Edgbaston Cricket Ground, also known as the County Ground or Edgbaston Stadium, is a cricket ground in the Edgbaston area of Birmingham, England. It is home to Warwickshire County Cricket Club, and is also used for Test matches and One Day Internationals.
With permanent seating for 25,000 spectators, Edgbaston is the second-largest cricketing venue in the United Kingdom, after Lord's Cricket Ground in London.
Edgbaston is considered to be one of England's leading cricket grounds. Wisden's guide to cricket grounds in 1992 commented that "Lord's is really its only superior in the United Kingdom" with The Daily Telegraph agreeing in 2009 that "taken all in all, it is now the best ground outside Lord's." After the opening of the new South and West Stands in 2011 the England and Wales Cricket Board commented that "the spacious facilities are cutting edge, marginally better than the Home of Cricket".
The atmosphere at Edgbaston is reputed to be the most hostile in England for visiting teams. Former England captain Alec Stewart recalled "On a world level I would put it up there with Eden Gardens in Calcutta, which holds about 100,000. It inspires a team. It's like having another man in your side." and the former England wicketkeeper Geraint Jones describes how "The crowd here makes such a big noise when you are doing well ... it's a unique environment."
The record attendance at a County Championship match at Edgbaston is 28,000 against Lancashire in the championship-winning season of 1951, and the record for a single day of a test match is 32,000 against the West Indies in 1957.
For some years until 2000, Edgbaston had a distinctive motorized rain cover system, known as the Brumbrella.
Stands and spectator facilities
- South Stand
- West Stand. Built in 2011 on the site of the previous William Ansell Stand, the West Stand has two large tiers of seating. Adjacent to the south is the Edgbaston Suite – a 750 seat banqueting and exhibition space whose bright blue presence is a distinctive feature of both the inside and the outside of the ground – above which facing the pitch is a large electronic scoreboard.
- Priory Stand
- Raglan Stand
- R. E. S. Wyatt Stand. Built at the City End in 1995 and named after the Warwickshire and England all-rounder Bob Wyatt, who died that year, the R. E. S. Wyatt Stand consists of a single tier of seating beneath two rows of executive boxes. Facilities in the stand include two pitch-view restaurants: the Marston's Suite and the Executive Club, together with the David Heath Suite, currently used by Warwickshire members.
- Press Box Stand. Built in 1957 and first used for that year's test match against the West Indies, this stand was given to the club by Langton Iliffe, 2nd Baron Iliffe and his fellow directors of the Coventry Evening Telegraph. It hosted the ground's press facilities until the opening of the new South Stand in 2011. A two tier stand, it is allocated as an alcohol-free family area for major matches.
- Stanley Barnes Stand. A small single tier stand opened in 1989, the Stanley Barnes Stand is situated in front of the Thwaite Memorial Scoreboard, the ground's most distinctive feature.
- Eric Hollies Stand. Formerly known as the Rea Bank, after the River Rea which runs immediately to its rear, this is traditionally the most raucous area of the ground. The stand was renamed after the Warwickshire and England leg-spinner Eric Hollies in 1989, and was rebuilt in 2003 with 5,900 seats, an increase of 1,300 over its predecessor. The design, which won a Civic Trust Award in 2003, features a series of eight aluminium sunshades suspended over the single tier of seating on simple steel masts, appearing to hover over the crowd beneath.
|Test cricket grounds in England and Wales|
|Current Test grounds:|
| Edgbaston • Headingley • Lord's • Old Trafford • The Oval • Riverside • Sophia Gardens •|
Trent Bridge • Rose Bowl
|Former Test grounds:|