Although the last year has been difficult for sports clubs in the region, one cricket club is beginning to expand its horizons going into the new cricket season.

Riding Mill, who usually play in the Northumberland and Tyneside against sides a lot larger in size, have entered a new team into the West Tyne League for the 2021 season and are hoping to also add further teams across more divisions in the future.

Building work at the ground is also expected to continue as the club keeps growing, although the Covid pandemic has forced them to adapt over the last year.

“As you can see, we’ve been fortunate enough to begin building work on the changing rooms and facilities at our ground,” said club treasurer Steve Kent.

“Hopefully this will help us appeal to more players, new teams and new opportunities in the future.

“The biggest thing about the projects we’ve completed and currently have ongoing is that it’s been funded by ourselves and the fundraising we do on a regular basis.

“We’re a real community club; everything you do from buying a drink on matchday to donating via crowdfunding goes directly to the club and really helps us.

“Everything we’ve done building wise - for example new training facilities and a new pavilion - has been down to the money we’ve raised.

However despite the ongoing work, the last year has hit Riding Mill - as like other clubs around the region - badly when it comes to matchday revenue and Steve believes it’s the efforts of everyone involved that has saved the club from potential danger.

“If I’m honest, I think if the pandemic had hit maybe three years ago, I couldn’t see the club being able to survive what’s happened.

“We’ve worked really hard to get everything to where it is today and it’s been great to see the transformation.

“The location of where we were was in a bad way and I think we would have struggled to keep going.”

To try and recoup some of the funds lost last summer due to the pandemic, the club have created a Covid recovery funding page for anyone to donate whatever they can. This can be accessed at