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Royal honour for Denholme Cricket Club stalwart
Jack Greenwood – Denholme’s ‘Mr Cricket’ – has won another gong.
Following on from his England and Wales Cricket Board’s lifetime achievement award, the 82-year-old club stalwart was then nominated by the governing body for a Torch Trophy Trust award – and he lifted that too.
One of cricket’s gentlemen received the award from HRH The Princess Royal last week at the Royal Army and Navy Club in London.
It was the first time that the ECB had put anyone forward for the accolade, which celebrates the tireless work of sport’s unsung heroes, and Jack and the 18 other recipients certainly fit into that category.
Jack’s main role was as club scorer, which he did for 40 years before retiring. He now turns his hand to anything to help maintain the club every year, including painting benches, the tea room, changing rooms and the clubhouse walls.
His fund-raising efforts have brought over £30,000 into the club, the money being used to improve facilities and encourage more people to play cricket.
Over the years, Jack has helped hundreds of people – quite probably thousands – and he has given over 20 hours a week to cricket for 55 years.
Jack, who also won a Yorkshire Cricket Board lifetime achievement award last summer, said of his latest accolade: “I am very proud and honoured. It was something I didn’t expect.
“It was a wonderful occasion and I was made up to receive the award from Princess Anne.
“She was very good and just had no edge to her. Meeting her tops everything off but receiving my ECB award at Lord’s was also wonderful.”
Ann Coe, secretary of the Mewies Solicitors Craven League, had heard good things about Jack even before Denholme joined the league in 2000.
In her letter of support for Jack’s nomination to the ECB, she wrote: “Without volunteers like Jack, cricket at grass-roots level would not take place.
“My view is that too many cricketers just turn up to play and then disappear again until the next match.
“It would be wonderful if these players thought for a moment – how does everything get prepared for them? Who does the ground? Who prepares the wicket? Who cleans paints and repairs the pavilion?
“If they did ask at Denholme, then the answer is Jack.”
The ceremony held by the Torch Trophy Trust – a charity that recognises and rewards volunteers in sport and recreation – was made even more special by a lifetime achievement award to their president, Sir Bobby Charlton CBE.
Supporting the awards were Lizzy Yarnold, winner of a skeleton bob gold medal in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
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