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Lauren Winfield-Hill and Sue Redfern discuss Gender Equality in 'The Changing Room' series

Lauren Winfield-Hill and Sue Redfern discuss Gender Equality in 'The Changing Room' series
Lauren Winfield-Hill and Sue Redfern discuss Gender Equality in 'The Changing Room' series
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Royal London, the UK’s largest mutual life and pensions provider, has today released the second episode of The Changing Room, a three-part video series, in partnership with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).

The Changing Room is about having conversations that matter and facing into a range of topics that impact the game of cricket. Royal London has invited people from all walks of cricket to the iconic Lord’s Cricket Ground to speak about their personal experiences of the game and the challenges they have faced in it. Each episode addresses a different issue, with current and former England players discussing important topics like racial discrimination and women’s equality.

In this second episode, England internationals Lauren Winfield-Hill, Alice Davidson-Richards, and Charlie Dean join Sue Redfern, the first woman to umpire first-class cricket in England, to talk about their journeys as women in the sport and what they feel needs to be done to further the women’s game.

The four discuss what it’s like growing up playing as girl, the challenges they’ve faced with facilities and kit when frequently playing with boys, as well as the sexist comments they’ve had to deal with on the sidelines. They also get into the impact of The Hundred, the importance of having male allies supporting the women’s game, and touch on how small changes, like the provision of tampons in changing rooms and not having to wear ‘whites’, can have a big influence on helping women to feel cricket is a game for them.

Sue Redfern remarks: “It was quite shocking for me [when I started] how few females there were umpiring. I can now say to players moving forward that, in the next stages of [their] careers, umpiring is a feasible opportunity.”

Lauren Winfield-Hill comments: “The 2017 [World Cup] was a watershed moment – loads of girls started playing cricket off the back of that and The Hundred was similar - it was a real family event. Where before you’d have a young girl coming to watch with Stokes on the back of their shirt, now you see young girls coming to watch with Levick on their back.”

Susie Logan, group chief marketing officer at Royal London said: “The Changing Room is giving people a voice and a platform to share their stories from across the breadth of cricket. We’re proud to work in partnership with the ECB to highlight these issues and the positive change taking place to make cricket a more inclusive sport.”

The ECB will have invested £23M in the women’s game by the end of 2023 and plans to invest a further £50M by the end of 2025, with an aim of raising the profile of the game and helping to develop an inclusive environment for women and girls that will encourage a lifelong love of the sport.

This focus is already seeing results, with over 1,000 clubs now offering women and girls the chance to play in games, and a minimum of 500 projects over the next five years to support improvements at women’s and girl’s facilities. There are now 68 female professionals in the country, the highest number ever, and women’s salaries are being doubled for this year’s edition of The Hundred.

Chief Diversity and Communications Officer at the ECB, Kate Miller, said: “Royal London’s series is helping us to keep our focus on the issues that we know are impacting our sport. We’ve made significant progress in recent years in combatting discriminatory attitudes, raising the profile of the women’s game and providing more opportunities for young girls to get into cricket, but we know there is still more to do.

“It is good to see Lauren, Alice, Charlie and Sue openly discussing the barriers they have faced, so that we can keep promoting inclusive behaviours and cultures, which will benefit both this, and the next generation of women’s players and officials.”

Episode 2 is available to stream at: www.royallondon.com/cricket