DENTON West are lighting up the new Greater Manchester Cricket League season on and off the field in 2021.
West’s first team topped Premier League 2 at the time of going to press with five wins from their opening six games.
And thanks to club stalwart Ian McAllister’s work, every performance at Windsor Park this season has been an illuminating one.
Due to Ian’s handwork, Wests are proud owners of an impressive new electric scoreboard, all run by solar power.
Finding himself with time on his hands during lockdown the 60-year-old built his colourful display from scratch, saving the club thousands of pounds in the process.
Denton-raised Ian, also one of a number of volunteer groundsmen, is delighted to be putting something back to a club where he has been a member for nearly half a century.
“Our old scoreboard had started to look a bit tatty and unfortunately I was made redundant about two years ago,” he said.
“Wondering what I could do to keep busy I came across a website-buildyourownscoreboard-and approached the club to see if they would be interested.
“I am a piping engineer by trade so I had some technical ability. I started to buy bits and pieces for it; the wire, little microchips, circuit boards. I had a router lying around at home.
“Actually, building it wasn’t too bad, the main problem was the software because that’s not my speciality.
“But I went on the website forum and got in touch with the main admin guy and he stepped me through it all.
“Other clubs might spend thousands on a scoreboard; you could be looking at somewhere upto £15,000.
“Ours is a budget version and it cost me about £600-£700 plus my time. But I think it has been well received though we did have a glitch at first.
“I am not sure if it was because I had to bring it from home but it didn’t switch on. So, we had to wait until the next second team game before it was working properly.
“And I have got to thank my wife Gillian because it was behind the settee for about six months.”
Ian, who now lives in Newton, joined the club as a junior around 1974, going on to play for the first team after a spell at Henry Simons CC.
He was also a second team regular until he was 55 and ran the third team to help bring through a new crop of juniors.
Son John has followed in his footsteps while his other son Chris plays club cricket in Scotland.
“It’s good to be able to put something back. When I played plenty of other people prepared wickets and did the ground.
“It is a family club and hopefully we can get enjoyment from the scoreboard.”