The Yorkshire County Cricket Club today announced that Lord Kamlesh Patel will step down as Chair at the Club’s next Annual General Meeting.
Lord Patel, who joined Yorkshire in November 2021, has overseen a significant period of change which culminated in international cricket returning to Headingley.
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion has been at the heart of this change to ensure that Yorkshire Cricket is a Club for everyone. Key changes have included offering a safe space for whistleblowers to report discrimination, integrating gold standard governance processes under the guidance of the Good Governance Institute and working to achieve accreditation with the National Centre for Diversity.
Important steps have also been taken to ensure that matchdays at Headingley, Scarborough and York are more inclusive and offer a friendly atmosphere for all. Others key changes to the matchday experience at Headingley have included the introduction of a texting service to report discriminatory behaviour confidentially, more family friendly alcohol-free areas and sensory rooms to offer a calmer space for those with sensory processing issues.
Removing cost barriers and creating opportunities to diversify Yorkshire’s Pathway programme has already seen great success. The boys Pathway programme has seen a nearly 40% increase in attendees for regional observations, and an increase of 60% of cricketers selected from a diverse background at County Age Group when compared with 2021. Girls County Age Group nominations have already increased by 60.7% from 2021.
Lord Kamlesh Patel, The Yorkshire County Cricket Club Chair said: “It has been an honour and a privilege to work for such a prestigious organisation.
“I have made the difficult decision to step aside at the next AGM and enable the Club to continue on its important journey of change under a new Chair.
“I would like to thank those Members who have been hugely supportive of the changes that the Board have introduced at Headingley. I would also like to thank the staff and Board Members who have all worked tirelessly during what has been a transformational period in Yorkshire’s history.
“There is still much for the Club to do, but I have the strongest faith that Yorkshire will be back at the pinnacle of English cricket for the long-term.”
Stephen Vaughan, The Yorkshire County Cricket Club Chief Executive said: “Kamlesh should be extremely proud of what he has achieved at Headingley during his tenure as Chair.
“The structures that have been put in place are vital in ensuring that Yorkshire is a Club that people are proud to be associated with.
“Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity are at the heart of our Club and I am excited to work with the Board, executive team and new Chair to continue on this journey of meaningful change.”