Howzat! School in Ipswich opens new cricket and sports pavilion
PUBLISHED: 18:45 17 June 2019 | UPDATED: 18:45 17 June 2019
A school in Ipswich is hoping to bowl over visitors with its new cricket and sports pavilion.
The new building at St Joseph's College, built by Mixbrow Construction, is part of a wider investment plan of improvements in the Belstead Road school and is designed to help boost students' physical activities.
The dual-aspect pavilion, with its glossy interior, kitchen, bar and stylish furnishings will also be used as a base for numerous sporting and social events besides cricket, as well as for seminars and workshops.
However the school says its role in furthering the profile of cricket at St Joseph's College will be "pivotal".
Cricket has replaced rounders for girls at the school and is also one of its four performance sports, alongside football, rugby and netball.
The facility was opened by Essex cricket captain Ryan ten Doeschate - named as one of the 10 cricketers to watch internationally - on Friday, June 14.
"If I'd been to a school like this, this I would have been a better cricketer!" he told students at the opening, before giving them a cricketing masterclass in the new nets beside the pavilion.
St Joseph's College principal Danielle Clarke said: "Sport is a massive part of St Joseph's and the pavilion will improve the experience for home teams and visitors alike.
"The college has made impressive progress to-date in achieving its aim to be recognised for facilities which support high academic achievement.
"I can foresee so many ways the pavilion will enhance the provision available at the school for our girls and boys and look forward to seeing it utilised to its full potential by our students and the wider St Joseph's community."
Phil Branton, director at Wincer Kievenaar - the architects which designed the building - said: "We have had a long-standing relationship with St Joseph's College where we have provided support to ensure its vision and drive become a reality.
"Along the way, we have been involved in the construction of the new prep school and the floodlit astroturf sports pitches, as well as the new technology and sixth form centres."
St Joseph's College is a co-educational day and boarding school for children aged between three and 18 which was founded in 1937.
The school occupies a beautiful 60-acre site close to the centre of Ipswich and has in recent years seen substantial investment in new buildings and facilities.
It was recently rated as "excellent" overall in its recent Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) report.