Newsletter, May 2017

From Dave Westwater, Chairman, Old Parkonians Association

Dave WestwaterWelcome to the Spring 2017 Newsletter, with an update on what's been happening at the Club over the last 6 months.

Since the last Newsletter we've made progress with planned work, including:

  • Extending the safety rail on the 1st Team pitch, which needed concreting of uprights and much welding to build the rail. Many thanks to Peter Hillan for providing the Club with the welding kit needed to do this and to Steve Kearney, Mervyn Pryce and Robbie Knight who installed the extension.
  • An additional safety rail has been installed to keep vehicles away from the decking in the car park - many thanks to Steve Kearney for organising the installation and the "hi-viz" paintwork!
  • Metal base plates, also provided by Peter, have been fitted to the large double benches on the decking.

We have also made significant changes to the Club's office systems, including moving to a largely paperless, online accounting system to manage the Club's increasingly complex financial operations. This gives much better visibility of the financial health of the Club and so allows us to plan more effectively.

Apart from the daily work to maintain the Clubhouse and sports pitches - a lot of effort goes in to looking after and preparing the cricket square and outfield - work planned for the next few months includes:

  • The installation of a concrete platform to separate the area in which cricketers and scorers sit from the card park. This will be clearly separated by bollards.
  • Replacement of the faulty phone line to the Clubhouse, which we hope BT will replace by the end of the month. The delay has been due to the need for BT to plan and install a new telegraph pole in the Club car park.

The Access Road

The biggest item on our agenda at the moment, both financially and logistically, is the renovation of the 200m road that runs from Holm Lane to the Clubhouse. As previously reported, we need around £60,000 to carry out a good quality, durable, resurfacing job.

Although we've received funding assistance in the past for projects directly related to sport, getting financial assistance for work on the road is proving a lot more challenging, as Steve Williams, our Fundraising Manager will testify. It looks at the moment as though it will be a matter of saving funds over a long period to reach our target.

In the meantime, we're trying to maintain what we have as best we can. If you're able to spend any time - even an hour a month - helping us with this or general ground maintenance, please let me know.

Bar Prices

As you will be aware, the last Budget saw increases in duty on alcohol, which coincided with the annual round of price increases from our suppliers.

However, due to work our Clubhouse Manager, Chris Hall, has done on re-negotiating price packages, we're pleased to say that we are not planning to increase Bar prices this year and will aim to hold prices at current levels.

Retirement Matters

In September it will be 60 years to the month that I have been involved in the Club as a player and general dogsbody!

The Club AGM will be retirement time for me from being Association Chairman and Company Secretary, no recognition under any circumstances will be accepted other than a pint over the bar!

Our very best wishes go to Ted Keaney our very long standing ground volunteer and Honorary Life Member who was 80 on April 18th, he threatens retirement, let’s wait and see.

My thanks once again to all Committee Members and Directors who do so much work on your behalf. Running the Club is complex and time consuming and we don't always get everything right! If you feel that something could be done better, please let me, or any of the other Club Officers know. Contact details are available at http://oldparkonians.org.uk/association.

Dave Westwater,
Chairman, Old Parkonians Association
dave.westwater@oldparkonians.org.uk

From Stew McEwen, Chairman, Old Parkonians Cricket Club

Stew McEwenNew season, new league!

During the winter the Cheshire Cricket Alliance merged with the UKFast Cheshire Cricket League. One of the main drivers for the merger was to secure the future of open cricket as both leagues lost member clubs. I hope the merger will maintain competitive cricket of Old Parkonians Cricket Club.

We have continued to recruit new players and more juniors are coming through to adult cricket. The Sunday Development XI has a full and competitive fixture list and as we have so many players available for selection it is important for those not selected for a Saturday to make themselves available on Sundays.

Pre-season maintenance work was undertaken by only a few members and there will be more work to do as the season progresses, so it's important that players respond to requests for help.

The Easter Social was a resounding success with herculean efforts being made by Aimée Brannon (our new Hon Treasurer) and Adam Winstanley. A special thank you goes to them and Adam Westwater for his Westy's Bongo Bingo. The horse racing, bingo and raffle made almost £1,000 for Club funds. Thanks should also go out to all those that donated prizes for various fun activities on the day.

After the unprecedented success of last season for both the First and Second XIs I hope everyone will do their bit to make this season just as successful.

Stew McEwen,
Chairman, Old Parkonians Cricket Club
stew.mcewen@oldparkonians.org.uk 

From Richie Beckett, Chairman, Oxton Parkonians RUFC

Richie Beckett'The 2016/17 Season has been a mixed one with the 1st Team finishing mid table in South Lancashire/ Cheshire Division 3 with a 50% record.

