Paint brushes at the ready for Chesterfield’s pavilion

The Cricket Pavilion, Queens Park, Chesterfield
The Cricket Pavilion, Queens Park, Chesterfield

Chesterfield Cricket Club are urging the community to come down and help them beat Mother Nature as the excitement of the new season takes over.

This week will see the 13th annual NatWest CricketForce take place with Chesterfield one of a record-breaking 2,200 clubs registered to participate.

From Friday, April 4 to Sunday, April 6, thousands will come together to clean, tidy, repair and revitalise clubhouses and grounds in time for the new season.

Chesterfield will be among that number on April 6 as it calls on support to get its home ground back into shape for the start of the season.

And chairman Mike Taylor insists with help from NatWest CricketForce Chesterfield can enjoy a prosperous season both on and off the pitch.

He said: “The NatWest CricketForce is a great community event and brings people closer together.

“It’s always a really good atmosphere and people just enjoy helping out and being part of the club.

“Sometimes you might get someone who comes and watches the matches but doesn’t really talk to anyone but just nods to acknowledge them.

“And then they will come down and get stuck in and afterwards they feel a lot more comfortable just chatting to people at matches or getting involved.

“So for us because there isn’t a huge amount of back breaking work to do it is very much about bringing people closer to the club and working together.”

The scheme is supported by former England captain and current ECB Managing Director of Cricket Partnerships Mike Gatting.

And Gatting, who played 79 Tests and 92 ODIs for England, insists the recent bad weather makes the 2014 edition even more crucial to clubs like Chesterfield.

Gatting said: “It is wonderful news that a record-breaking number of clubs have already registered to hold a NatWest CricketForce event.

“In particular, the challenges presented by the nationwide floods at the start of this year, means that the 2014 effort is more important than ever before.

“Cricket clubs across the country represent the lifeblood of the sport, and it is hugely important that we all pull together and look after playing facilities.”