Wombwell Cricket Lovers' Society, founded in 1951, meet most Thursday's at Ardsley Oaks WMC near Barnsley in South Yorkshire between September and April each year. Meetings commence at 7.45pm and usually take the format of a talk by a cricket personality followed by a question and answer session. Guests from outside the cricketing world also make up the Society's winter programme. In addition to the weekly meetings, the Society also organises coaching award presentation evenings, a Christmas Sunday lunch event and, from time to time, a Spring Dinner.
Winter coaching classes began in 1953 with the aim of encouraging local cricket talent; and through the years a number of county and international players have emerged such as: Graham Stevenson, Arnie Sidebottom, Tim Boon, Martyn Moxon, and Darren Gough. Coaching awards are linked to the memory of former Society Patron's Brian Johnston and John Arlott and former Society officials Jack Sokell, Derek Moxon, Eric Sykes and current Society President, Dickie Bird OBE.
Awards are presented annually to youngsters for batting, bowling, fielding, and wicketkeeping. The Society also presents a number of other annual awards including: Cricket Writer, Cricket Commentator, County Captain, Young Cricketer, and Cricketer of the Year as well as a Wicketkeeper of the Year award and one in memory of Learie Constantine for Fielder of the Year. Other local cricket awards are also presented on occasions.
In addition to the weekly meetings, dinners, coaching classes, and awards the Society also produces its own annual publication. The Twelfth Man (first issued in 1954) is an A4 style magazine which includes a number of feature articles, reviews the Society's winter meetings, news, provides details of award winners, and book reviews. Each year the magazine also includes a special tribute section to a post-war cricket personality. Recent tributes have included David Gower OBE in 1995, a joint tribute to Denis Compton CBE and Keith Miller MBE in 1996, Mike Gatting OBE in 1997 and 1999 a joint tribute to former Yorkshire and England cricketers Don Wilson and Philip Sharpe. A 50th Anniversary edition was published in 2001 and a very special Diamond Anniversary edition in September 2011 when the Society celebrated sixty years of 'cricket loving'.
There are no membership formalities. The Membership Secretary will be pleased to deal with any queries. Subscriptions are as follows:
Junior membership does not include a copy of The Twelfth Man..
Anyone wishing to take out membership should apply to the Membership Secretary, Beryl Ambler, Park Cottage, Cortworth Lane, Wentworth, Rotherham, S62 7SB. Tel: 01226 747516
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