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Ryan Sidebottom doing the honours on Sunday

Ryan Sidebottom will formally open Olicanian Cricket Club’s new pavilion on Sunday. (Image: OCC Facebook)

Former Yorkshire and England bowler, Ryan Sidebottom, will formally open Olicanian Cricket Club’s new pavilion on Sunday, May 22.

The ex-England paceman will unveil a plaque at 1.00pm, prior to the start of a match between an Olicanian Select XI and a team of overseas and local players drawn from across the Airedale and Wharfedale Senior League. The match starts at 1.30pm.

The teams will compete for the Olicanian Ashes - a trophy containing two charred cricket bails which have been mounted in oak and glass.

The bails were retrieved from the wreckage of the club’s former pavilion and are all that remains of the former clubhouse and its contents following an arson attack in August 2019.

Club president Mick Christopher said: “We’re honoured that Ryan has agreed to open our new pavilion. It’s a building of which we are rightly proud and we are grateful to have a former England and Yorkshire player doing the honours.

“We’d like to invite everyone to come down and have a look at our fantastic new building. There’s going to be a real party atmosphere at the ground on Sunday and we want the public of Ilkley and beyond to enjoy the building and the day with us,” he added.

As well as the match and the official opening, there will be entertainment from Otley Brass Band prior to the start of play and during the tea interval. Club members and junior parents have also been encouraged to take part in a competition to bake cakes with a cricketing theme. These will be exhibited in the clubhouse on the day.

The pavilion took around 15 months to build and cost more than half a million pounds. The build was funded through a variety of donations, an insurance pay-out and some financial support from the England and Wales Cricket Board and Sport England.

The pavilion design is the work of Ilkley architect Bill Horsley. Addingham builder Nick Kenyon was the main contractor.


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