Cash boost means all change in cricket

A cricket club is to see facilities upgraded – thanks to a £6,000 grant from Banks Community Fund.

Hawick and Wilton, established in 1849, was successful in its application for funding, which will go towards modernising male and female changing and shower facilities, with a specific focus on encouraging more girls and women to participate in local sport.

The upgrades will coincide with an overarching redevelopment, which has seen around £30,000 spent on new purpose-built all-weather wickets.

Officials at the club are delighted with the grant, which will help the club to modernise, while continuing to offer high level coaching for various sports.

Craig Macdougall, the club’s project development manager, said: “The club is a real community hub and also provides sporting facilities and opportunity for all schools in the Hawick catchment area.

“It is therefore vital that we are able to upgrade the facilities so that they are in line with the high standards expected of the club – and still be able to direct funding towards training and coaching for our team of volunteers.

“We would also like to encourage more females to play cricket and use the club, and the attraction of modern, well-equipped facilities will hopefully help us to achieve this.”

Banks Community Fund is a charitable fund set up by Banks Group, the Hamilton-based property and renewable energy business, and has been used for everything from church hall repairs to community garden schemes, while charities, youth groups and voluntary organisations have also benefited.

Banks Renewables is awaiting a decision on its planning application to construct a 60MW, 15-turbine wind farm at its Birneyknowe site, near Bonchester Bridge.

“We have real difficulty keeping gifted young cricketers in the area as they go elsewhere in the search of jobs, so any increase in opportunities would be very welcome,” added Macdougall.