Grant enables revival of Seaton Burn junior cricket
Young cricketers are once again taking wickets and scoring runs at a North Tyneside cricket club after support from a regional employer enabled its junior section to be revived.
Junior cricket at Seaton Burn Cricket Club petered out around a decade ago due to a lack of playing facilities and available coaches, but with several of the present 1st XI having come through the ranks at the club themselves, the desire to give kids across the community the chance to learn and play at their local club had come back to the fore.
To allow this to happen, the club needed to find new equipment which could be used to bring the pitches at either end of the club's main wicket, on which junior matches had formerly been played, back into use.
And now, thanks to a £3,200 grant from the Banks Group's Banks Community Fund, a new hand roller and mower which will do the required jobs have been purchased, as well as a secure container in which they can be safely stored.
A number of senior players have completed coaching badges in advance of the junior section being relaunched, and regular practice sessions which are already attracting around 30 children have now commenced at the Front Street ground.
The club has teamed up with a local school to encourage its pupils to come along to coaching sessions, and it is also working with other local clubs with large junior sections to take on some of their players who might not otherwise be getting all the coaching time they would like.
It is hoping to be able to start playing friendly matches later in the season, with a view to building towards having a full junior section with teams at every level from U11s to U19s within a few years which will then go on to supply players to the senior sides.
As of this season, the club has an under 11 team in the Northumberland Junior Cricket League Central and Coast Division.
Membership secretary Paul Redmayne says: "Many members of our senior sides learnt the game by playing for our former junior teams, and reopening this player pipeline has been something the club has been keen to do for some time.”