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  • Accreditation Document: Grounds, Facilities & Youth
  • Appendix A: Youth Accreditation Criteria
  • Appendix B: Grounds & Facilities Criteria
  • Clubmark & Gradings

Southern Premier Cricket League Accreditation Scheme for Grounds, Facilities and Youth Development

1. Introduction

This short booklet provides a guide to the background, purpose, operation, and governance of the Southern Premier Cricket League (SPCL) Accreditation Scheme for Grounds and Youth Development. It brings together in a single document, information which has previously been available through a range of sources such as the League Handbook, AGM Reports, and Captains meetings. The SPCL Committee will update the booklet to incorporate future changes to the Scheme.

2. Brief History

The notion of accreditation is not new in League Cricket in Hampshire. The former Southern Cricket League introduced an accreditation scheme in the early 1990s to address the generally poor quality of pitches, and to promote the development of coaching and Youth Cricket. The Hampshire Cricket League introduced a Grounds assessment scheme shortly afterwards.

At the inception of the Southern Premier League, accreditation was strengthened as part of the drive to further improve standards at the top of the Club 'Pyramid' in line with the vision of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for the recreational game. All member clubs signed up to the accreditation approach as a condition of membership and by adopting the Club Charter.

3. Purpose of the scheme

The purpose of the Accreditation Scheme is to promote continuous improvement, whilst ensuring that minimum standards continue to be satisfied. Participation in the Scheme is a condition of membership of the SPCL, and levels of accreditation are built into the eligibility criteria for entry to each of the four Divisions.

4. Registering for participation in the Scheme

Any Club can register for participation in the Scheme by application to the SPCL Secretary. However given the practical constraints on resources available to run the Scheme, participation is effectively restricted to Hampshire Cricket League Clubs which have ambitions of entry to SPCL. Such Clubs are advised normally to allow themselves two seasons following registration prior to possible entry so that any necessary improvements, identified during assessment, may be implemented.

5. Standards

The Accreditation Standards are set out in this Document and Appendix 'A' and Appendix 'B'. The Standards are set by the SPCL. The Standards for pitches and outfields are supported by performance criteria and a rating scale which is applied at the end of each match by the Umpires and the visiting Captain.

6. Performance

6.1 Grounds

The minimum scores, averaged over a number of seasons, are -


  • Pitch: 29.00
  • Outfield: 7.50
  • Total: 36.50


  • Pitch: 26.00
  • Outfield: 7.00
  • Total: 33.00


  • Pitch: 23.00
  • Outfield: 6.50
  • Total: 29.50

6.2 Facilities

Facilities are checked against Appendix 'B' on physical evidence by Umpires and Grounds Assessors on the basis of 'present/not present' and reported accordingly.

6.3 Youth Development

Gradings are checked against Appendix 'A' by the HCB Cricket Development Manager, using Club Mark Evidence Files and District records independently of the League Management Committee, (see 7.3).

7. Assessment Procedures

7.1 Grounds

Grading of grounds is determined by the following:

  • umpires and captains pitch and ground markings
  • umpires and captains comments
  • ground assessors reports, where available

In particular, three questions are addressed within each tier of Accreditation (i.e. Gold; Silver & Bronze): Note - Clubs may be given interim Grading levels namely, Silver with Gold potential or Bronze with Silver potential for Grounds & Facility grading only.

  • is the standard met consistently over the season?
  • is there the capability and capacity in groundsmanship to maintain the standard?
  • what is the trend over several seasons?

Accreditation is only given when consistency has been demonstrated. Once given, grading is not normally lowered or withdrawn on the basis of a single season of lesser standard. It follows that grading is not normally improved or restored until consistency is proved over two or more seasons. However, exceptions may occur based on better or worse performances as may arise.

A system of warnings from the League Committee is instigated to enable Clubs to remedy deficiencies, based on recommendations from the Chairman of the SPCL Accreditation sub - committee and HCB Pitch Advisor and finally approved by the SPCL Management Committee.


Any new club wishing to enter the SPCL must give proof of a minimum of 15 years tenure of their Club and Ground.

