Boost for Thetford with cricket grant

The cricket pitch at Thetford is set to improve following an award of �9,980 to Thetford Town Cricket Club as part of Sport England’s small grants programme.

The money will be used to purchase grounds-keeping equipment and to train an additional volunteer to help out working on the ground.

The project was developed following unsatisfactory marks awarded by visiting captains for the pitch in 2009.

The club has already invested in the pitch by training a new groundsman, purchasing a couple of essential smaller items and hiring contractors to do the autumn renovations in readiness for the new equipment for the 2011 season.

“This award from Sport England is really important to enable us to do more to improve the quality of the pitch we play on” said Mark Allison, the new groundsman.

“We have managed for a long time with a mower and other items that are on long-term loan to us from John Mayes, whose engineering company has been an important backer in the past. However, to really develop the club, sustain our current membership and grow the club as part of an expanding town, we really need this investment to help improve our playing facilities.”

As part of this project the club are looking for new volunteers to assist, particularly as grounds assistant for which training can be provided through the Sport England grant.

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Vic Peters, club chairman, added: “This could be the start of a whole new era for us with funding applications pending for a new clubhouse, more activity by the club in things like the Thetford festival and a desire to engage with the wider community.

“We welcome new players at whatever level as we look to develop a bigger squad for the senior and youth teams. We welcome anyone wanting to get involved as a volunteer and will offer support to help them train as a coach or umpire or whatever they want to do.”

Currently the club has two adult teams playing in the Alliance, the first team in Division Three and the A side in Division Six. The club also has a team in the Mid-Norfolk Sunday League. There are also some promising club players coming through the U11, U13 and U15 sides, with four having achieved full county honours.

While results this season were mixed the club is looking forwards and welcomes interest by local companies who might be interested in playing friendly matches during the 2011 season to broaden the participation in cricket within Thetford.

Chris Perks, Sport England’s Regional Lead for Norfolk said: “If community sports clubs want to attract and retain participants, they need to be able to offer quality facilities for everyone. The improvements to Thetford Town Cricket Club’s pitch through the purchase of this equipment will be welcomed by regular users and those who are new to cricket.”

Further information about the project or interest from potential volunteers should be directed to or 07787 621852.