Homes alongside Cobridge Park to get extra protection from errant cricket balls
A THREE-METRE high fence will be installed at a city park to stop cricket balls smashing into residents' cars and homes.
People living alongside Cobridge Park say balls hit out of the recreation ground have caused damage to their property countless times.
Now Stoke-on-Trent City Council has agreed to increase the height of the fence in an effort to solve the problem.
But some residents feel turning the cricket pitch around would have been a better solution.
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The extra mesh fencing will be added to a 72-metre long section of existing metal railings.
It will be situated along the recreation ground's northern edge, which is next to Ashburton Street.
Phil McNicol, aged 59, had his conservatory window smashed by a rogue cricket ball.
He said: "There was such a crash and the ball came flying through the window.
"There was glass everywhere.
"Balls have hit the window before, and we've regularly seen people coming over to get balls out of our yard. It has been a nuisance.
"It's about time they did something about it.
"We did ask them to turn the strip around because there's a high fence down the other side.
"That would have been better because the fence will spoil our view.
"You would have thought it would be easier too."
Neighbour Ash Iqbal said he had problems with his car being hit.
The 35-year-old said: "If they were using tennis balls that would be okay, but they use corky cricket balls.
"A lot of cars have been damaged.
"I had another car that ended up with loads of dents on the doors and I had to get rid of it, so I lost out on that.
"If you've got a nice car you want to be able to park it outside your own house without worrying about it being damaged.
"Some people have had windows smashed and they have had to pay for the damage themselves.
"It should be better when the fence is put up.
"Something needed to be done."
Residents received a letter on Friday telling them about the proposed fence.
Jason Canham, aged 26, said: "We've only lived here two or three months and we both work full time so we haven't had a problem so far, but I do know about it.
"It's good that the council is doing something by putting up the fence if it has been a problem, because you don't want anything like that to happen to your property.
"The only thing I did think was that is was a bit daft to do it now when people are not going to be playing there as much, instead of earlier in the year."
The council is also planning to repair the boundary fence that runs along Elder Road.