Sherriff Amenity recently underlined its commitment to educating and supporting volunteers in the turf industry after proudly sponsoring both NatWest’s CricketForce initiative and The Surrey Grounds Support Network (SGSN) Conference.
NatWest’s CricketForce is the largest annual volunteering initiative in UK Sport which aims to rejuvenate the nation’s cricket facilities. It encourages cricket supporters, their friends and families, and local businesses to give something back to their local community cricket club by volunteering to participate in major renovation projects to clubhouses and grounds.
Streatham & Marlborough Cricket Club, based in Dulwich London, was the latest showcase club to be chosen by the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) for 2017’s NatWest Cricket Force, and over one hundred volunteers turned up to show their support.
Families from all ages were joined by the former legendary English cricketer Mike Gatting, England and Middlesex fast bowler Steven Finn and England and Surrey all-rounder Zafar Ansari, as they all pulled together to work on a number of projects such as a total re-fit of the kitchen, adding lighting to path and garages, painting all external fencing, the installation of new toilets and a general spruce up of the car-park, pavilion and bar areas.
As proud sponsors, a number of Sherriff Amenity representatives also took time out of their busy schedules to help the cause and worked alongside staff from Lister Wilder and Dennis & SISIS to help prepare the pitch for the season ahead – in which it was rolled, scarified and fed with fertiliser.
Commenting on the event, Chris Turpie - amenity specialist for Sherriff Amenity said: “The goal for the cricket club was to create a more welcoming environment for members and guests, and I believe it successfully achieved this. Obviously we were delighted to sponsor the event, donate some bags of seed and fertiliser and help prepare the pitch for the season ahead. I’ve also said that we are more than happy to go in and volunteer more of our time - to continue helping them along the way where we can.
“It was a great day for people of all ages; everyone played their part and there were even ECB coaches in attendance to run activities with the kids. It is, quite simply, a brilliant initiative which is going a long way in taking care of the future of cricket in our country.”
As long-term supporters of the Surrey Grounds Support Network, Sherriff Amenity was also delighted to play a key role in the recent annual conference which was held at The Kia Oval.
The conference, which supports recreational cricket from grassroots up, saw over 95 delegates in attendance all hoping to gain advice on cricket groundsmanship, and Sherriff were on hand to offer their expertise.
“Predominantly the conference consists of well-meaning volunteers,” said Sherriff Amenity’s James Watson. “We are there to offer advice on their own projects and try and guide them with their nutrient and chemical decisions and their seed choices, so that they are getting the best value for the money that they have got available to them – which in most cases is extremely limited.
“These are the guys that need the most help because they haven’t gone through an official training channel to become qualified groundsmen as such. These are the people that live in the village and suddenly they find themselves in charge with next to no knowledge or budget.”