Cheriton's ground a cut above thanks to new machinery + Pennon find grant of £13,000 to keep ground in tip-top condition

Left to right are John Waite, Jeremy Tricks, James Gordon, Jim Cutler, Will Carr and Nick Guscott with Cheriton

CHERITON Fitzpaine’s ground at Hayne is a cut above the rest now thanks to a helping hand from Pennon Environmental.

Pennon – an environmental infrastructure company in the same group as Viridor and South West Water – has stumped up a grant of £13,000 for new ground keeping machinery.

Clubman Charles Sheldrake put together the grant application, which Cheriton feel fortunate to have obtained.

The money has been spent on new outfield cutters, a pitch roller and a new mower.

With 35 days of cricket on the ground ever summer, the machinery will be put to good use.

The mower – a Dennis 510 for the technically minded – has interchangeable cutting cassettes for different tasks such as vertidraining and scarifying.

Mike Foan, the club’s long-serving fixture secretary, said the new machinery will ensure the ground is in tip-tip condition for next month’s big event.

“Every Thursday throughout the season we play a T20 competition on the ground – the League of Friends - building to finals day when the top four play-off,” said Foan.

“Exeter Erratics finished top of the league last year and Yeoford were the winners on finals day.

“Finals day this year is on Sunday, August 13 and if say so myself it is a must in the diary for cricket lovers.

“Great competition in a lovely, rural setting, barbecue and bar and home-made cakes and cream teas – village cricket at its best.”

Obtaining the grant topped off the club’s diamond jubilee season in a perfect way.

It was exactly 60 years ago this week that Cheriton played their first match. The Blight brothers – 80 year old Maurice and 77 year old Peter – played in that match and still fits in the odd game today.

Enjoying the cricket at Cheriton Fitzpaine at last year's League of Friends play-offs