MARK CRICKET CLUB
For more information on the Mark Cricket Club or to see the latest results/fixtures,
visit their website: https://mark.play-cricket.com/home
Just over 12 months ago, the Cricket Club started the development of our new ground in Vole Road. Jump forward to today and the work achieved both on and off the field has exceeded our expectations with the ground looking fantastic (albeit that there's still a lot of work), and the Club winning promotion having finished the season as Champions.
During the last year, the Club has converted what was a standard agricultural field into a Cricket Ground which we hope the village can be proud of and will offer greater opportunities for more people to get involved with the Club - particularly the youth.
The original grass in the field was killed off, the "outfield" power-harrowed and reseeded with a sports quality grass seed, and left for nature to do its best. Although as expected, there's still a bit of weed coming through which we will deal with, the result is that we're delighted with an excellent playing surface.
The Cricket Square was professionally laid using a good quality Boughton Loam, and if it plays as good as it looks, we're in for plenty of runs next season. Adjacent to the Square, we've installed an Artificial Wicket which plays well having played a few "friendlies" on it at the end of the season.
A two-lane Cricket Net has been constrcted, again with an artifial surface, which has been put to good use with a number of "Net Sessions" already this year.
For the record, the first game on the ground was on Sunday 5th September 2021 against Woodborough CC, a touring side from Nottinghamshire, which resulted in a "Home Win" for the Club. Austen Petheram bowled the first ball, Mike Norris took the first wicket, and Mike King from the Village Stores hit the first MCC runs.
Our "Jewel in the Crown" has been the erection of our new Pavilion, a facility which we've sadly lacked for a number of years. Work is still on going to fully fit out the building, but when completed will boast two, good sized changing rooms with shower and WC facilities, plus a kitchen and social area incorporating a disabled toilet.
We had a tremendous year on the field with our Saturday Somerset League side, skippered by Austin Petheram, getting promoted, so we look forward to 2022 full of confidence, playing our first full season at our new ground in a higher divison. The Club is certainly on an upward trajectory.
We'd also like to use our success on the field and the opening of the new ground as a spring board to develop the Club further. Hopefully, with the support of new members from within the village, we'd like to create and enter a 2nd X1 into the Somerset County League. If you fancy getting involved with the Club, or have a son, daughter, brother, sister, or just a mate from along the road, then please get in touch. We'd be delighted to hear from anyone, of any age, and of any ability.
On a similar note, the Club will be looking to set up a Youth Section next season. The exact details will be ironed out in the New Year, but we hope to offer coaching and training sessions to a wide range of age groups. We've already been contacted by a number of parents, so please watch this space for futher details.
There are many people and organisations we would like to thank who have contributed through donations and Grant Funding to the development of our new ground, without their assistance none of this could have happened. These include the late John Isgar, Viridor, Sport England, The National Grid, The Nuttall Trust, Sedgemoor District Council and Mark Parish Council.
We would also like to thank A1 Gardening for their kind sponsorship of our Training Kit and Greenslade Taylor Hunt for our midweek match balls this year, plus the following match day sponsors - Somerlap Forest Products, Burnham Portable Toilets, Harpmoor Developments, JP Storage, Mark Village Stores, Parsons Farm Supplies, SW Digital and our President.
Finally, next year we'll be looking to arrange an ofifcial opening of the ground. The exact details have yet to be determined but we envisage a Sunday afternoon match in which the whole village can join us in formally celebrating a new home for Mark Cricket Club.
TIM MOXEY, Chairman Mark Cricket Club October 2021
Cricket Club ground, Vole Road
Mark Cricket Club was established as a part of village life in 1885, with the annual Mark Cricket Festival believed to have been the forerunner of the now renowned Mark Harvest Home.
The original home of the Club was the field opposite the White Horse Inn. During the 1920’s the Club moved to a field along Abbot’s Causeway and then onto Dutch Road before returning to the field opposite the White Horse Inn. The Club remained on this ground until the 1960’s before being forced to move to the playing field of Mark Primary School. Unfortunately, the small size of the playing field made playing competitive cricket very difficult. Being unable to find a suitable ground within the village a number of years were spent in Burnham-on-Sea, firstly at St Dunstan’s School and then King Alfred School.
For many years the Club has played on its present ground at Vole Road, thanks to our landlord, originally Mr John Matthews (deceased) and now his daughter Mrs Sally Stocking.
During this period the Club joined the Somerset Cricket League in 1983, with promotions gained in 1990 and 1993. A 2nd XI was formed in 2004 and joined the Somerset Cricket League in 2004, with promotions gained in 2006 and 2010.
The 2nd XI was formed as a consequence of a concerted effort to develop Youth Cricket within the Club. By establishing a Youth Welfare Officer and by joining the League’s 2ndXI Divisions this has provided competitive cricket for youngsters to enjoy and hopefully progress and develop into 1st XI players for the future.
Although extremely grateful to the Matthews’ family for their support of the Club, the provision of the field is only by verbal agreement, which doesn’t allow for the provision of facilities required of today’s standards. Temporary buildings are in place for the provision of changing and providing teas but toilet and showering facilities are off-ground.
In order to continue to attract players to the Club and provide facilities of the standard expected of today’s modern lifestyle the Club needs to establish a permanent home. This would allow for the provision of on-ground Toilets, Showering and Changing as well as other permanent facilities for the development of Youth Cricket with practice nets, all weather pitches etc.
To that end, using money bequeathed to the Club from the John Isgar estate the club acquired a field adjacent to the Mark 1st School in 2014. A Planning Application has now been submitted and the Club awaits the decision of the Parish Council and Sedgemoor District Council. (January 2018)
Since the above was written, the Club have sold this field and have bought a field in Vole Road, which is to be their permanent home. For more details, contact Tim Moxey, their Chairman, on the number below.
Contact: Tim Moxey (Chairman) 07467 149290