Cricket club nets £1,000 grant

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A St Helens cricket club which starts its new season next month has again been selected as a Persimmon Homes North West Community Champion – netting them £1,000.

Earlestown Cricket Club, in the western part of Newton-le-Willows, first secured funds in December 2015, with the cash going towards club house repairs.

This time round, the £1,000 will pay for a new training cage at the club.

Persimmon Homes’ Community Champions initiative is a national programme where charities and groups can secure funding up to the value of £1,000 to match money they have already raised themselves.

Nationwide the company will donate a total of £750,000.

Karl Allan, club chairman at ECC, said: “Our club was founded in 1882 and we have struggled over the last 18 months. We dropped from three teams to just a Saturday team, although last year we did launch a midweek team which has been a fantastic success and has bolstered numbers.

“One thing we desperately need is better training facilities to help us improve our players, enabling us to move up through the leagues and therefore hopefully retain players.

“To be named a Persimmon Homes Community Champion for a second time is fantastic news and we are really grateful. I’m sure the improved facilities will heIp us to grow as a club.”

Dave Hodgson, sales director for Persimmon Homes North West, said: “Earlestown Cricket Club is at the heart of community and we wanted to do all we could to help the club secure its future.

“They are exactly the kind of group that the Community Champions scheme was put together to help, and we look forward to our customers being part of the cricket club for many years to come.

“As always it wasn’t easy to select our winner, such was the high standard of applications, and we would encourage any charity or organisation that missed out this time to apply again – even if they have won previously.”

To find out more about the Community Champions, or to nominate a charity, visit