NCU logo
Northern Cricket Union
Charity Registration Number: NIC 106791

NCU Facebook Page
NCU Facebook Page
Message to all NCU Clubs - Grounds & Facilities


NCU Grounds Criteria 2021
NCU Match Day Report 2021

Over the past 18 months, a key element of the NCU strategy has been to support and encourage clubs in the development of their grounds and facilities. While aspects of this initiative have been impacted by the COVID 19 pandemic, significant progress has been made and we are now able to share further information with our clubs.

Soil Sampling:
This is a key initiative that cricket clubs across the world have been using for many years. Indeed, some NCU clubs have already undertaken with marked, positive results.

The NCU can now offer this initiative to ALL clubs.

March is a key time of the year to start this process and it is proposed that NCU takes soil samples from all grounds. These will be sent away for specialist investigation and a report will be compiled to include a bespoke action plan for each club depending on their individual outcomes.

The nominal cost for this bespoke service is £30.

For ease, the NCU will include this cost in your invoice for player registrations. Any 'owner' clubs who wish to opt-out of this service should email NCU at

Obviously, this excludes clubs who rent/lease from local authorities. The NCU is working on a plan for these clubs.

Michael Kennedy has agreed to oversee this process and will be in touch with each Club Secretary over the next week or so to arrange access to obtain samples

Specialist Ground maintenance:
The NCU are fortunate to have a number of experts in the area of ground maintenance and are now beginning to leverage that knowledge more fully for the benefit of all clubs. Neil Hunter, Philip McCormick and Michael Kennedy have all agreed to offer their services.

The NCU have purchased a high quality scarifier and aerator with the support of grants from the Department for the Communities and Sport Northern Ireland.

The NCU can now offer bespoke services undertaken by specialists as follows:

Deep scarification 
Bespoke service with 3-4 directions across the whole square.
Time: End of season
Cost: £50 per wicket

To be completed at least twice during the winter.
Cost: £40 per wicket for 2 visits.

Minimum of 7 bags of loam per wicket.
Cost £50 per wicket.

This is a two man job as large number of bags need to be lifted onto trailer out to the square, taken out of the trailer and then lifted into spreader.

The price includes seeding and brushing in, drag matting the square after topdressing, seeding and levelling batting ends and finished with fertilizer spreading.

Please note machinery cannot be hired independently out to be used by clubs.
Machinery must be used by NCU appointed persons.
Clubs to provide loam, seed and feed.

Surrey Loam Orders (Impact of Brexit)
The impact of Brexit on the transport and sale of goods including soil composition has been well documented and is subject of ongoing discussion between the NCU and key stakeholders including NI Executive departments. The NCU strongly advises clubs to make contact with their providers to discuss and agree their orders as a matter of urgency. The NCU can help support/direct where clubs do not have any current providers. Should any clubs wish to pursue this, please email NCU at

Match Day reports:
The current ground report form compiled by NIACUS and shared with NCU has been revised. Much work has been undertaken to ensure that these reports are current, specific and can help and support the further development of grounds and their facilities. These revised reports will be piloted in the 2021 domestic cricket season for all matches where official umpires are appointed.
(A copy of this report is attached for your information)

Ground Visits/Reports:
The existing 'Grounds Audit' Report which had not been reviewed for many years has also been updated.
Again, the NCU has used the combined expertise at our disposal to prepare the revised report. Club visits will be agreed over the next few months and outputs will be shared with individual clubs as part of their own development plans.
(A copy of this report is attached for your information)

I hope you will agree with me from the content of this communication that the NCU is fully committed to support the continued development of club grounds and facilities.
Should anyone have any further queries, please contact myself or Uel Graham

Alan Waite
On Behalf of NCU Domestic Cricket Directorate