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Sticky wicket for cricket club that has no real home

By The Citizen  |  Posted: May 02, 2014

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COOPER’S Edge Cricket Club is gearing up for its third season but is still struggling to find a permanent home.

The club was started in 2011 by residents and has since grown to around 20 members.

However, since there are no cricket pitches on the estate, the team has had to move three times in three years.

Alan Shackell, founder of the Cooper’s Edge Cricket Club, says this may stop the club from growing.

He said: “As more people move into the Cooper’s Edge estate I can see up to 30 people becoming interested in joining in the next few years but it will be difficult to accommodate them without a permanent home.

“We’ve been able to get people involved who were not previously interested in cricket and give them a place to socialise, which is important for people moving to a new estate who may not know anyone.”

In their first season the club played at King George V playing field before being moved on to Witcombe Cricket Club a year later and they now play in Upton St Leonards.

Cooper’s Edge Cricket Club is hoping to find a permanent home in Ermin Street, where developer Bellway Homes is to build up to 200 new homes and sports pitches next to the Invista plant.

Club member Aaron Walters, who joined in April last year, said: “When I first moved here for work I kept to myself, but the club took me out of my own little world.

“To get our own home would be fantastic for the club, because then we could grow, get more people involved and do more charity work.”

The club, which currently plays on Wednesday evenings in the fifth division ofGloucester Evening Cricket League, eventually wants to accommodate a senior and a junior team and be able to play on Saturdays.

Results for the club have been mixed so far. They were almost promoted to the fourth division in their first season but finished only fourth out of five teams in 2013.

Barbara Martin, chair of Hucclecote Parish Council, said: “We’re delighted that a cricket team has been able to continue in Cooper’s Edge and the more sports teams that can be arranged can only be for the benefit of the community.

“For them to find a permanent home in the Ermin Street development would be ideal.”

Tim Lund, sales manager at Bellway, said: “Part of the development at Ermin Street will include a cricket pitch, a football pitch and a pavilion.

“Local cricket teams have been invited to apply to take their home at the pitch, and we’re looking forward to welcoming a new team when the pitch is opened.”

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