Sport Yorkshire SY01 Web - Page 41

North Leeds for 5’s, 7’s, 9’s & 11’s, this project when it is completed will be named the Tom Coupe Junior Oval in memory of one of our junior cricketers who tragically passed away last year. Tom had played all his junior cricket at the club and was a very popular member; we are planning to have the big opening of the oval on Tuesday 20th August just before the Headingley Test, fingers crossed we can get some big names to be part of this magnificent and special event. SY: How important development to the club? is youth SW: Youth development is huge; we have over 160 juniors with 40 on the waiting list, all our senior sides have mostly juniors who have come through the junior ranks and our committee has 12 ex junior players now serving in one way shape or form. The importance to the club and our investment in our juniors and the impact we have on our junior community cannot be underestimated. SY: How does the club ensure that young players enjoy a smooth transition into the senior game? SW: When the junior has been noticed by players/coaches he/she will be drafted up into the 3rd team and he will be nurtured and their progress monitored by seniors and our wider cricketing community. SY: Would you consider yours to be a community club? SW: 100%, all the local schools feed into the club at some age group, this link goes back nearly 100 years with Roundhay High School as ex pupils have played a huge role in the club’s history and development. We have a running club using our clubhouse with nearly 350 members, Pilates is done inside the club on a Mon/Tues, every year we hold a Charity Beer Festival run by the Rotary Club which attracts thousands, the club is available for hiring for Birthdays/ Christenings/Wakes and Children’s parties. Our community roots are the life blood of the club, it is nurtured. We are the North Leeds Cricket and Bowling Club so members evolve from cricket to bowling, all playing a continuing part in sport and our community. SY: What do you believe could be some of the biggest challenges the club may face in the coming years? SW: Keeping the kids involved and growing the coaching side of the club while keeping control of the outgoings. The popularity of cricket as a game is also under threat and we need to do our best to promote our game at all levels. We need, as many clubs do, to see more funding finding its way down to the grass roots because this is where the next Joe Roots Jonny Bairstows start their journeys! SY: What are the clubs ambitions for the next five years? for the 1st team to have some success as it is over fifty years since they have won anything major. Keeping the committee and the members energised to strive to offer a fantastic experience when people come to play/visit North Leeds and ensuring that we create something for future generations to enjoy. SW: Maintaining a steady income to keep on improving the club playing facilities, creating a sustainable model for future generations to manage easily, 41