Bill Holmes is the new chair of the Gordon Rigg Bradford League. His appointment was confirmed at the January meeting of the Management Board.
He fills the void created by the resignation of Mark Heald in November and has taken up his post with immediate effect.
Holmes, 65, joined the Management Board in 2019 and steps up from his previous roles as Marketing Officer and Discipline Officer.
“I am really honoured to have been elected as chair of what I view as the county’s leading league not only in terms of its competitiveness, profile and heritage but also the players participating in it. I see my role as maintaining and then enhancing this status allowing the players, umpires and all our league community to enjoy and be proud of their association with the league,” he said.
“There are however many challenges facing us with the umpiring situation being top of the list. I will be working with interested parties to address all the important issues in front of us given the key contribution our umpires make to the success of the league.” observed Holmes
“There is a lot of good work going on across the league and it is important that achievement is always recognised and celebrated. I want to utilise the undoubted expertise within the Management Board and around our clubs for the benefit of the league, “added Holmes
“I have visited all the clubs in the league in recent seasons and I see engaging with clubs as an important part of my role. Face to face meetings are so important and will help me to understand both the ambitions and the concerns of all those competing in our league.
“The last three years have been immensely challenging although I remain confident that we are steering a safe passage to calmer waters ahead.” concluded Holmes
Holmes has had a connection with the league for more than 40 years. As a player he was a dogged opening batsman who scored 12,618 runs during a Bradford League career which saw him play for Farsley, Bingley, Bradford & Bingley, Yeadon and Yorkshire Bank. He also had one season in the Central Yorkshire League with Mirfield.
He featured in three Bradford League championship wins with Bingley in 1982 and Bradford & Bingley in 1990 and 1992. He was a Priestley Cup winning captain with Bingley in 1987 and helped Bradford & Bingley win the Black Sheep Yorkshire Champions Trophy in 1991 and 1992.
Since joining the board, his achievements include securing the deal with title sponsors Gordon Rigg Home and Leisure which is now about to enter its fourth year, and in 2022 leading, the introduction of the ECB General Conduct Regulations.
League president David Young, who acted as interim chair after Heald’s resignation, said: “I am delighted to hand over the reins to Bill Holmes. I am confident he will provide strong and decisive leadership.
“Bill has a deep love for the league which is traced back to his playing days and I am sure everybody in the league will join me in wishing him well in his new role.
“I have told Bill that I will be available to offer help and advice should he need it. The job of chair can be tough, but I am sure Bill will deal with that in his own measured way.”
League photographer Ray Spencer called in at Lightcliffe this week to catch a glimpse of the...