It's half a century not out for ambitious cricket club
A local cricket club has turned its attentions to the future after marking its 50th anniversary. Mossley Cricket Club has spent the past year celebrating notching up its half century but its at a recent annual meeting, ambitious plans to make the little village club into a centre of excellence were unveiled.
Club chairman, Steve Austin, said the club did not want to go into obscurity and it is delighted to see so many people committed to the cause. Mr Austin explained: " So many local teams have fallen by the wayside, once you start dropping from two senior teams to one the writing is on the wall. We do not want to fall in that criteria, that is why we want to tackle it early on and try to move the club forward."
The club is looking to enhance its reputation with new players joining, a refurbishment of the ground, a clubhouse and significant financial investments in junior cricket.
Mr Austin who has been chairman since 1988, added: "We are looking to get electricity at the club, which will enable us to improve the facilities and if we improve the facilities then it becomes a more attractive proposition for players to come and join the club. We have got a hardcore 10 to 12 members who are all set on carrying this club forward and with new members coming in and injecting new blood it's given us longstanding members a much needed kick up the backside."
Former chairman and successful local businessman, Neil Kippen, was so impressed with the 50th anniversary celebration and the abundance of energy and vision, that he was moved to become the club’s new, main sponsor with his clothing brand James and Nicholson.
Further funds have been secured from Congleton Town Trust and Congleton Inclosure Trust to enable the club to develop its junior section and playing facilities.
The bold plans focus on five key priorities which include: playing & performance, membership & community engagement, facilities, communication and income generation.
New roles have been created to provide leadership and co-ordination of the plan and already the newly elected officers have been busy.
The club is extremely keen to promote the development of the junior section which will be the focus of much attention following the successes of last season.
Carl Nancollas has spent hours creating a new website, which provides the club with a refreshed look, offering easy access to club information, player registration, team selection and club news. Mr Nancollas said: "After celebrating 50 years, we are now looking at how to maintain the club for another 50 years. The focus is on progressing the junior side and bringing new players through. Our older and senior heads cannot stick around forever."
Team managers Patrick Moss, Andy Frost, Phil Stirk and Peter Goodwin will lead the way in developing the Mossley stars of the future.
Newly appointed Director of Coaching, Laura Griffiths will run the ECB All Stars Cricket programme for 5-8 year olds whilst looking to build the numbers of 9-16 year olds in the club.
With new funds secure from the Congleton Town Trust, there are significant investments being made into increasing levels of participation at junior level and developing young talent.
With ideas to improve the facilities at the Moss Road ground, Richard Mort takes on the responsibility of finding the funds needed to make a substantial investment in improving the ground, practice areas and the pavilion.
The grant allocation from the Congleton Inclosure Trust means that improvements are already underway.
Club secretary Patrick Moss leaves his current role to focus on developing the under 11s team who ended last season as league champions. Adrian French will take over from Mr Moss.