A Word from the Chairman …
Chairman’s Report – June 2010
It is not yet twelve months since we formed our branch of The Lord’s Taverners, yet we seem to have done so much. Apart from supporting, both financially and in spirit, the activities of our national “parent” body, we have achieved a significant amount of assistance for a range of people.
The national branch supports blind, deaf, indigenous and intellectually disabled cricket, and we have financially supported each of these programs. Our President, Warren Noble, together with both of our wives, attended the Tri-Series cricket competition between South Africa, England and Australia. We were surprised at the quality of cricket played and were proud to meet some of the participants at the Awards dinner. The young players might have lacked social finesse and skills, but they were genuinely grateful for the opportunity that The Lord’s Taverners gave them to enjoy such competition.
Warren and I also joined in the national Annual Conference and were warmly welcomed by all branch delegates and the national personnel. We felt as if we belonged right from the start and look forward to the next Annual Conference in Brisbane.
As well as our national responsibilities, we have achieved a good start at the local level. We are yet to achieve our goal of becoming less “Lismore-centric” through our willing group of Captains. We have not yet given them either the opportunity to have a major input into our programs, or the back-up that they might require to make Taverners an influence in their respective regions but this is high on our agenda for the coming year.
We have recently given significant financial help to four young cricketers from the local area. Sammy-Jo Johnson is playing in the Cumbrian competition in the U.K., representing both women (in the English Women’s leagues) and a men’s team in local competition. The youngsters in the beautiful Lakes District of England are benefitting from Sammy’s coaching as well as her playing ability. Ryan Howard is playing with Harrow St Mary’s in an inner London competition and has recently scored his second century of the season. Ryan is a qualified coach as well as a very good player, so I am sure the youngsters of Harrow are benefitting from his presence. Jake Hellyar and Kale Hare are both to travel soon with the Wanderers Cricket team for a tour of England, playing matches throughout the country and cities. All four youngsters have received our support and we look forward to hearing of their experiences when they return.
The Lismore Festival of Cricket was a huge success in every way except financially and the accolades received by the Lismore City Council were many. It was good that we could play a leading role in the conduct of that 10-day festival. As a brand new organisation, the jobs we were asked to undertake required close and cooperative activities from many of our members. These allowed us to get to know each other very well. It was ten days of very hard work, but a great team-building exercise. Among other outcomes, we saw a substantial increase in our membership – the special result of our fellowship moments with invited guests to our marquee. It is hoped that the financial loss to the Council will not prevent a future Festival.
Our inaugural launch – a dinner in the Gordon Pavilion at Oakes Oval in Lismore coinciding with an Australian Cricketers “Golden Oldies” event on the adjoining floodlit ground, was a spectacular evening where guest speakers included Rodney Hogg and Greg Ritchie. Our new branch was welcomed by Lismore’s Mayor, Jenny Dowell and officially declared “alive” by Warren Noble, the Inaugural President. Apart from the wonderful viewing of some of our local, bright, young cricketers going up against Michael Bevan, Wayne Holdsworth, Phil Emery, Greg Blewett, Greg Ritchie, Rod Hogg, and so on, a fabulous meal was enjoyed by all and again our membership increased significantly during the night and in the following days.
Of late, we have enjoyed some excellent fellowship amongst our members with a cricket “event” (I am reluctant call it a match!) on the Sam Trimble Oval at Bexhill, near Lismore. It was nice to see some of our former champions joining forces with (or against) wives and friends, and to remember former glory and dedication. A barbeque lunch was welcomed by all and a formal committee meeting followed – at which some very good decisions were made. Another fun night was held at the Lismore Workers Club and our resident Social Coordinator, Chris Shevellar, entertained us all with his great sense of humour.
We are continually looking for opportunities to “do what we do do well” (a good title for a song?) and with every meeting we have our active members give earnest consideration to upcoming activities. Watch out for our role in running a local schools’ cricket competition, to our role in working with the Southern Cross University in providing special opportunities for remote/disadvantaged/indigenous kids, as well as our endeavours in supporting various regional cricket and other sports.
The future with our talented and dedicated group of people is very exciting.