We're crowdfunding £20,000 to put towards new practice nets that will hugely improve our cricketing facilities.
Who are we?
We are the Oxford and Bletchingdon Nondescripts, a cricket club deeply rooted in the heart of Oxfordshire. Our club stands as a symbol of unity, inclusivity, and the joy of playing cricket. We have always prided ourselves on being one of the most diverse clubs in the region, welcoming players from various backgrounds, cultures, and walks of life.
We run three senior teams and a junior section (U11 and U13 mixed), playing in the Cherwell league. We are also home to the Hobos cricket club. In the winter, the cricket ground is also used by Bletchingdon Junior and Senior Football Club. We would like to offer All Stars cricket and Dynamos programme but this will mainly be possible if our facilities are safe.
U11 Team playing in the Oxfordshire league
As a club we are active in the community and run family orientated events through the year as well as offering a high quality and great value space for private and community functions.
Why are we crowdfunding?
We are raising money in order to buy new net practice facilities to help deliver our vision of providing excellent cricket facilities to Bletchingdon and the surrounding areas to increase participation in the sport and provide a high quality community asset.Our current facility is no longer fit for purpose and is significantly impacting our offering, and restricting the ability to scale our participation in cricket at both junior and senior level.
The past few years have been incredibly challenging for our club. First, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, disrupting our operations and causing a significant financial strain. We rallied together, believing that our passion and determination would see us through the storm.
But the storm we faced was not just metaphorical. In February 2022, Storm Eunice and Storm Franklin battered our beloved club with devastating force, causing extensive damage to our net facilities.
The repair costs have been overwhelming. For years, we tried to bounce back from adversity without seeking external funding. But now, the fear of losing the ability to provide safe training facilities for both juniors and seniors and encourage more locals to play cricket has become all too real. That's why we are reaching out to our community, to you, for support.
Our existing facility and after the storm damage is shown below:
The facility we would like to install is a ECB approved two-lane cage style net facility. A net facility such as this enables greater access to cricket for all ages and abilities. It allows easier access for 1-2-1 coaching as well as small group practices. Additionally, it allows cricket to be played at the ground out of season or in slightly inclement weather. This new facility will enable safer cricket practice in the nets. Currently, due to unsafe bounce and inadequate lane protections, there's a higher risk of being hit by the ball, hindering safe practice sessions.
Design of a 2 lane net cage:
How we’ll spend the money raised
The money raised in this crowdfunding will go towards the cost of the new net facility and repairing any other damaged infrastructure.
Juniors fun-day at the club for the families
Adding this new facility to our club and improving our overall offering will have direct benefits to the local community by increasing participation in local grass roots sport. As a club we have really raised our profile in the local community over the past 5 years. Here's a few highlights on how we play a role
Midweek T20 team
Diversity and Inclusivity: Our club is a shining example of what unity in diversity looks like. We take pride in being one of the few that provides opportunities for the less privileged to engage in the sport of cricket. This includes reaching out to the roots of Oxford, particularly those in low socio-economic and Black Asian Minority Ethnic groups. As someone who is Black and from the Caribbean, I personally understand the limited opportunities for playing cricket in the UK. When I arrived in Oxford a decade ago, I was surprised to find that opportunities were not universally accessible with playing cricket and having a fair opportunity.We have effectively supported a considerable number of Afghan refugees in cricket, offering mentorship throughout their journey. However, this represents only a fraction of the potential impact our club can have. Our club stands out as a welcoming and inclusive environment, offering equal opportunities for everyone to have fun and enjoy the sport.
Community Outreach: We have opened our doors to refugees, providing them with a sense of belonging, friendship, and the chance to embrace a beloved sport. Our community expands to the roots of Oxford targeting those with less of opportunity of playing the sport and enjoying it too. In our juniors' program, we've witnessed several talented female players go on to represent Oxfordshire County.120 cricket and social members actively involved in the club - the new nets would directly benefit our current and future junior and senior members
Captain Devane Warner: I'm the current senior team captain, hailing from the Caribbean Island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, symbolises the club's spirit of inclusivity, transcending boundaries, and leading with distinction.
Promotion and Young Talent: Our first team was promoted this season, and our team comprises students from Oxford Brookes and Oxford University. We offer a young, friendly environment that encourages students and local talent to be part of our journey. We have around 50 children aged 5-13 engaged in cricket at the club and representing us in the Oxfordshire Youth Competition.
We're passionate about cricket and creating a high quality facility for both oxford and the Bletchingdon Community.
How you can play your part
There are four simple ways to help us reach our target, and make this project a reality.
1. Make a pledge. Don’t delay if you’re going to support us because momentum is key to our success!
2. Spread the word. Share our project on your social media pages and tell the world to get behind us! The more people we reach, the more support we will get.
3. Offer rewards. Get involved if you are a local business by donating things we can offer to our supporters. We will give you a shout out!
4. Fundraise for us. If you want to run your own fundraiser – maybe a sponsored activity or similar – use the 'contact project' button at the top of our page to let us know. Setting up your own page only takes a few minutes and you won’t need any bank details. Just a fun idea!