7.2 Clubmark Accreditation

Clubs playing in all divisions of the SPCL must have obtained Clubmark Accreditation. This requires clubs to complete an annual health check and be reaccredited every 3 years.

7.3 Youth Development

At the end of each season the HCB Development Team, will, via ClubMark Evidence Files and District records assess and confirm, in accordance with Appendix 'A', the following:

  • the number of Colts games played at each age group, using information from District Associations records and league tables.
  • the number of ECB Qualified Coaches who are actively working with Colts in the club and have a current DBS clearance through ECB, using information obtained through the ClubMark process.

8. Governance

The Accreditation Standards are set by the SPCL, and particularly for the Gold Standard are heavily influenced by the Standards set for Premier League Clubs by the ECB.

Monitoring of the Grounds and Facilities Standards is managed by the Southern Premier Cricket League Management Committee. The Youth Development Assessment aspects of the Scheme are operated by the Hampshire Cricket Board on behalf of SPCL. Any dispute over matters of fact are open to review by the Chairman of the Hampshire Cricket Board upon request by the club concerned.

Further information and practical support, in using the Accreditation Scheme to improve Club performance, including free grounds advisory visits, is available from:

  • the Secretary of the SPCL
  • the Secretary of the HCB
  • the Grounds Adviser of the HCB
  • the Cricket Development Manager of the HCB
  • the Chairman of the SPCL Accreditation sub-committee

Applies 2019

Appendix A - Youth Accreditation Criteria


Clubs playing in all divisions must have obtained ClubMark accreditation. This requires clubs to complete an annual health check and be reaccredited every 3 years.

Number of games played per age group

In addition to achieving and maintaining ClubMark, clubs must provide regular competitive opportunities for junior players:

  • Gold: must provide a minimum of 8 matches in 3 of the following age groups - U9, U11, U13 and U15
  • Silver: must provide a minimum of 8 matches in 2 of the following age groups - U9, U11, U13 and U15
  • Bronze: must provide a minimum of 6 matches in 2 of the following age groups - U9, U11, U13 and U15

Clarification and Supplementary Notes

  1. District league tables will be used to collate the number of games played in the first instance. If clubs do not fulfil the required number of fixtures for their current grading, the number of cup/friendly games played will be requested (score sheets may be requested) from the club.
  2. A match that starts but is abandoned counts as a game played.

Appendix B - Grounds Accreditation Criteria

Clubs aspiring to be promoted must meet the criteria of the higher grade by 31 August prior to promotion. The criteria must also be met by 31 August in subsequent years. Clubs not meeting the criteria for their current Division by 31 August will be at risk of relegation.

NOTE: Any new club wishing to enter the SPCL must give proof of a minimum of 15 years tenure of their Club and Ground.


  • G = Gold
  • S = Silver
  • B = Bronze
  • M = Mandatory
  • O = Optional (but desirable)

Ground, Pitch & Outfield

Specification for preparation of the pitch must be under the club's controlMMM
Decisions on the fitness of the ground for play, prior to the arrival of the match umpires, must be under the club's controlMMM
The ground must be secured against incursion of free roaming livestock.MMM
Grass Pitch must be suitable for 120 oversMMM
Pitch must not have been artificially watered within 48 hours before a matchMMO
Square should be cut within 2 days before a matchMMM
A light and heavy roller (minimum 1 ton) must be available for use during the matchMMO
Creases shall be remarked between innings and lunch and tea intervals where applicableMMM
Covers must be available to protect an area of at least 80 feet by 12 feet during an prior to matchMMO
The outfield must be closely mown with no noticeable grass cuttings and weedsMMM
The outfield must have no holes, ruts or any other hazardous obstructionsMMM
The boundary must be no less than 50 yards and no more than 90 yards from the nearer middle stump on the match pitch. For clarification; a minimum of five individual match pitches, on a single cricket square with this measurement, must be available for use throughout the season.MOO
The boundary to be marked clearly with a rope or white line or equivalent with markers approximately 20 yards apart placed immediately on the outer edge of the boundary line.MMM
When applicable, fielding circles will be indicated as per the playing regulations. Discs can be obtained from the LeagueMMM
Fit for purpose Double Sightscreens or approved equivalent must be provided at both ends, in good condition and situated outside the boundaryMMM
A ground not enclosed by security fencing, shall be adequately roped off to protect the square at times when not in useMMM
The ground surrounds should be well maintained and suitable measures taken to ensure lost balls do not delay playMMO


