The Trent Bridge heritage team report on how members and supporters felt as they endured an early season without the quintessential summer sport.
What, we’ve been musing, do cricket lovers do when there’s no cricket? Where do they go when Trent Bridge isn’t open?
For the faithful, an early-summer without cricket was unsettling. But as David Beaumont, who has been coming to the ground for more than fifty years, said, “Trent Bridge has always been about so much more than just the cricket.”
“Cricket to me is summer. Cricket at Trent Bridge is like being on a long, joyous summer holiday,” said member and regular Neil Kendrick as he looked forward to the late season start.
All the regulars we heard from spoke warmly about the ‘family’ at the ground; the people they meet and with whom they share their passion for the game. What they miss is not so much the crack of bat on ball but the 'craic' itself, as the Irish team that were to have visited this summer would call it.
One of our volunteers had a simple answer to the question ‘What have you missed most about Trent Bridge?’.
“Getting involved and meeting other people," was their reply. "The cricket, naturally, and the Trent Bridge atmosphere as well.”
“Cricket to me is summer. Cricket at Trent Bridge is like being on a long, joyous summer holiday,”
Elaine Morris, another volunteer, agrees. “I miss the camaraderie of working in a team of volunteers to create a safe and memorable event - and the banter with the spectators,” she said.
For Glyn and Clare Hughes, it is those rituals that take place before a ball is even bowled that they miss.
“It’s about the pre-match pint in the TBI, meeting in Bridgford for a bite to eat, even the walk up to the ground,” they commented.
“And it can be different for the different types of cricket. The atmosphere changes with the format and the rituals change too”.
“It’s the place to meet up, to chew the cud and catch up with friends – at times the game is almost ancillary to the social side of being at the ground”, said David Beaumont. He has kept in touch with members and supporters by phone or e-mail, but he misses the company.
Peter Johnson agrees that the social side of the game is really what he hankers for. “Whether it’s in my favourite spot in the Hound Road stand at Trent Bridge or walking the boundary ropes of the clubs in local cricket, I know that within ten minutes I’ll be chatting to old friends and making new ones.”
He and all the Trent Bridge faithful will be waiting out the time until they can settle down in their favourite spot on the ground, chat to some old mates…and mutter about how much better it all was when they were young.
If you are missing Trent Bridge and old friends, drop the heritage team a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.