Copley Cricket Club, Halifax HX3 0UG - Telephone: 01422 367360 - copleycc@hotmail.co.uk

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In 2012 Copley Cricket Club gained national headlines

In 2012 Copley Cricket Club achieved national recognition for its new £585,000 pavilion development and for being awarded National Showcase status by the ECB under the NatWest CricketForce initiative, the largest community volunteering programme in UK sport.

The project to build a new pavilion and to widen the club’s community focus had taken 7 years – since being made a Focus Club by the YCB in 2005 and achieving the Club Mark accreditation in the following year. The club’s commitment to develop its Junior Section and also to re-invest the proceeds of the sale of a small strip of land to a neighbouring housing development were both major factors in the launch of the project. After many years of fundraising and applying for grants, the project started to attract local support and funding from outside of the area. The key to the project’s success has ultimately been the financial support that has been received from the ECB, but the club also received other grants from SITA Trust, Awards for All and Calderdale Council. The club engaged the local community and attracted many additional local sponsors and as a consequence 2012 has been an extremely busy and rewarding year for Copley Cricket Club. 2012 has also seen the formation of South Halifax Girls, which is the first girl’s cricket team in Calderdale, and attracts players who are able to remain members of other Halifax League Clubs.

The publicity has also promoted the Halifax Cricket League at a national level with a range of articles and photographs appearing in national newspapers, websites and cricket magazines such as the Cricketer. The programme for the England / South Africa test match at Headingley also featured a double page feature on the new pavilion project and Copley’s NatWest CricketForce achievements. In August 2012, Copley Cricket Club was awarded an OSCA by the YCB at its annual awards ceremony at Headingley for its contribution to NatWest CricketForce.

The timeline for Copley’s NatWest CricketForce Showcase year has been as follows:

 August 2011 – NWCF National Showcase Family Fun Day – supported by Michael Vaughan, Tim Bresnan, Jenny Gunn and Katherine Brunt;

 September 2011 – appointment of building contractor and launch of additional fundraising and sponsorship initiatives;

 October 2011 – demolition of old pavilion and preparation of site for building;

 November 2011 – commencement of building work;

 December 2011 – erection of steel frame;

 January 2012 – Public Meeting to promote NWCF and to engage the community in the project;

 January 2012 – launch of South Halifax Girls and creation of partnership with Calderdale College;

 February 2012 – Continued fundraising and “door knocking” to support NWCF;

 February 2012 – erection of roof;

 March 2012 – 24 hour continuous “Bike – a – thon” fundraising event;

 April 2012 – NWCF Showcase Day – supported by Mike Gatting, Neil Fairbrother and 250 members and community supporters;

 May 2012 – Volunteers continue to support the “finishing aspects” of the project – a race against time and a challenging start to the new season. Opening of changing rooms and the new bar;

 May 2012 – first fixture for South Halifax Girls;

 May 2012 – the staging of the first “major game” – Yorkshire X1 (captained by Richard Pyrah) narrowly beat a Halifax Cricket League Presidents X1;

 June 2012 – The floods! Copley Cricket Club becomes a lake, being submerged under two feet of floodwater for several weeks – with floodwater causing considerable damage to the new pavilion;

 July 2012 – No cricket played in the aftermath of the floods and the “finishing projects” have to be replaced by a “mopping up” exercise and repair work;

 August 2012 – although playing conditions remain “under repair,” cricket starts again after being flooded for 6 weeks;

 August 2012 – Copley Cricket Club awarded an OSCA by the Yorkshire Cricket Board at their annual awards ceremony under the NWCF category and invited to attend the ECB’s national awards day at Lords;

 September 2012 – The Official Opening of the New Pavilion and the staging of West Yorkshire Girls Cricket Finals, featuring South Halifax Girls;

 October 2012 – the new pavilion begins to be used for a wider variety of community activities.

As one can see, the last year has been a “roller coaster” ride for Copley Cricket Club and its members and community supporters, who have all worked continuously to achieve their new facilities. By its own admission, the Club now looks forward to a period of consolidation, to ensure that “normal service” can be resumed, and to re-focus on cricket development. Steve Archer the West Yorkshire Development Manager for the YCB deserves a special mention and Copley Cricket Club also wishes to thank the ECB and all their funding partners and supporters. The Club also wish to record their particular thanks to Dave Normanton and the Executive of the Halifax Cricket League who have been active supporters throughout the entire project and every aspect of what has been a very busy year.