STEVE Batey has taken over as chairman of Uplyme and Lyme Regis Cricket Club.

Former chairman Ian Thomas handed over the reins at a recent Annual General Meeting.

New chairman Steve is looking forward to the new challenge. He told the AGM: “I’m excited and happy to be taking over my new role as chair of Uplyme & Lyme Regis CC. With past family generations involved and 20 years at the club personally, I will be continuing the positive direction previous chair Ian Thomas has led in the last three years. Ian and I will be working closely together to complete remaining work to securing our club tenure and the future of our beloved pavilion."

"My initial priorities are to further improve and update club facilities for current members and rejuvenate our valued local club by attracting new members and further encouraging young people to play cricket. I’ll be working closely with my dedicated and enthusiastic committee members to engage with local community groups, including Woodroffe school and inspire new members, players and supporters to join us in ‘getting involved’ with our historic club.”

Ian advised committee colleagues at the start of the season that this was to be his last year as chairman. He leaves the post having led the club to a strong sustainable position in his three years in charge.

Derek Wellman, on behalf of the club, thanked Ian for his hard work during this period, especially that with ground freeholder Fields In Trust and KG5 Management Trustees toward securing tenure of the club's pavilion.

Ian added: “It’s been a challenging few seasons for our club. Thanks to the efforts of the club committee, supported by communities in both Uplyme and Lyme Regis, the club is now under no immediate financial pressure. We have turned around fortunes on the field and crucial work on the security of our pavilion is well advanced.

"It’s an ideal time to hand over the baton to the youthful drive and enthusiastic leadership Steve brings to the club, to ensure that we go forward from strength to strength.”