On a cold Saturday 24th March the Leicestershire County Cricket Club (LCCC) Community Team and Club player Harry Swindells went to support Newtown Linford Cricket Club (NLCC) with their NatWest Cricket Force (NWCF) Weekend.
Everyone arrived at NLCC pavilion for 9:30am to be greeted by the Chairmen Jon Dale. He welcomed everyone to Newtown Linford and also thanked everyone for giving up there time, to help get the club prepared for the first game of the season. This plays a vital part of bring the club and community together before the season starts, plus they also get see their hard work throughout the season. Jon then handed over to Tim Moult who had been organising the day with other committee members to explain what jobs needed doing which were; emptying out the club house, rubber ducks, painting the benches, putting the sight screen up, cleaning / sanding tables and chairs, outdoor nets- cleaning and putting the nets out as well as raking the leaves and mud out of the ditch plus many more. Unfortunately due to weather and the rising river we could not get on with one of the main jobs which was to have a fluid barrier to stop the water rising over the newly turfed outdoor nets, this will be done later on in the season.
The first job to get done was to get everything out of the pavilion otherwise we wouldn’t know what state the equipment and benches where in. Once all items were out a few people put the sight screens together, while others sanded down the benches ready for them to be painted. There was also a very fun job in emptying out the rubber ducks from Boxing Day duck race and putting them in number order, so the club knew how many ducks were missing ready for the next race. They even had a little helper to help with this who just loved getting dirty and eating the ducks.
As everything was out of the club house and changing rooms this meant they could now being painting the changing room as the kitchen was in use for drinks and snacks.
Stephenson College arrived at the ground to drop off the fencing which they made for Newtown Linford as part of the construction college partnership with the LCCC. This gives the college students vital hands on experience plus they get to see their work being put into good use. They have previous made benches, a storage shed and a score hut for the club. Volunteers from club then installed the fences around the ground as the college could only drop them off due to other commitments that day.
Around 11am we had a mid-morning break with tea, coffee, bacon and sausage cobs available from the club house for all the volunteers that helped out, which was great as we all had little chats about cricket, community and club development. This was also a great opportunity to have a group picture of all the volunteers, community staff and Harry, we then carry on with the work in hand.
We will not be allowing Harry anywhere near a paint brush or a bench again as you can see from his efforts in the picture on the left.
A total of 2,410 club have taken part in NatWest Cricket Force this year, a new record by over 200 clubs! This amazing effort also saw more than 50,000 volunteers take part. In Leicestershire and Rutland we saw 60 clubs take part in the event, 10 more club than last year.
We would like to thank Newtown Linford CC for allowing the LCCC Community Team be part of their NatWest Cricket Force weekend. Would your club like to be a showcase club for NWCF 2019??? If YES then please contact Heather Beattie for more information.