Charity trek cricketers inspired by Ian Botham

Mick Houldsworth and Robert Dinsdale planning the route

Mick Houldsworth and Robert Dinsdale planning the route

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Three friends from Clitheroe Cricket Club are following in the footsteps of cricket legend Ian Botham, on a 110-mile fund-raising walk this week.

The five-day trek around all 17 Ribblesdale League grounds was the idea of first team manager Mick Houldsworth.

He will be joined on each leg by skipper Paul Gaskell - while third XI captain Robert Dinsdale will be with them for four days.

Other pals and club members will also link up en route and between them they hope to raise £4,000 for charity and club funds.

Some of the cash will go into club coffers for the season ahead - with the refurbishment of the clubhouse at Chatburn Road nearing completion.

But they will look to put a sizeable sum towards cricket equipment for local primary schools while the club’s charity partner, Dreams and Wishes, could also benefit.

Mick said: “We were chatting about possible fund-raising ideas when I thought of the walk taking in all the grounds.

“I contacted the league committee and they said it’s something that’s never been done before.

“We’ll be sending pictures and updates back via the club’s Twitter and Facebook pages so people can see how we are getting on.

“We’re very grateful to everyone to all the local businesses who have offered to help.”

Those include Whalley Warm and Dry - who have supplied equipment - while Angus Fire International and Lloyds Development Capital have also been generous.

Tuesday saw the start of their marathon trek at Settle - before heading over to Barnoldswick and Earby.

On Wednesday their route took Read, Padiham and Edenfield - while Thursday saw a real challenge involving Brooksbottom and Euxton.

From there, they will take in the Blackburn area - clubs such as Cherry Tree and Salesbury - on the penultimate leg before one last big push.

The plan is on Saturday to go via Great Harwood before hopefully seeing some familiar faces at Whalley’s Station Road home.

Friends and club members will join them for the final few miles - stopping at Ribblesdale Wanderers before pitching up back at Chatburn Road.

The lads are still on the look-out for sponsors and anyone interested in doing so should visit the club’s Facebook page or @Clitheroe_CC on twitter.

l The Clubhouse Re-opening night will take place on Saturday, starting at 7pm, with live music provided by David Jaggs. Tickets are £8 for adults and £4 for children in advance from www.picatic.com/cccreopening.