Cricket club bowled over by new pavilion

Birstwith Cricket Pavilion was officially opened by the club's landlords David and Vicky Gaunt watched by club members, families and friends.(S)
Birstwith Cricket Pavilion was officially opened by the club's landlords David and Vicky Gaunt watched by club members, families and friends.(S)

A new cricket pavilion has been officially opened at a village club, after a five-year fundraising campaign and hands-on support from club members.

Birstwith Cricket Club has opened its new pavilion, giving players, spectators and visiting teams new facilities.

The new building includes a kitchen and eating area as well as showers and toilets.

It has replaced a wooden structure that had stood on the site and served the club for more than 100 years .

Players said it had long been their ambition to replace the wooden pavilion with a modern structure.

The club set about raising money for the project themselves with various fundraising activities.

They also received small grants from Knabbs Ridge Wind farm and North Yorkshire County Council which together with their own fundraising was enough to build a shell.

But once news of the project got around the Dale and the pavilion started to take shape support grew and the club began to receive donations from individual sponsors.

John Shuffe, Chairman of the Birstwith Cricket Club, said the biggest boost came from local businesses.

He said: “A number of local firms donated the building supplies, timber and stone which, together with hands-on support from club members, friends and families, helped us to complete the pavilion quicker than we had anticipated.

“We are extremely grateful for all the support and help we have been given.

“This is a great new facility for the cricket club members and visiting teams.”

The pavilion was officially opened on Sunday, August 19 by the club’s landlords, David and Vicky Gaunt.

There was a buffet and drinks reception for sponsors, and the opening event also included the club’s annual six-a-side cricket tournament.

The tournament was hit by a sudden downpour at 4pm, but ended with a bowl off which was won by Yeadon CC .