This short booklet provides a guide to the background, purpose, operation, and governance of the Southern Premier Cricket League (SPCL) Accreditation Scheme for Grounds and Youth Development. It brings together in a single document, information which has previously been available through a range of sources such as the League Handbook, AGM Reports, and Captains meetings. The SPCL Committee will update the booklet to incorporate future changes to the Scheme.
The notion of accreditation is not new in League Cricket in Hampshire. The former Southern Cricket League introduced an accreditation scheme in the early 1990s to address the generally poor quality of pitches, and to promote the development of coaching and Youth Cricket. The Hampshire Cricket League introduced a Grounds assessment scheme shortly afterwards.
At the inception of the Southern Premier League, accreditation was strengthened as part of the drive to further improve standards at the top of the Club 'Pyramid' in line with the vision of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for the recreational game. All member clubs signed up to the accreditation approach as a condition of membership and by adopting the Club Charter.
The purpose of the Accreditation Scheme is to promote continuous improvement, whilst ensuring that minimum standards continue to be satisfied. Participation in the Scheme is a condition of membership of the SPCL, and levels of accreditation are built into the eligibility criteria for entry to each of the four Divisions.
Any Club can register for participation in the Scheme by application to the SPCL Secretary. However given the practical constraints on resources available to run the Scheme, participation is effectively restricted to Hampshire Cricket League Clubs which have ambitions of entry to SPCL. Such Clubs are advised normally to allow themselves two seasons following registration prior to possible entry so that any necessary improvements, identified during assessment, may be implemented.
The Accreditation Standards are set out in this Document and Appendix 'A' and Appendix 'B'. The Standards are set by the SPCL. The Standards for pitches and outfields are supported by performance criteria and a rating scale which is applied at the end of each match by the Umpires and the visiting Captain.
The minimum scores, averaged over a number of seasons, are -
Facilities are checked against Appendix 'B' on physical evidence by Umpires and Grounds Assessors on the basis of 'present/not present' and reported accordingly.
6.3 Youth Development
Gradings are checked against Appendix 'A' by the HCB Cricket Development Manager, using Club Mark Evidence Files and District records independently of the League Management Committee, (see 7.3).
Grading of grounds is determined by the following:
In particular, three questions are addressed within each tier of Accreditation (i.e. Gold; Silver & Bronze): Note - Clubs may be given interim Grading levels namely, Silver with Gold potential or Bronze with Silver potential for Grounds & Facility grading only.
Accreditation is only given when consistency has been demonstrated. Once given, grading is not normally lowered or withdrawn on the basis of a single season of lesser standard. It follows that grading is not normally improved or restored until consistency is proved over two or more seasons. However, exceptions may occur based on better or worse performances as may arise.
A system of warnings from the League Committee is instigated to enable Clubs to remedy deficiencies, based on recommendations from the Chairman of the SPCL Accreditation sub - committee and HCB Pitch Advisor and finally approved by the SPCL Management Committee.
Any new club wishing to enter the SPCL must give proof of a minimum of 15 years tenure of their Club and Ground.
7.2 Clubmark Accreditation
Clubs playing in all divisions of the SPCL must have obtained Clubmark Accreditation. This requires clubs to complete an annual health check and be reaccredited every 3 years.
7.3 Youth Development
At the end of each season the HCB Development Team, will, via ClubMark Evidence Files and District records assess and confirm, in accordance with Appendix 'A', the following:
The Accreditation Standards are set by the SPCL, and particularly for the Gold Standard are heavily influenced by the Standards set for Premier League Clubs by the ECB.
Monitoring of the Grounds and Facilities Standards is managed by the Southern Premier Cricket League Management Committee. The Youth Development Assessment aspects of the Scheme are operated by the Hampshire Cricket Board on behalf of SPCL. Any dispute over matters of fact are open to review by the Chairman of the Hampshire Cricket Board upon request by the club concerned.
Further information and practical support, in using the Accreditation Scheme to improve Club performance, including free grounds advisory visits, is available from:
Clubs playing in all divisions must have obtained ClubMark accreditation. This requires clubs to complete an annual health check and be reaccredited every 3 years.
In addition to achieving and maintaining ClubMark, clubs must provide regular competitive opportunities for junior players:
Clubs aspiring to be promoted must meet the criteria of the higher grade by 31 August prior to promotion. The criteria must also be met by 31 August in subsequent years. Clubs not meeting the criteria for their current Division by 31 August will be at risk of relegation.
