A UNIQUE partnership has been formed between cricket chiefs and a Burton engineering firm to honour the life of a custodian of the game who passed away.
Briggs of Burton, based in Derby Street, has agreed a five-year partnership with Derbyshire County Cricket Club to become the official pre-season tour sponsors in memory of the late Keith Poynton, father of Derbyshire wicket-keeper Tom.
Mr Poynton, whose 40-year career with Briggs of Burton saw him rise from apprentice to director, was passionate about cricket in Derbyshire and attended the county’s pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi in March before he passed away in a tragic accident in Caldwell Road, near Drakelow, in April.
The partnership will see the launch of the Keith Poynton Spirit of Cricket Derbyshire Award to be presented each year at the player of the year awards evening in memory of the 57-year-old, from Rosliston.
A recent memorial service held in his honour and a ‘Snazzy Socks’ Sunday, which took place on the opening day of home cricket this season, raised more than £3,000 for a game-ready machine to assist in player rehabilitation.
Cricket Derbyshire ‘Snazzy Socks’ will soon be stocked in the club Shop with money raised going to the Cricket Derbyshire Foundation.
Chief executive Simon Storey said: “Cricket in Derbyshire was a passion for Keith and Briggs of Burton wanted to do their bit to help the local county cricket club in his memory.
“The family were so proud to see the hundreds of snazzy socks on display on that first Sunday of the season.
“It was great to see so many supporters pay their respects in such a positive way.”
Briggs of Burton director Gareth Cure said: “Keith was every inch a proud Derbyshire man and the whole family are staunch supporters of the club.
“We think he would be proud to see Briggs associated with the club in this way.
“He would have been right at the front of the queue for a pair of the new socks too.”
The partnership also secures future pre-season tours which will allow the squad to partake in special training.