The 2nd Team has struggled at times but credit has to be given to the regulars in the team who ensured that the league programme was completed. We have had many injuries and varied player availability. My thanks goes to the outgoing Captains Terry Williams and Paul Lennon for their efforts throughout the season. As ever we must strive to recruit players as well as retaining our current squad!

This year our Annual Dinner welcomed Mark Palios, TRFC Chairman, as our principal guest and speaker. His speech was excellent and very well received by all present. Mark has since emailed to thank everyone at the Club for a wonderful evening.

Many thanks must go to Chris and Lesley Hall for the wonderful meal and to all the waiting on and bar staff who worked so hard. Much appreciated as always! A great event as ever.

Award Winners 2016-17

  • Most Improved Player Of The Year (Brian 'Gus' Cusick Memorial Award) : Kiel Williams
  • Young Player Of The Year : Jack Fletcher
  • Coaches 'Thank You' : Mark Hillan
  • 2nd Team Players' Player : Karl Whelan
  • 1st Team Players' Player : Liam Evans
  • 2nd Team Player Of The Year : Rob Rawson
  • Captain's Prize : Liam Evans
  • Chairman's Awards :
    • Dominic Verheijen (Long Service Loyalty And Reliability Playing Award)
    • Eric Nixon ( On The Field Playing Commitment Award)
  • Player Of The Year : Harry Eastwood
  • Clubman Of The Year : Paul Mullen

Congratulations to every award winner; all so richly deserved !!

I would like to place on record a massive thank you to both of our coaches, Duncan and Danae. Don't know what we would have done without you both in what has been quite a challenging season. Also a tremendous thank you to all my fellow Committee Members for their dedication, hard work and loyalty to both the club and myself.

Please don't forget the AGM on Wednesday 17th May at 7.30pm in the Clubhouse.

For full details see http://oldparkonians.org.uk/rugby/news

Richie Beckett.
Chairman, Oxton Parkonians RUFC
richie.beckett@oldparkonians.org.uk 

From Mark Hillan, Chairman, Oxton Parkonians Junior Rugby

Mark HillanThe Junior Section's younger age groups (U7 to U11) have had a great season and grow from strength, with some age groups losing only a couple of games all season.

They have all just competed in the Junior Festivals run by Cheshire at various locations around the county. Unfortunately the RFU have changed the format to non competitive so no trophies to be won. This is very frustrating for all concerned and we have complained to Cheshire over this matter.

The older age groups are finding it difficult to compete and struggle for numbers when playing against bigger clubs. It is increasingly difficult to find decent games against like minded clubs without travelling great distances.

The U16s have rallied well to finish the season with a win at home to Helsby or like us are a mixed side. They will be entering the Junior Colts league next season and are looking for sponsors to assist with travel and kit.

This team consists of many playing members' boys including Luke Hillan, Jay Barham, Jake Bennett and Matt Hassall and other boys who frequent the Club throughout the year. These boys are all hoping to make the transition into senior Rugby this season and will train with the sessions this Summer and into the season.

The Junior Colts play at 12 midday so hopefully some senior members may come and support them next season.

Any member who wants any more information regarding recruitment or sponsorship can speak to myself on 07720636692 or at meet me at the club any time.

Mark Hillan,
Chairman, Oxton Parkonians Junior Rugby
mark.hillan@oldparkonians.org.uk 

From Steve Williams, Fundraising Manager

Steve WilliamsWith the access road refurbishment being our biggest project we have much fundraising work ahead of us. There are several ways you can help the Club to raise funds...

Sponsorship

Again a big thank you to sponsors who have continued to support us.

Our efforts to find additional sponsors are ongoing.  If anyone is interested or knows of anyone who may be interested in being a sponsor please let me know.  This could be a club sponsor, a team sponsor or even sponsoring a cricket or rugby match.

Easyfundraising

Help raise funds!Help us raise funds by shopping online through https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/ When you shop, a proportion of what you pay is donated to the Club. You pay the same price, but you help with a donation.

There are a huge number of retailers involved with Easyfundraising and so whether it’s your weekly shop or buying Birthdays or even booking your summer holiday you can help the Club raise funds!

Development Membership

One way you can help is becoming a Bronze Silver or Gold Development Member with a monthly subscription of £10, £20 or £30 a month, with each including a donation to the Development Fund.

The support we have received via this has been invaluable to date and enabled the 2012 rebuild of the changing rooms to take place. Your membership subscription can be changed through your WebCollect account, but email Alan Morris on alan.morris@oldparkonians.org.uk if you would like any further information.

Steve Williams,
Fundraising Manager
steve.williams@oldparkonians.org.uk