It is with the utmost regret that I must open this report on a sombre note and recall that during the year the club suffered a great loss through the deaths of Mr. F. E. Gregory and Mr. K. H. Brearly who were both so actively involved in the affairs of the club.
Without the help and guidance of Frank Gregory in the field of Ground Development, Trent Bridge might well be closed. He gave freely of his considerable talent, time and energy over many years, and during his term as President he was a generous and gracious ambassador of the club.
Ken Brearly had a great love for the game and with his complete dedication to the cause of Trent Bridge was the natural successor to Frank Gregory as Chairman of the Projects Sub Committee. His sudden death came as a great shock and caused a gap in our ranks that will be difficult to fill.
More recently came the news of the death of Mr. J. E. S. Browne, a former Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire and a Vice-President of the club. The generous co-operation and help that we receive from the police are a legacy from his devotion to the club.
They are all greatly missed.
The 1976 season produced a feast of wonderful cricket in marvellously good weather which, in bringing delight to most of us, introduced many problems in the care of the Ground. Here I must pay particular tribute to our head groundsman, Ron Allsopp and his staff who managed to maintain a standard of excellence despite the longest dry spell in living memory.
The team made a wonderful start to the season, particularly in the one-day cricket, and at the mid way point we all had high hopes for a major success in the John Player League. However, several untimely injuries and a lack of depth in replacements proved too much of an obstacle and we faded towards the end. But I am sure that Mike Smedley and his team can look forward with confidence to the coming season and that the vast improvement in our playing fortunes will continue with success.
We are all delighted with the progress of our younger players and in particular the selection of Derek Randall for the M.C.C. Tour of India and Sri Lanka which is a thoroughly deserved recognition of his talent, dedication and enthusiasm for the game. I am sure you join me wishing him every success.
The Test Match as Trent Bridge last season against the West Indies was most successful and in the wonderful weather received tremendous support from the Nottingham public. We hope the 3rd Test Match against the Australians will prove equally successful. On the first day, Thursday 28 July, we shall be honoured with a visit by Her Majesty the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh who will meet both teams during the tea interval.
The Committee have awarded a benefit to Mike Harris in 1977 in recognition of seven years valuable service to the club and I am sure you will give him your encouragement and support.
As you will see from the Statement of Accounts our receipts have increased during the year, mainly due to the tremendous increase in the TCCB share-out. But we have had to spend some £34,000 on essential repairs to the ground and a similar sum will be required in 1977 to ensure that Trent Bridge is kept up to Test Match standard in the future.
Cricket expenditure is subject to inflation like everything else and we have had no option but to increase subscriptions. But compared with other professional sports cricket is still a remarkably cheap entertainment.
We are all delighted that Trent Bridge Squash Rackets and Health Club continue to provide important revenue to the Cricket Club and great enjoyment to its members and guests throughout the year.
Once again the Supporters Association has made an outstanding contribution to the cricket club and their magnificent donation this year was £8,000. I would like to thank their Chairman Jack Naake and Secretary Jose Miller, who have both completed a very successful first year in office.
We are indebted to the 200 Club and Ladies Section who have once again provided valuable financial assistance.
We are very dependent upon donations and sponsorship from many companies in this area and acknowledgement is given at the end of this report, together with examples of the form sponsorship might take. Without the help and generosity of so many people we would be struggling to survive and here I would invite members to consider sponsorship to cover even a small item of expenditure at one of our matches, for every little helps. A further fund raising activity is a sponsored walk to be held at Trent Bridge early in the season and here again he smallest support from each member would ensure a magnificent return.
It would be impossible to play all our fixtures at Trent Bridge and we are most grateful to the cricket clubs who make their grounds available for 2nd XI, Under 25 and Club & Ground matches. The kind reception and valuable assistance given is always greatly appreciated.
The County Eleven will be playing Worcestershire at Newark and Glamorgan at Worksop in 1977, both County Championship games and we are grateful to the officials at both grounds for working tremendously hard to ensure games are so enjoyable.
Yet again we have received fair coverage from out local press and radio and we are thankful for the excellent relationship that exists between us.
Finally, I would like to thank my Committee who have worked so hard during the year and the General Secretary, the Office and Sports Complex Staff and the groundstaff for their continued support and loyalty.