Words by: Lara Harper
Frampton-On-Severn Cricket Club was founded in 1847 for the local community and is situated on the longest village Green in England; a very picturesque setting. We are very lucky to have two grounds, with our second ground situated on Whitminster Lane, just a short walk from the Green.
We have three adult teams: the first XI play in the Gloucestershire County league and the 2nd and 3rd XIs play in the Stroud league division 1 and 2 respectively. The ladies enjoy social softball cricket at festivals and league matches and we also have a ladies hardball squad who play in the GCB North League.
We have a large youth section, which we are very proud of. We have children playing cricket from the age of four to 17 years. Our youth set up includes All Stars cricket, U9 boys and girls, U11 boys and girls, U13 boys and girls and U15 squads. They play in the Stroud Youth League and the girls are also involved in the Gloucestershire Girls League.
Getting ladies interested in the game has been a slow process but it has really taken off over the past few years. I think the introduction of the softball festivals, organised by the Gloucestershire Cricket Board, has really helped with this. I also think their ‘Champagne Moments’ helped! From this, our club developed players, each of whom in turn encouraged friends to get involved. We have a lovely coach, Patrick Tate, who has simplified things and made it easy to learn the different batting and bowling techniques and made it fun! We have a large group of around 30 ladies now registered as either softball players, hardball players or both. All the ladies involved had never played before and all had various sporting abilities, but we have supported and encouraged each other along with support and guidance from Patch, Jeanette Tate and Claire Lyes. Patch gradually introduced hardball to those of us who wanted to give it a go and we are all really enjoying it.
Last season was our second season in the hardball league and as a team we improved with every game and thoroughly enjoyed it. It is very difficult to pick just one club legend as we have so many fantastic members who get involved and give up their time to be a committee member, arrange fixtures, stock the bar, arrange friendlies, maintain the pitches, coach, organise social events and all the other things that go on behind the scenes to make our club a success, but it would have to be Jeanette Tate. Jeanette has been involved in the club for many years and has taken on many
roles over that time; she is a driving force behind the women’s team. Jeanette comes to our games to support us and score for us as often as possible, she also arranges fixtures and festivals for our girl’s teams…oh and she makes a great Victoria Sponge!
The thing that makes our club special is that it is family-centred. We have mums in ladies’ teams, dads in men’s teams and children in the youth section. Each member of the family cheers on and supports their family member at their matches. We hold an annual event at the end of August called ‘Crickfest’ which is a festival of cricket and music for everybody in our cricket community. There are cricket games played for all age groups, BBQ, face painting, a bouncy castle and stage set up with music and bands in the evening. It brings us all together as a club and we all celebrate each other’s success over the season.
The next steps for our club would be to have our Clubhouse on the green extended to accommodate our ever-growing cricket community and improve facilities for our visitors. Our hope for the female game is to improve on our last season and give the ladies more opportunities to train throughout the year, which will improve their confidence and hopefully encourage more to get involved in the hardball game.
The Club’s impact on me is massive. I never thought cricket would be ‘for me’. I think years of watching my dad play when I was a child gave me the impression that the game was slow and boring. I have always played competitive sport, mainly in the form of football which is quite physical and fast paced – the opposite of what I thought cricket was. I had recently stopped playing due to having three boys who play a lot of sport and not really having time for my own hobbies. After a couple of years of Jeanette nagging me to get involved, I decided to give it a go and I discovered that it is not as easy as it looks! I love a challenge and found myself wanting to perfect my game. I very quickly began to really enjoy it and encourage everybody I know to get involved. Most members of our team are mums of a similar age, who have never played before and we all support each other and have so much fun. I have made many friends through playing cricket and being part of the cricket club. My husband and eldest son play for the men’s first XI and my youngest son will be playing for the U11’s this season (hopefully). My middle son is going to be helping with coaching, so it really is a family affair, and they always come to watch my games and support me. I enjoy it so much that I have now become ladies captain and I encourage everyone to get involved. It is lovely to be part of a team again and be doing something that I enjoy and is just for me.