Members of Colne Cricket Club have been left overwhelmed by the “unprecedented” support they have received since launching a campaign in our paper.
Lancashire League’s oldest club is currently under threat, having suffered from a number of break ins, spiralling costs and falling numbers of spectators.
A desperate plea was issued to raise £100,000 over the next 12 months, and residents were urged to “pledge a pound to save our ground”.
Since the appeal, many local cricket clubs and members of the community have got on board and are rallying around to try and prevent the facility from closing its doors. Already, £1,000 has been pledged.
Lowerhouse Cricket Club will be walking from the station to the ground to raise public awareness of the club’s plight when they visit Colne’s Horsfield ground on Sunday, May 11th. Ramsbottom Cricket Club have said they will do the same.
Accrington will be raising money on Sunday, April 19th during their Ron Singleton Colne Trophy game against Burnley, and Barrowford Cricket Club have offered to play a fund-raising match.
The Lancashire Cricket Board will also meet with club officials in the coming weeks to see how they can help.
Club Chairman Jane Williamson said: “The response has just been phenomenal, and we just need to keep that going now.”
And Colne cricketer Joel Duerden, who helped to launch the “Save our Ground” campaign added: “The response has blown us away really, particularly on social media. We’ve had literally hundreds and hundreds of tweets.
“Everyone wants to do their bit to help us. We’ve been really humbled by it and it has really made us believe we can do it”.
A separate “Save Our Ground” committee is now being set up, after a number of young players expressed an interest in taking the fund-raising forward.
Bar opening hours will also be reviewed to make the Byron Road clubhouse more accessible to the public.
County Councillor Paul White, who will head up the new committee, said: “Everyone has really stepped up, and we have tonnes of ideas in the pipeline.
“As a town, we can pull together and do this and it is great that the lads are so determined too. Their enthusiasm has been great. We’re now going to sit down together and get these ideas rolling.
“The best thing to come out of this is definitely the awareness, and the team spirit not only of Colne as a town, and this club, but across the whole of Lancashire.”
The club is hosting a clean-up day on Sunday from 10am for anyone wanting to get involved and help tidy the ground.
For more information or to make a donation visit www.saveourground.com. Alternatively, contact Jane Williamson on 07803 726845.