Gloucestershire cricketers Brandon Gilmour and Miles Hammond joined youngsters in Knowle for a cricket coaching session yesterday to help launch the Lord’s Taverners Wicketz programme in the area after the charity received £50,000 of funding from Bristol Freemasons.
Using cricket as a tool for change, Wicketz is aimed at hard to reach youngsters within areas of high deprivation across the UK. The charity provides a sustainable cricket environment with a focus on social cohesion and developing crucial life skills such as respect, teamwork and self-confidence. The Wicketz hub in Knowle, the second to have been introduced in Bristol, has been made possible thanks to funding from the Freemasons over the next two years.
Their support will pay for coaching, playing facilities, equipment and ensure that weekly coaching sessions take place for youngsters in the local area. The Freemasons grant comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons across England and Wales.
Alan Vaughan from Bristol Freemasons said: “We’re very pleased to be able to support the Lord’s Taverners in providing this excellent project to help disadvantaged young people in Bristol. It’s great that the opportunities which have until now been available only in London are now here in Bristol as well.”
Gloucestershire off-spinner, Miles Hammond, said: “It’s been great being here supporting the Lord’s Taverners. The Wicketz programme is a wonderful initiative and all the Gloucestershire cricketers are fully behind it and its aim of providing more disadvantaged young people with a sporting chance.”
Lord’s Taverners ambassador and Gloucestershire batsman, Will Tavare, said: “It’s fantastic to see the Lord’s Taverners expanding the successful Wicketz programme to Bristol. It’s really important that these youngsters are given the opportunity to take part in sport, and this programme will reach Gloucestershire youngsters who would otherwise not have access to traditional cricket coaching and facilities.”
Paul Robin, Chief Executive of the Lord’s Taverners added: “The Wicketz programme has had a very positive impact since its introduction in areas of high deprivation within London. Now we’re looking to replicate that success throughout the UK, so it’s fantastic that in conjunction with the Gloucestershire Cricket Board and with the support of Bristol Freemasons, we can now provide disadvantaged youngsters in Knowle with the opportunity to play cricket.”
Find out more about the programme, by visiting https://www.gloucestershirecricketboard.com/community/bristol-wicketz/