Record turnout

More than sixty volunteers put the finishing touches to a makeover which left the Jesmond Ground looking “the best for many a year”.

As the 125th anniversary approaches, the Cricketforce springclean was supported by local families, players, juniors and workmates from Thomson Travel and NatWest Gosforth.

And the chefs from Newcastle’s Assembly Rooms provided the perfect energy boost by making special snacks based on Victorian recipes – to mark the recent discovery that funds to create the cricket ground were raised at a Fancy Dress Ball there in April 1887.

Improvements carried out included painting the biggest boundary fence (our “Everest”!), benches, gates, railings and hoardings right around the pitch. Other fences were stained, and terraces and the player balcony were cleared ready for the new season.

This followed a busy winter which saw investment of more than £200K in new accessible facilities including a brand new entrance; a new fascia and roof for the Pavilion; and refurbishment of the interior, thanks to new sponsor Thomson.

This was the culmination of six years of restoration by leaseholders Newcastle’s Royal Grammar School and the new Newcastle Cricket Club, which took on the ground following a two year public campaign to ensure its future.

Young club members refuelling before getting back to the painting.

The Cricketforce efforts at the Jesmond Ground were selected by the ECB in the area as their Showcase Club. Last year the commitment of the volunteers won a regional OSCA – Outstanding Service to Cricket Award.

Assembly Rooms owner Antony Michaelides donates hundreds of tasty Victorian snacks

More details and pictures on Cricketforce page.

The clock's ticking to the start of the new season...

Toddlers paint low down...

Undercoating the gates