Hopes high weather won't halt international cricket and the Yorkshire Show - but other events fall victim (From Durham Times)
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Hopes high weather won't halt international cricket and the Yorkshire Show - but other events fall victim
CLEANING UP: Water blotters at work on the pitch at Durham Cricket ground in Chester-le- Street ahead of today's game
CRICKET fans are hoping the weather will not hit them for six ahead of today’s fourth One Day International at Chester-le-Street.
England take on Australia at the Emirates Durham International Cricket Ground and there have been fears among fans about the match going ahead.
However, David Harker, Durham CCC chief executive, was in positive mood yesterday as ground staff removed water from Thursday’s downpour from the outfield.
“As we stand here at the moment, it is probably the most positive it has been for a little while,” he said. “We are going to have 15,000 to 17,000 in here and they have come to enjoy a cricket match. Cricket is our national summer sport and it would be nice to think that summer would finally arrive tomorrow in the North-East.”
Organisers of the Great Yorkshire Show, which begins in Harrogate on Tuesday, have raised concerns about the weather, but say they remain optimistic.
A spokesperson said: “The weather is causing us concerns, mainly because our car parks are all on grass.
“We are looking for some additional hard-standing to give extra support, and at this point, we are still hoping it will go ahead as normal.”
Elsewhere, other events have already fallen victim tot the weather.
Today’s York 800 flotilla and Sunday’s Dragon Boat races on the River Ouse in York have been cancelled, while the opening of a £157,000 skatepark has also been postponed.
Thirsk8 Park will now be offically opened on July 21 at 1pm and will be followed by a Skate Jam organised by Popcorn of Northallerton.
It was announced yesterday that the Cleveland Show, in Middlesbrough, will not go ahead, despite it not due to take place until July 28. The park has been left sodden after recent downpours and the show’s management committee took the decision to cancel after fearing it could cause lasting damage to the recently refurbished historic park. Deputy show director Barrie Robinson said: “We have considered alternative venues, but they are similarly sodden.
“The long-term weather forecast offers little hope of much sunshine, and adding this to the logistics of relocating the show so close to the event we are left with no other viable alternative.”
Meanwhile, Durham County Council yesterday announced that a multi-agency task force, with support from the community and voluntary sector, would be keeping a close eye on water levels, rainfall and highways conditions over the weekend.
The council said it had received a steady stream of requests for sandbags and is responding to those on a priority basis, with those areas most at risk of flooding getting the fastest response.
The Environment Agency has also put out flood warnings and alerts.
Flood incident manager Craig Woolhouse said: “Rivers that respond quickly to rainfall are especially prone to flooding over the weekend.
“The heavy rainfall will also lead to flooding from surface water – caused when rain overwhelms drainage systems.
‘We would urge the public to remain vigilant, keep in touch with the latest information and be prepared for what could be severe flooding, especially as river levels can rise very quickly and the ground in many places is already saturated.”