In the heart of Yorkshire, the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation is making strides in empowering young individuals through the Wicketz programme.

Wicketz is a cricket programme for young people aged 8-19, living in deprived communities, funded by Lords Taverners. By establishing sustainable community cricket hubs, Wicketz provides year-round weekly cricket sessions with a focus on breaking down barriers, developing crucial life skills, creating stronger communities and enabling brighter futures for those taking part. August and September have been bustling with exciting events and activities, keeping the Leeds, Bradford and Hull communities engaged and enthusiastic. Let’s dive into the highlights of this community-driven initiative that is shaping the future of cricket and youth development.

Beach Cricket Extravaganza

August kicked off with a bang as the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation organised two thrilling Beach Cricket days at the picturesque Scarborough beach. These events weren’t just about the sport; they were about forging bonds and creating memories. On the 1st and 3rd of August, young participants from Leeds/Bradford and Hull descended upon the sandy shores to partake in a beach cricket tournament.

YCF Wicketz Beach Cricket participants

The participants, aged 8-16, competed against their peers from across various Yorkshire Cricket Foundation community programmes. These days weren’t just about cricket; they were a celebration of friendship, fun, and, of course, the famous Scarborough fish and chips. The icing on the cake was a visit to North Marine Road to witness Yorkshire CCC in action.

Remarkably, these trips also served as a unique experience for some participants, thanks to the generous support of Northern Rail who have teamed up with YCF.  Many of the young cricket enthusiasts enjoyed their very first train journey, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

National Wicketz Residentials

August was also a month of travel and learning as the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation took participants to three National Wicketz Residentials. These trips were a testament to the commitment of the programme to holistic development, combining cricket with educational workshops and cultural experiences.

YCF Wicketz residential participants

YCF Wicketz residential participants

From the 7th to the 9th of August, the young people from Leeds, Bradford and Hull embarked on a journey to Worcester University. Here, they joined over 150 young participants from all corners of the country, engaging in cricket tournaments and educational workshops.

On the 11th to the 13th of August, Leeds/Bradford sent a group of young people aged over 15 to Malvern College. Interacting with more than 60 peers from across the UK, they deepened their love for cricket and absorbed valuable life lessons.

Meanwhile, on the 21st to the 23rd of August, the programme continued its commitment to gender inclusivity by sending female participants to Repton School. This trip fostered not only cricket skills but also cultural understanding, as participants had the opportunity to meet individuals from diverse backgrounds.

HAF Days in Hull

Wicketz Hull took an active role in enriching the lives of children during the summer holidays by delivering five days of Holiday Activity and Food (HAF) to over 30 children. The initiative not only engaged current Wicketz participants but also introduced the joys of cricket to some non-attendees. Hull City Council provided essential support by providing food, drinks, and healthy snacks, ensuring the children’s well-being.

Looking Ahead to September

As September unfolds, the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation’s Wicketz programme is gearing up for the next chapter. The focus shifts indoors as the programme continues its weekly hub sessions across various locations. This move ensures that young participants have the opportunity to play cricket regularly, even during the winter months.

Furthermore, exciting events are on the horizon for the October half-term, promising more opportunities for youngsters to engage with the sport.

Join the Wicketz Journey

The Wicketz programme is more than just cricket. It’s a community-driven initiative that empowers young individuals, fosters friendships, and provides life-changing experiences. Through cricket, education, and cultural exchange, Wicketz is sowing the seeds of a brighter future for the youth of Leeds, Bradford, and Hull.

If you’re looking to be a part of this incredible journey, here are the session details:

Leeds/Bradford:

Monday’s 5pm-7pm @ Trinity Academy Leeds, (LS9 7QL)

Tuesday’s 6pm-8pm @ Park Avenue Cricket Ground, (BD5 0PY)

Friday’s 6pm-8pm @ Karmand Community Centre, (BD3 9EP)

Sunday’s 3:30pm-5:30pm @ Bilal Sports Centre, (LS8 5BZ)

Hull:

Monday’s 3:15pm-4:15pm @ St Richards VC Academy, Hull (HU9 5TE) ages 8 – 11

Monday’s 3:15pm-4:15pm @ Archbishop Sentamu Academy (HU9 5YB) ages 11 – 14

Wednesday’s 3:15pm-4:15pm @ Newland School for Girls (HU6 7RU) ages 11-14 Girls Only

Wednesday’s 6pm-7pm @ Kelvin Hall School, Hull (HU5 4QH) ages 8 – 16

Thursday’s 3:15pm-4:15pm @ Sirius Academy West, Hull (HU4 7JB) ages 8 – 14

The Yorkshire Cricket Foundation’s Wicketz programme invites you to join the cricketing adventure, where sport meets community, friendship, and personal growth. It’s more than just a game; it’s a journey of empowerment and opportunity.

For more information please contact [email protected] (Leeds & Bradford) or [email protected] (Hull)

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