A SPORTS club that was on the brink of closure a few years ago has received a sponsorship boost that seeks to further develop it.

Crook Cricket Club was at the point of closure – but after David Nevins was appointed chairman and then president, it’s fortunes turned for the better.

He said: “We had a five year plan to turn things around and the club is now a real hub for the community, with our new facilities being used by a range of classes and groups,”

The clubhouse on Dawson Street in Crook, has been renovated, refurbished and extended.

The club has now signed a new sponsorship deal with South Tyneside based, UK Asbestos specialists Ltd – known as UKasl – one of the leading providers of asbestos awareness training.

The sponsorship will help enable the club to improve its practice facilities and expand its coaching provisions.

Les Cooper, owner and managing director of UKasl said: “I moved into the Crook area not too long ago and was looking for somewhere to practice archery, a new hobby I have taken up.

“Through social media, someone mentioned Crook Cricket Club and I came along and met David. I was bowled over by what he’s done here and his enthusiasm

“I was only too happy to sponsor the club and I’m looking forward to the club getting bigger and bigger.”

Mr Nevins is pleased with the progress the club has made during his time as club president and hopes to introduce a woman’s team, after a girls team was started last season, with the help of the sponsorship.

He added: “We were promoted into North East Premier League Division last season and the support that Les and others are bringing to the club will help us stay in that division.

“The sponsorship from UKasl will enable us to upgrade our nets and at the same time means we can give more support to Andrew Pratt, the former Durham cricketer who is now first team captain and head coach.

“We’re really grateful for Les’s help and we are now looking at the possibility that archery could be another activity that we could offer the community to use at the club. If the right conditions can be satisfied this may lead on to classes being developed and delivered here."