The Pride of Cricket Award - for those who have made a considerable impact on the game over the course of a lifetime - was won by Steve Fletcher of Whitley Hall CC in Yorkshire.
Steve has made the development and operation of his cricket club his life’s work, having spent decades in a variety of roles, from president to women’s team coach to bar manager.
A coveted part of the Whitley Hall community, Steve received the second most votes of any nominee across the Pride of Cricket Awards.
His clubmate, Joe Webster, said: “It would take eight of us to replace him.
“Steve is Whitley Hall CC. He epitomises the club, what we are, how we go about things, and he is there for everything and everyone.
“He’s coached juniors, he ran the senior side, he runs the bar single-handedly and has done for as long as I can remember.
“His is a passion that’s natural, you don’t teach it. It’s a natural love of the game.”
Steve has been part of the cricket development of hundreds of kids in his area, including a certain England captain.
“For as long as I can remember, you’ve been the heartbeat of South Yorkshire cricket,” Joe Root said in a video message of congratulations.
“I’m extremely grateful for all that you do for cricket in our region. I know how much the guys appreciate you.”
Steve Fletcher of Whitley Hall CC
The LV= Insurance Club Hero award was won by Jim Burroughs, formerly of Billingshurst CC in West Sussex.
Jim played a critical part in the club’s move to new facilities, long held the role of chairman and only gave up the groundwork this year as he dealt with cancer.
He passed away on August 12, after the nomination for the Pride of Cricket Awards had been made, and his family asked for his name to remain part of the public vote, which he won by a considerable margin.
“He had a real passion about people and he wanted people to experience the best they possibly could at a cricket club,” Billingshurst chairman Jon Alexander said.
“Groundsman, coach, committee member, local councillor… there are a lot of roles he’s done.
“He had a determination and stubbornness which made sure he got what he wanted.”
Such was Jim’s standing in the eyes and hearts of the Billingshurst community, the club has renamed its ground in his honour: the Jim Burroughs Oval.
“That will be a lasting memory for anyone who goes there: whether it’s cricketers, dog walkers, fitness people or footballers. I think that’s quite poignant for the future and for every member of Billingshurt past and present.”
The LV= Insurance Media Hero award went to Simon Trott of Overton CC in Hampshire.
Simon has revolutionised Overton’s digital platforms, introducing live streaming, match highlights and podcasts, and promoting the club in a coherent and engaging way across social media.
His work has helped the club attract three times as many participants for junior initiatives than they have previously typically managed, as well as a host of sign-ups to the senior sides - allowing Overton to continue to field three adult teams.
“I don’t believe there are that many clubs, especially around us in Hampshire, that have someone like Simon.
“He is thinking not of how what he is doing can benefit him but how it can benefit what comes next - his children - and the sport of cricket.”
Simon Trott of Overton CC
Joe Lunn’s amazing efforts to raise money for charity after being diagnosed with a terminal illness saw him voted in as LV= Insurance Fundraising Hero posthumously. He received the most votes of any nominee in this year’s awards.
The Sutton CC wicketkeeper-batsman passed away in March, having previously been told by doctors he was unlikely to live beyond the end of 2019 following the diagnosis of a rare cancer.
Joe raised more than £16,000 on a solo bike ride on a static bike in his back garden in August 2020, while in excess of £35,000 has since been raised in his name. Five of his Sutton teammates are due to take on the London Marathon for his chosen charity, Rays Of Sunshine in October.
Sam Schofield, Joe’s teammate at Sutton, said: “It was basically Joe saying: ‘what’s going to be really hard, and how can I do it?’
“He never backed down from anything, and was always one you’d want on your side. He was always up for a bit of a battle and that was definitely how he took on his illness.”
The LV= Insurance Community Hero award went to Simon Jackson for his work both at Whitgift School and with the ACE programme.
Jackson, the academy head coach at Whitgift, came up with the idea to use the Whitgift facilities for ACE work, and continues to engage young people of all ages and from all backgrounds with the sport.
“He’s bringing the outside to us,” Hina Ghumra of Whitgift School said. “We’re a really diverse community and he’s taken what we can offer and married it with what he’s doing outside.”
Simon Jackson of Whitgift School and the ACE programme
Eleven-year-old Henry Dummott was named LV= Insurance Young Hero for his work in raising more than £2,000 for Corsham CC in Wiltshire.
Henry came up with the idea of a sponsored bowlathon after learning about altruism and charity at school, and did all the promotional groundwork himself before bowling unchanged for 100 minutes on three consecutive days.
“What’s very significant about it is that we’ve been telling him how proud we are but this really validates it,” his aunt, Belle Mayo, said.
LV= Insurance are the new title sponsor of the Pride of Cricket Awards. For more information visit LV.com/gi/cricket
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