NOTE: Any new club wishing to enter the SPCL must give proof of a minimum of 15 years tenure of their Club and Ground.
|Specification for preparation of the pitch must be under the club's control||M||M||M|
|Decisions on the fitness of the ground for play, prior to the arrival of the match umpires, must be under the club's control||M||M||M|
|The ground must be secured against incursion of free roaming livestock.||M||M||M|
|Grass Pitch must be suitable for 120 overs||M||M||M|
|Pitch must not have been artificially watered within 48 hours before a match||M||M||O|
|Square should be cut within 2 days before a match||M||M||M|
|A light and heavy roller (minimum 1 ton) must be available for use during the match||M||M||O|
|Creases shall be remarked between innings and lunch and tea intervals where applicable||M||M||M|
|Covers must be available to protect an area of at least 80 feet by 12 feet during an prior to match||M||M||O|
|The outfield must be closely mown with no noticeable grass cuttings and weeds||M||M||M|
|The outfield must have no holes, ruts or any other hazardous obstructions||M||M||M|
|The boundary must be no less than 50 yards and no more than 90 yards from the nearer middle stump on the match pitch. For clarification; a minimum of five individual match pitches, on a single cricket square with this measurement, must be available for use throughout the season.||M||O||O|
|The boundary to be marked clearly with a rope or white line or equivalent with markers approximately 20 yards apart placed immediately on the outer edge of the boundary line.||M||M||M|
|When applicable, fielding circles will be indicated as per the playing regulations. Discs can be obtained from the League||M||M||M|
|Fit for purpose Double Sightscreens or approved equivalent must be provided at both ends, in good condition and situated outside the boundary||M||M||M|
|A ground not enclosed by security fencing, shall be adequately roped off to protect the square at times when not in use||M||M||M|
|The ground surrounds should be well maintained and suitable measures taken to ensure lost balls do not delay play||M||M||O|
|Two artificial or grass nets must be available prior to the game on match days||M||M||O|
|An artificial or grass net must be available prior to the game on match days||M||M||M|
|A large working clock must be sited so that it can be seen from the playing area||M||M||M|
|A bell, to allow umpires to signal the start and resumption of play must be provided||M||M||O|
|Scorebox: An enclosed, separate and private area that provides clear, unimpeded visibility of the entire playing area for both Official scorers, in dry and ideally warm conditions; with access to approved electrical power points; and which enables adequate control of the scoreboard and signalling to the on-field Umpires.||M||O||O|
|A scorebox or sheltered area must be provided for official scorers with numbers showing, at least, Total, Wickets, Overs & First Innings Total||M||M||M|
|Separate and secure changing rooms must be provided for visiting teams||M||M||M|
|Where new Build changing rooms must be to SPL recommended minimum size with suitable seating and area for equipment||M||O||O|
|Changing rooms must have a mirror and at least one hook per player for clothes||M||O||O|
|Separate and secure accommodation must be provided for umpires of a similar standard to players||M||M||O|
|Separate and secure accommodation must be provided for umpires||M||M||M|
|Adequate clean and hygienic showers must be available and convenient for private access by players and umpires||M||M||O|
|Adequate clean and hygienic showers must be available for the use of players and umpires||M||M||M|
|A clean and Hygienic Kitchen shall be provided and meet all relevant health & safety requirements.||M||M||O|
|Where a kitchen exists it shall meet all legal health and safety requirements||M||M||M|
|Clean and hygienic male and female toilets must be available and meet all legal requirements||M||M||M|
|Toilet access for spectators must be consistent with the security and private requirements of players and umpires||M||M||M|
|All toilet facilities should take into account the needs of people with disabilities||M||O||O|
|A well-stocked First Aid Box must be easily accessible at all times for treatment of minor injuries||M||M||M|
|A person qualified in First Aid should be available whenever possible||O||O||O|
|Team sheets should be available for spectators or on display in a convenient location||M||O||O|
|Telephone facilities must be available and in working order||M||M||M|
|Basingstoke & North Hants||G||G||G||2019|
|Bournemouth Sports (2nd Grd) *||SG||G||SG||2021|
|St. Cross Symondians||G||G||G||2021|
|Hook & Newnham Basics||S||G||S||2021|
|New Milton **||SG||G||SG||2019|
|OT's & Romsey||SG||G||SG||2020|
|Basingstoke & North Hants II||G||G||G||2019|
|Fair Oak *||BS||G||BS||2021|
|Hartley Wintney **||S||G||S||2020|
|Liphook & Ripsley **||S||G||S||2019|
|South Wilts II *||G||G||G||2020|
|St. Cross Symondians II||G||G||G||2021|
|Totton & Eling||G||G||G||2019|
|Bashley (Rydal) II||G||G||G||2019|
|Fareham & Crofton *||B||G||B||2019|
|Hythe & Dibden *||B||G||B||2019|
|Portsmouth & Southsea||B||G||B||2020|
|Tichborne Park **||S||S||S||2021|
|Other Grounds in SPCL|
|St. Cross Symondians (2nd ground)||B||-||-||-|