Howzat for fundraising? Harpenden Cricket Club holding charity day

PUBLISHED: 12:00 14 August 2016

Local cricketers from all over Hertfordshire will be taking part in HAD's all-inclusive cricket day

Local cricketers from all over Hertfordshire will be taking part in HAD's all-inclusive cricket day


Proving that cricket has no boundaries, a charity is holding an all-inclusive cricket day in Harpenden next Sunday, August 21.

Richard Hill (right) and Andy Catherell at Harpenden Cricket ClubRichard Hill (right) and Andy Catherell at Harpenden Cricket Club

Herts Action on Disability (HAD) is based in Welwyn Garden City but is holding the event at Harpenden Cricket Club where a wheelchair/learning disabilities match will be followed by a game between HAD and Harpenden.

Richard Hill, in his capacity as the English Cricket Board’s (ECB) disability operations manager, has pulled together some top Herts cricketers, including Letchworth’s Andy Catherell and Bishop’s Stortford’s Chris Foster.

Andy, 39, has a degenerative condition that has caused the vertebrae in his spine to crumble. He also has a genetic problem with his left knee and the two conditions combined have put him in a wheelchair for the past five years.

The batsman/wicket-keeper said: “It’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me. Since I was 13 all I ever wanted to do was play county cricket but I was small for my age and a bit of a late developer and didn’t make the grade.

“But at the age of 34 I found myself in a wheelchair playing county cricket for Herts and Essex as well as club cricket with Letchworth and now I’m in dreamland playing the game I love 365 days a year.”

When Chris Foster was 12 he was coached by Richard and five years later he was bowling at 70mph. Chris, now 26, is a through hip amputee with no prosthetic limb and hops in to bowl. “To watch Chris bowl is amazing,” Richard said.

The all-day family event starts at 11am and will also feature coaching, food and refreshments. Cricketers young and old and of all abilities are welcome and should just turn up on the day.

HAD enables older and disabled people to lead an independent life.

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I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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