'We will rebuild' - Trustee of West Yorkshire cricket club which burnt to ground vows to rebuild facilities from the ashes

Olicanian Cricket Club
Olicanian Cricket Club
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The trustee of a cricket club which burnt to the ground has vowed to help rebuild the facilities following the devastating fire.

-> Children left with nowhere to go for pre-school nursery after cricket club facilities burnt to ground

The fire at Olicanian Cricket Club in Ilkley in the early hours of Sunday (August 26) has left the club in ashes, with shocking photographs showing the horrific damage to the site.

Mark Dexter, 56, is a trustee at the club and has been involved since the early 1980s.

He said the fire has had a huge impact on the community.

Mark said: "There are people at the club who have been involved since the 70s and 80s.

"The facilities have helped us change from a humble cricket club to a club that is in the cup final tomorrow.

"We have improved the facilities over years and are a club which is starting to produce juniors into professionals and even county players.

"It has been devastating."

The pavilion at the club was let to All Saints Nursery - who have 35 kids due back in two weeks for a new term.

Mark added: "They have now been left with nowhere to go.

"The children will need to seek alternatives unfortunately."

Mark said fundraising will be a huge help to club, who will have to put in 'a lot of time, money and effort' to help rebuild.

He added: "We are going to need a lot of moral and emotional support.

"The most upsetting things is the club is home to 100 kids during the junior season who play for all-stars.

"It is part of the hub of Ilkley.

"It is as much a blow to Ilkley as anything.

"That club was full of memorabilia over 80 or 90 years which has gone up in smoke.

"It is so devastating for everyone involved."

The clubhouse opened 12 years ago, Mark said.

Over the years, famous names including Steve Harmison have graced the facilities.

Mark said: "We will rebuild."