THE ESSEX LEAGUE have ensured its members that they will do what they can amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, despite news that their sponsor, Shepherd Neame, will be unable to offer financial support for the next two years.
With cricket on hold for the foreseeable future, clubs were handed a boost with the news that county affiliation fees had been reduced to a £20 deposit which will be reviewed at the end of September.
Furthermore, the Essex League provided added assistance with the news that league fees would be held back until the conclusion of the 2020 campaign in whatever form that might be.
A statement posted on www.essexcricket .com explained; All businesses are under pressure, and it was no surprise that we have heard from our main league sponsor Shepherd Neame that they will not be able to support us in 2020 or 2021.
The challenges facing their industry are obviously unprecedented but we are hugely indebted to them for all their support over the previous years.
We will continue to be named the Shepherd Neame Essex League for the 2020 season.
We are going through all our finances following this to make sure that they are watertight and future-proofed.
Meanwhile, it has been suggested that clubs produce contingency plans covering various eventualities, despite the continued uncertainty, adding; We firstly want to assure you all that as a committee we want to try and get as much cricket played as possible this year – but that we are also realistic about the challenges that we are facing. The health of both the clubs and all of your members is paramount.
With all English professional cricket postponed until May 28 at the earliest, clubs have been advised to contact councils and landlords over ground rent, suggesting they discuss the possibility of a rent holiday or reduction.
Clubs are urged to play a pivotal role in the community at this time by setting up online activities for their members, to providing facilities to the local community as a hub for Storage, Food Banks other NHS facilities, also they must continue supporting their members who may need support a call at this time.
Imminently scheduled meetings involving all the adult and youth participating leagues will cover the challenges, opportunities and community spirit displayed throughout the county, with further information on all topics made available via http://www.essexcricket.org.uk/community/.