Thursday 18th October 2018
A specially commissioned painting has gone on display at the home of the RAF Cricket Association, Vine Lane Cricket Ground, North London.
Cricketing friends at the Forward Drive Cricket Academy, Birmingham, commissioned a special painting from local artist John West, of Selly Park, to present to the Royal Air Force Cricket Association to celebrate the Royal Air Force 100th anniversary.
Forward Drive Academy Director, Mr Farukh Kazi of Selly Oak, surprised Royal Air Force Cricket Association players and officials by presenting the framed original painting during a cricket tour to the midlands earlier this year. There to help him make the presentation was the artist himself.
RAF Cricket Association Vice Chairman, Wing Commander Simon Firth accepted the painting saying:
“We are honoured to receive this thoughtful gift on the occasion of our 100th anniversary,” and added:
“The key themes of our ‘RAF100’ year are to Celebrate, Commemorate and Inspire. This painting will help us to commemorate all those who have served and played, celebrate our thriving cricketing community and inspire the next generation. We sincerely hope the time we spent with the young players here at the Academy, and throughout our tour, will inspire them to excel in all they do and form strong friendships through cricket.”
During a recent fixture, Royal Air Force Cricket Association members formally placed the artwork on display in the fully refurbished Pavilion at Vine Lane Cricket Ground.
Royal Air Force Cricket Association Chairman, Group Captain Paul Cole, and Senior XI player Sergeant Keiran Pearce received the painting in the Pavilion before it was hung in the Committee Room.
Group Captain Paul Cole, summed up the occasion, saying:
“We are so grateful to John for his work. His painting will be a continuing reminder of our friendship with Farukh, his team at the Forward Drive Academy and cricketers across The Midlands.”
The RAF Cricket Association welcomes regular or reservist serving RAF men and women. Vine Lane Cricket Ground is our Home and we are grateful to the RAF Central Fund for their support.
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Image: Credit Sqn Ldr Emma Watkins RAF