Campaigners against plans to expand Edgbaston want Warwickshire County Cricket Club to leave Birmingham and build a new stadium in Solihull.
Balsall Heath Forum chairman Dick Atkinson, who is helping to co-ordinate opposition to the £32 million makeover of the cricket ground, argues that WCCC has outgrown its home and ought to investigate an out-of-town location close to the National Exhibition Centre “where it could expand” in the future. Dr Atkinson said the club was wrong to dismiss opposition to its improvement plan as a “small, vocal minority”, insisting that most of the 12,000 residents living in the catchment area are opposed to the scheme.
Opponents include Cannon Hill Forum, Balsall Heath Forum, Pershore Road and Benmore Residents Association, Russell Road Residents Association, Alexandra Road Residents Association and Moor Green Lane Residents Association.
Representatives packed a council planning committee meeting last week to see councillors refuse to grant approval for the new stands, pavilion, hospitality facilities, houses, flats, offices and hotels requested by WCCC.
The application will return for further consideration, probably next month, when it is likely to be met by a petition against the ground improvement plan signed by more than 5,000 people.
The opposition groups also intend to make a promotional video setting out their case.
Dr Atkinson claimed the cricket club’s ambition to expand and host more test matches and one-day internationals, along with the impact of traffic from the proposed housing and hotels development, threatened to devalue the neighbourhood and reduce house prices.