Two artificial or grass nets must be available prior to the game on match daysMMO
An artificial or grass net must be available prior to the game on match daysMMM

Off Field

A large working clock must be sited so that it can be seen from the playing areaMMM
A bell, to allow umpires to signal the start and resumption of play must be providedMMO
Scorebox: An enclosed, separate and private area that provides clear, unimpeded visibility of the entire playing area for both Official scorers, in dry and ideally warm conditions; with access to approved electrical power points; and which enables adequate control of the scoreboard and signalling to the on-field Umpires.MOO
A scorebox or sheltered area must be provided for official scorers with numbers showing, at least, Total, Wickets, Overs & First Innings TotalMMM
Separate and secure changing rooms must be provided for visiting teamsMMM
Where new Build changing rooms must be to SPL recommended minimum size with suitable seating and area for equipmentMOO
Changing rooms must have a mirror and at least one hook per player for clothesMOO
Separate and secure accommodation must be provided for umpires of a similar standard to playersMMO
Separate and secure accommodation must be provided for umpiresMMM
Adequate clean and hygienic showers must be available and convenient for private access by players and umpiresMMO
Adequate clean and hygienic showers must be available for the use of players and umpiresMMM
A clean and Hygienic Kitchen shall be provided and meet all relevant health & safety requirements.MMO
Where a kitchen exists it shall meet all legal health and safety requirementsMMM
Clean and hygienic male and female toilets must be available and meet all legal requirementsMMM
Toilet access for spectators must be consistent with the security and private requirements of players and umpiresMMM
All toilet facilities should take into account the needs of people with disabilitiesMOO
A well-stocked First Aid Box must be easily accessible at all times for treatment of minor injuriesMMM
A person qualified in First Aid should be available whenever possibleOOO
Team sheets should be available for spectators or on display in a convenient locationMOO
Telephone facilities must be available and in working orderMMM

Clubmark & Gradings


  • G = Gold
  • SG = Gold/Silver
  • S = Silver
  • BS = Bronze/Silver
  • B = Bronze
  • * = Promoted the previous season
  • ** = Relegated the previous season
Premier Division
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
Alton G G G 2021
Bashley (Rydal) G G G 2019
Basingstoke & North Hants G G G 2019
Bournemouth Sports (2nd Grd) * SG G SG 2021
Burridge G G G 2021
Havant G G G 2021
HCCC Academy G G G N/A
Lymington G G G 2020
South Wilts G G G 2020
St. Cross Symondians G G G 2021
Division One
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
Andover G G G 2020
Calmore Sports S G S 2020
Hook & Newnham Basics S G S 2021
New Milton ** SG G SG 2019
OT's & Romsey SG G SG 2020
Portsmouth S G S 2019
Rowledge * BS G BS 2020
Sarisbury Athletic SG G SG 2019
Sparsholt * BS G BS 2021
Ventnor (Steephill) BS G BS 2020
Division Two
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
Basingstoke & North Hants II G G G 2019
Fair Oak * BS G BS 2021
Hartley Wintney ** S G S 2020
Langley Manor BS G BS 2021
Liphook & Ripsley ** S G S 2019
Paultons SG S S 2020
South Wilts II * G G G 2020
St. Cross Symondians II G G G 2021
Totton & Eling G G G 2019
Waterlooville B S B 2021
Division Three
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
Bashley (Rydal) II G G G 2019
Fareham & Crofton * B G B 2019
Fawley S G S 2020
Hambledon BS G BS 2020
Hythe & Dibden * B G B 2019
Lymington II G G G 2019
Portsmouth & Southsea B G B 2020
Purbrook BS G BS 2021
Tichborne Park ** S S S 2021
Trojans ** S G S 2019
Relegated Clubs
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
Gosport Borough BS G BS 2020
Havant II G G G 2021
Other Grounds in SPCL
Club Ground Youth Overall Renewal
St. Cross Symondians (2nd ground) B - - -