MP presents trophy at charity cricket match
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert presented the trophy at a very special cricket match at Arundel Castle's cricket ground recently (28 August).
Two charities, The Clem Gibson Charitable Trust and The Arundel Castle Cricket Foundation, joined forces to give 22 children from inner city boroughs in London a day's cricket and a special day out at the beautiful cricket ground.
Youngsters from Tower Hamlets, Newham, Hackney and Greenwich, many of whom were playing on a real grass pitch for the first time, were invited to take part in the special event as part of an initiative for inner-city children running over the summer months, culminating in this final taking place in Arundel.
The 12 and 13-year olds receive little or no cricketing education at school and rely upon the few local clubs that exist and dedicated volunteers to inspire their interest in the game.
The special cricket match was enabled by a third charity, Capital Kids Cricket, which was set up to provide cricketing opportunities for primary school children in London.
The England all-rounder Ravi Bopara began to play through Capital Kids Cricket at Newham primary school.
The Clem Gibson Memorial Trophy was founded in memory of Clem Gibson who was a keen cricketer and had a passion for working with underprivileged children.
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert had a particular reason for wanting to take part in the special event as Clem Gibson, who farmed at Northiam in East Sussex, was his Grandfather.
Mr Herbert was joined by a large number of members of his family who gathered to support the day.
Peter Jones, Operations Manager of Capital Kids Cricket, said: "We can't thank the family enough for setting up the Clem Gibson Trophy and giving the players the opportunity to be able to play cricket in such a wonderful setting.
"The players really enjoyed the day and from what I understand it was all they were talking about on the journey home, both sides mixing together, discussing all things cricket. Fantastic!"
John Barclay, Director of Cricket and Coaching at the Arundel Castle Cricket Foundation, said: "The day was a real treat. We watched the players' self confidence build, and their team work was evident as they chatted away in groups all day long and enjoyed the whole experience. The teams embraced many cultures and backgrounds, and having lunch and tea together were also important social events.
"This is a start for these boys, maybe just a drop in the ocean, but one which will send out positive ripples in the areas where they live. For these reasons the day was a great success and one which will be repeated next year."
Speaking after the event, Nick Herbert said: "It was wonderful to see these young players from inner city London boroughs given the opportunity to play on Arundel Castle's beautiful ground. They obviously loved it, and it was a special day for all of us.
"I think that the Arundel Castle Cricket Foundation and Capital Kids Cricket do a fantastic job to extend opportunity to talented young players. I was so pleased that my family was able to support this special match in memory of my late grandfather. He would have been thrilled to see these youngsters given this chance."
Notes for Editors
1. For information about the Arundel Castle Cricket Foundation visit: http://www.arundelcastlecricketfoundation.co.uk/
2. For information about Capital Kids Cricket visit: http://www.capitalkidscricket.co.uk/