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MCC rules out renaming of Lord's

Lord's cricket ground
Lord's has hosted Test matches since 1884

The owners of Lord's say they are not planning to sell the stadium's naming rights to finance a £400m redevelopment of the famous venue.

The redevelopment plans will in part be funded by flats around the stadium, but the MCC says it will not even look at selling rights for individual stands.

MCC chief executive Keith Bradshaw told BBC Radio 5 live: "There's no way we would rename Lord's.

"It's the home of cricket, the hallowed turf. It's not an option at all."

He added: "It's something that we wouldn't consider, and in fact I even have a real problem even considering renaming the stands within the ground that are now dedicated to famous cricketers.


"It's not on the agenda, it's not on the cards and there's no way we'll be going down that path."

The plans for Lord's, entitled Vision for Lord's, include increasing the capacity from 30,000 to 37,000, installing retractable floodlights, an underground cricket academy and expanded museum.

The work is expected to start in 2011 at the earliest and will take 10 years to complete.

And although the redevelopment will require a large sum of money, Bradshaw insists the traditions of the venue are more important than revenue.

"To play at Lord's is a very special experience, Lord's has such a wonderful history and tradition and it's those traditions that we need to preserve," he added.

"The stands are named after Denis Compton and Bill Edrich and Sir Pelham Warner. They're very famous names and I couldn't see the day, certainly in my time, when we'd want to be naming them after a sponsor.

"I do feel to a degree that would be selling our soul. We have so much to offer at Lord's and I think it's about protecting our history for the future.

"Whatever we do in terms of the vision, it's cricket-led, it's not commercial-led. We've taken a lot of things into consideration in terms of the design, not from a commercial perspective, but a cricket perspective.

"We want Lord's to continue to be the best ground in the world and we believe that we need to move with the times and make some developments, but keep that ambience and the things that make it very special to come to Lord's."

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Lord's bids to secure Test future
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Lord's seeks major redevelopment
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Surrey unveil new plans for Oval
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Lord's set for 20m redevelopment
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