Skelmersdale Cricket club in fight for survival
OFFICIALS of another long-established sporting club in the town have launched a ‘use or lose us’ appeal in a desperate bid to boost dwindling adult membership.
Skelmersdale Cricket Club has a proud history stretching back more than 125 years but despite a thriving junior section, a lack of adult players is casting a cloud over its future with secretary, Steve Marston describing the situation as “critical.”
The club was founded in 1891 and was formerly based at School Lane until moving to its present location at Firswood Park in 2002.
In recent years though the number of adult players at the club has halved with a subsequent knock-on effect of fewer people using facilities such as the bar.
This led to an extraordinary general meeting being called at the club last Thursday (February 8) to discuss how to recruit more adult players.
Officials do not want to end up in the same predicament as the town’s football club who are now ground-sharing with Prescot Cables.
Steve Marston, said: “We are desperately short of adult players. In the last couple of years the number of adult playing members has halved and it has been a struggle getting teams together. The situation is critical and if it was to continue the club could be lost.
“We want to keep the club going as we have a fantastic asset here. We are proud to be here in Skelmersdale and our members don’t want to lose a fantastic sporting facility. The club is also a great social venue for all manner of celebrations and events, as well as being used as a polling station during elections and home to an archery club.
“But if we have less people playing, then less people use the facility and there is less money coming in and finances are hit.
“Our club is run by a small group of dedicated volunteers and we want to attract sponsors and partners to help secure its future.
“The ground itself was judged to be the third best in the league last year, reason enough for some players to want to play for us.”
The club play in the Liverpool and District Cricket Competition and a condition of membership is that they must be able to field two teams.
Steve added: “I think cricket is struggling nationally to attract players. Events like the Ashes series no longer being on terrestrial TV means a smaller audience for the sport.
“The Liverpool Competition is the only designated ECB league in Lancashire and we would be very interested in speaking to players who want to come to the club to challenge themselves at a higher level.
“The club has a thriving junior section catering for both boys and girls from around seven years of age to 15 with qualified ECB coaches. These juniors will be the future of the club but only if it gets past this current situation.
“We are calling on the people of Skelmersdale to support the club and be part of its future.”
Anyone who is interested in joining the club can call 07909 228 250.