Former Addiscombe cricketer honoured at Lord's
SURREY Outstanding Service to Cricket Award winner Chris Whitehouse has been honoured on a bigger stage at the NatWest National OSCAs at Lord's.
Chris Whitehouse, who was named as the Surrey winner in the 'Leagues and Boards' category, carried his victory to a national level and was presented with the prize at a Long Room lunch attended by England stars James Anderson and Matthew Prior as well as former captains Claire Taylor and Michael Vaughan.
The nomination for Chris Whitehouse's Surrey award was mightly impressive.
Whitehouse chaired the formation of the North East and Central Surrey Colts League in 1984 and over 17 years expanded participation of colts from U8 to U16 in league competition, an estimated 2,000 players in 150 teams from 23 clubs.
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In 1995 he introduced an annual handbook until 2010 when a website was developed.
He also started the NEC Prize Awards at an annual dinner that he organised with the participation of up to 500 colts and parents until retiring in 2008.
Since 2001, Whitehouse has introduced annual cricket festivals with competitions for U8 through to U14 age groups as well as starting representative matches with other leagues in Surrey, Kent, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
A former top level Addiscombe and Minor Counties player, Whitehouse is a qualified proactive coaching skills have been hugely valued by Addiscombe Colts through the 80's and 90's and subsequently his committee colleagues and the participant clubs.
Paul Taylor, Director of Cricket Development at Surrey CCC added: "Chris [Whitehouse] epitomises the effort and dedication of cricket volunteers across Surrey and fully deserves his honour.
"The NatWest Outstanding Service to Cricket Awards are a fantastic opportunity to reward those work so often goes unseen and to have volunteers from Surrey recognised on a national level is another boost to the club game in our county."
Dominic Warne, Senior Marketing Manager at NatWest, said: "We're proud to once again be sponsoring the OSCAs. It's so important to recognise and celebrate the efforts of volunteers at the end of another fantastic season of cricket, something this event does so uniquely.
"We know that many grassroots clubs would struggle to function without the time, hard work and dedication of these volunteers which is one of the reasons why we launched the NatWest Cricket Club this summer.
"We're helping to find the next generation of volunteers and reward those who play an active role in supporting the grassroots of the game."
Former England captain Mike Gatting, now in a senior role at the ECB, concluded: "Volunteers play a vital role in ensuring that our grass-roots game can continue to flourish and these awards are a fantastic way of recognising their contribution.
"It's thanks to their tireless work and self sacrifice that pitches get prepared, pavilions maintained and cricket teas made.
"Congratulations to all the winners – you are the unsung heroes of our game and your awards are richly deserve