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No such thing as a free lunch... can we turn a dream into reality?

Posted in NatWest CricketForce 2008

Farsley Cricket Club, better known as the home of the Rams, full of enthusiastic cricket players, members and supporters on a cold, wet January evening – you’ve got to be joking?

Six weeks ago I certainly would never have believed it – this time last year we would have been lucky to have had a hardy band of locals sampling a few halves of mild and mumbling about how disappointing our performances were last summer!

NatWest CricketForce has changed that – true there are still a few cynics but the mood around the club has changed; it is positive and energetic, as people start to realise we have a golden opportunity to improve our present lot and leave the club and its facilities far more appealing for the future.

Twenty minutes presentation from the master orator Dave Leighton himself and the Red Lane faithful were not just sold on the idea and potential, they were inspired and re-invigorated.

Everyone at the club knew we were at a crossroads – traditionally we had always been one of the Bradford League’s leading sides, with a strong junior section and a development plan that had encouraged the progression of younger players – many of whom had gone on to play first class and even international cricket. But now the Club and facilities were at best tired – when Dave Leighton asked what jobs may need doing? One wag quipped it would be easier to ask what doesn’t?

True reality says we need a new roof (I don’t think it was ever anyone’s intention that the best place to shower was in the entrance to the club when it was raining!), the clubhouse and bar need redecorating, including new windows and doors and a heating system that works, the changing and shower rooms upgrading, the kitchen tiling, the exterior walls painting and the artificial pitch and nets repairing. The list goes on…

Pipe-dreams or reality, as Dave explained – it’s in our own hands. Over the last fortnight with faces that have not been seen for years re-appearing, we’ve had three further meetings to focus our efforts and appoint project managers and teams. We’ve got MP’s and councillors on board and had plans drawn up for a new roof. Letters have gone out to over 50 local companies and are already been followed up with calls. We’ve had some set backs but also importantly a few early successes.

We are not daft and we know there is no such thing as a free lunch – with the ECB’s and NatWest’s help, guidance and support, we have enthusiasm and commitment to rally the members and local community to give us every chance of success.

Finally, as I think I have rambled on enough I was told a few years ago you learn something new everyday – well what have I learned today… standard size bricks are not always the standard correct size! How do I know that – I’m no 'brickie' but our clubhouse was apparently built with bricks that are 1/3 smaller in size than they should be!

Shouldn’t be a problem you may think, but it has been somewhat confusing when our modern day architect was re-drawing the building using standard metric measures for bricks. Strangely he had never come across bricks of a similar size! I wonder when the building was originally built nearly 40 years ago, where did these bricks come from?

Intrigued by goings on at the 'Ramdome', check out our web site: www.farsleycricketclub.com

As out adventure begins, I will keep you posted - catch up again soon.

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