SEN Festival shines in the summer sun

Bovey Tracey Cricket Club (Pictured Below) was yet again the host for the annual Disability Cricket festival amongst nine SEN Schools from around the county. The competition itself was split into two sections with South Dartmoor Community College, Newton Abbott College, Ratcliffe School, Combe Pafford, Barley Lane and Southbrook all competing for the Charles Hackett Trophy. The previous winners have been former Devon CCC captain Chris Bradleys’ school Ratcliffe who have had their name on the trophy for the past two years sharing the trophy in 2014 with Barley Lane School.  A second competition was running alongside the trophy competition with Bidwell Brook, Oaklands, and Mayfield School all of which have prowesss on the Table Cricket circuit in the past, however the day was a great opportunity for them to get out on the field playing some matches and cricket challenges. 


With temperatures soaring in the sun drenched premier league club ground games commenced promptly at 10.30. The standard of batting and bowling being particularly high in comparison to previous years within the trophy competition, this was going to mean the competition was very evenly matched. With the early running being made by Ratcliffe, Combe Pafford, and South Dartmoor all of whom won there first round of matches. Two games before lunch followed by two more after seemed to be a format which worked well, and helped the young cricketers rehydrate in the exhausting mid day sunshine. After lunch Combe Pafford seemed to be marching ahead, however after beating Barley Lane School in the first round of matches of the day, it came down to those two sides once again in the Grand Final for the trophy. This time however the tables turned and Barley Lane School learnt lessons from earlier in the day bowling very straight and holding onto numerous catches throughout the Combe Pafford innings. This meant that Barley Lane by batting sensibly would come away with their name on the cup. This indeed was the case and it was great to see how a side can develop over the course of the day.


It wasn’t just a day for the disability schools to learn and play cricket but a great opportunity for 14 Cricket Activators from Newton Abbott College to officiate and score all the matches within the trophy competition. The Activators showed great communication skills and also showcase their skills of working with people. They were a credit to themselves and Newton Abbot College, so great thanks goes out to them. (Pictured Right)


Teachers, assistants, and other education specialists all got their hands dirty and helped with the running of the day, in particular in the cricket challenges where the staff all got involved to add to the enjoyment of the day. The day wouldn’t have happened without one very special thank you to Fran Fox the Ratcliffe School PE Teacher and SEN Sports coordinator for arranging the day itself, a truly fantastic amount of work was put in by Fran to make the day happen.


DCL Chairman Stuart Munday (Pictured Left) who was in attendance on behalf of the David Shepherd Cricket Trust conducted closing ceremony and prize giving.  The trust that had kindly supported the day with Kwik Cricket sets for each of the schools that attended. Hopefully cricket can start to be a regular feature in the school day throughout the summer term with the support of this equipment going to them.







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