Thursday, 24 June 2021

Club wins £50,000 from Lottery

WARGRAVE Cricket Club has been awarded a £50,000 grant for new practice nets.

WARGRAVE Cricket Club has been awarded a £50,000 grant for new practice nets.

The money, which comes from the the National Lottery and Sport England, will be put towards three new full-length nets at the club’s ground off Recreation Road.

Club officials hope the new facilities will help to grow girls’ cricket at the club, improve the junior section and introduce a new under-sixes team.

Wargrave is one of 148 sports clubs in the region to benefit from a share of £9 million of funding from Sport England’s Inspired Facilities fund.

Club chairman Phil Drew said: “We are thrilled to receive this support to further our ambition of providing the best opportunities and safest facilities to promote cricket to all levels and age groups. It is especially pleasing as we can now provide enhanced coaching and practice facilities to more local boys and girls.”

Secretary Ken Clark added: “The most important part of this project is the colts junior section. We have 60 or 70 boys at the club at the moment and we want to get them introduced to the sport early.

“With the added facilities we can really plough ahead and grow the girls’ section as well as the under-sixes. The increased space will allow us to put on more sessions. The club is growing and these facilities will give us a lot more draw to encourage youngsters to go out and play cricket in a safe  environment.”

Charles Johnston, Sport England’s property director, said: “The Inspired Facilities fund has had a huge impact on grassroots sport across the country.

“Since 2011, we’ve invested  £102 million into more than 1,920 projects to improve and refurbish sports clubs and transform non-sporting venues into vibrant community sports clubs.

“It’s great to see Wargrave Cricket Club join the long list of successful clubs to benefit from this fund.”

Wargrave Cricket Club, which plays in the Thames Valley League, currently has four men’s teams as well as a junior section from under-sevens to under-17s. It is hoping to start a female section and a taster session was held last month aimed at seven- to 15-year-old girls.

Five years ago, the club built a new £300,000 sports pavilion in the recreation ground. The pavilion was paid for with grants and donations, including £63,000 from the England and Wales Cricket Board and money from Wargrave Parish Council’s reserves.

Berkshire also use the pitch to play some their home Minor Counties Championship games.

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