A TOWN cricket club’s ongoing recovering from an arson attack has won the support of the sport’s national governing body.

MP Helen Goodman facilitated a meeting between officials from Spennymoor Cricket Club and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) last week.

The club’s wooden pavilion and most of its equipment was destroyed by the fire last July.

The ECB offered funding towards temporary short term facilities and to support longer term development and funding opportunities.

Durham County and Spennymoor Town Councillor Ian Geldard, president of Spennymoor Cricket Club, said: “The expert advice received from the ECB has been invaluable. The offer of funding for a temporary solution for facilities at Spennymoor Cricket Club will ensure that our club’s immediate future is assured. The guidance and support offered to embark upon a Community Club Pavilion project is not only an exciting prospect for Spennymoor Cricket Club, but also for Spennymoor itself.”

The meeting came about after the Bishop Auckland MP, whose constituency includes Spennymoor, talked about the damage in Parliament.

Hannah Murphy, head of public policy at the ECB was watching the session and offered to help the club.

Ms Goodman said: “This is fantastic news for the club.

“I think people see MPs raising local issues in Parliament and a lot of the time they assume nothing comes of it. But within minutes of talking about the problems the club were facing, I had a message from the ECB. There are always a lot of things happening behind the scenes after a speech is made, and I’m so glad that this has resulted in a positive outcome for Spennymoor.”

Cllr Geldard said the ECB advised the club to get better emergency accommodation before working on a long term plan to secure the future of cricket in the town.

Following the incident, site owners Spennymoor Town Council received an insurance payout of around £70,000 but that is unlikely to cover the full cost of a replacement brick clubhouse.

The club has led a community fundraising drive which has so far raised £11,000.

A ECB spokesperson said: “We are very supportive of Spennymoor Cricket Club’s plan to rebuild the pavilion. The club has a strong history and we want to see them reaching out across the whole community to thrive in future.”

Spennymoor Cricket Club is a well-supported club, playing in the Darlington and District Cricket League.

It has 50 playing members, including many thriving youth players. At the height of the season, over 200 people attend the ground on match day. The club has played at the field for almost 70 years. Since the fire, they have continued to play at the ground with the support of other teams in the league.