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History lessons help Ross revival

Ross-on-Wye CC

A semi-redundant pavilion dating back to 1887 will be the centre of attention at the weekend when Ross-on-Wye Cricket Club take part in NatWest CricketForce 2005.

The ground is steeped in cricket history, with the legendary WG Grace known to have played at Ross and he probably took tea outside the pavilion.

It is now in dire need of repair, however, and the club - which was formed in 1837 - plan to convert it into a scorebox and storage facility this weekend.

Other work planned includes painting all external woodwork including the posts, flagpole and sightscreen, general gardening and ground works to the patio area, and repairing and building benches for spectators.

Ross were recently identified by the England & Wales Cricket Board as deserving financial support because of the strength of their junior cricket development programme and the club received a £22,786 grant to build practice nets and an artificial wicket.

They will be further rewarded for their efforts on Saturday when England batsman and Worcestershire captain Vikram Solanki arrives by helicopter to lend his support to the CricketForce project.

Solanki will meet aspiring young cricketers, who will also be able to test their skills with the ECB Roadshow.

NatWest CricketForce 2005 logo high res

Club spokesman Nick Tregaskes told ecb.co.uk: “The event has grown hugely from a refurbishment project to something quite a lot bigger with a lot of hospitality and hosting guests from ECB and Vikram, which we’re obviously very excited about.

“The club has had excellent support from local businesses in a very short space of time. They’ve reacted very quickly because this hasn’t been long in planning, it’s only been about three or four months from start to where we are now.

“We’ve also managed to get in touch with a lot of past members as well so we’ve got a lot of local VIPs, which is quite exciting for the club because it’s gone through a period of perhaps not really realising its history as close as it can.

“We’ve done a lot of research into the history of the club which has been quite enlightening and it’s got the momentum of the club really moving.”