Our Chair and the Chair of Mitcham Cricket Club have jointly published an open letter to the owner of the Burn Bullock pub. This comes in response to an article in the Wimbledon Guardian.
Our letter was published in the Guardian on 27 November 2014, and it can be found at the Guardian website as a letter to the editor: Words do not match actions over historic Burn Bullock pub. The full text of the letter follows.
We were interested to read of Kamran Baig’s plans for the Burn Bullock and Mitcham cricket pavilion (Hotel plan for former pub, November 6).
You were right to say that the pub is ‘dilapidated’. This is the direct result of Mr Baig’s inaction – some might say wilful neglect – over many years. It is truly shocking that the owner of this Grade II listed building has allowed it to fall into such a state of disrepair that it was put on the 2014 Heritage at Risk register by English Heritage last month.
Mr Baig has consistently ignored not only local people but also notices served on him by Merton Council, and has run illegal car wash and car sales businesses from the pub’s car park – activity which was stopped by yet further action by Merton Council.
We have made numerous approaches to Mr Baig to discuss both the Burn Bullock and the Cricket Pavilion. He says he wishes to engage and then never follows up.
If he did, he would learn that there are compelling reasons why building a new cricket pavilion on the green is a non starter and hear about our exciting ideas for making even better use of the pavilion which he might like to support.
The pavilion is the first building to be registered by Merton Council as an asset of community value and it should be treasured.
We are working hard with Merton Council to achieve this with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund.
As owner of the Cricket Pavilion Mr Baig has never provided the cricket club with a proper lease.
Does he prefer to keep the home of the oldest cricket ground in the world in constant uncertainty about its future?
Mr Baig, we would love to talk. Give us a call. You say you want to and you know where we are.
John Strover, Chair, Mitcham Cricket Green Community & Heritage
Peter White-Young, Chair, Mitcham Cricket Club