MP puts positive spin on club’s fundraising – GazetteMarch 9th, 2012
MP puts positive spin on club’s fundraising
By ROSS ROBERTSON
Published on Thursday 8 March 2012 09:06
SOUTH Shields MP David Miliband showed he’s batting for good causes by helping revamp a historic cricket club.
The Labour big-hitter is working with Sunderland AFC’s former manager and player Len Ashurst to raise funds to upgrade facilities at Whitburn Cricket Club.
The club was founded in 1862 and featured some top names in its history, including legendary West Indian bowler Lance Gibbs.
Mr Miliband, who is Sunderland AFC non-executive vice-chairman, said: “Whitburn Cricket Club has a great history and 150 years of tradition to be proud of.
“Players such as Lance Gibbs and Lance Cairns have played for our local club.
“I was delighted to meet with Len Ashurst and colleagues from the club to hear about their fundraising activities to raise money for a new scoreboard and benches.
“I’m looking forward to doing a question and answer session about Sunderland Football Club in May to help towards their fundraising efforts”.
The MP played cricket for the London Erratics team as a student. Mr Ashurst is a former Whitburn cricketer. He said: “I played cricket here with Lance Gibbs.
“I was here for two years while I played for Sunderland.
“But my manager said ‘you either pack the cricket in or you pack the football in’.
“There was a risk of getting injured, you see.”
The two want to install new seating at the club, and an electronic scoreboard.
The fundraising event in May will coincide with Sunderland’s last home game of the season against Manchester United.
Mr Ashurst said: “We need to raise £10,000 in 18 months.”
Mr Ashurst made 458 senior appearances for Sunderland AFC between 1957 and 1971 and later went on to become manager at Roker Park.