Club Update: Winter 2023/2024


There’s a lot happening at the Cooper Associates County Ground at the moment, so I thought that this would be a good opportunity to wish you all “Seasons Greetings” and keep you up to date with everything that is going on behind the scenes.

The Outfield

We recently announced the appointment of Nick Pepper as our Head Grounds Person. Nick takes over from Scott Hawkins. Nick has outstanding knowledge of his profession, experience of working at the Cooper Associates County Ground and was the outstanding applicant for the position.

Extensive work has been undertaken to the outfield since the conclusion of the season, including re-seeding and drainage works. Once again, the weather has been horrendously wet, but on a positive note, the only part of Somerset that seemed to remain above water over the last few weeks was the area in front of the Colin Atkinson Pavilion. As I am sure you are aware, that has certainly not always been the case!

Business of Cricket Awards

It wasn’t just on the field of play that Somerset County Cricket Club excelled in 2023. The Club claimed three prestigious ECB Awards as well as being named as finalists in a further four categories.

Somerset won the ‘Transforming the Women’s Game’ Award in partnership with the Somerset Cricket Foundation, and the ‘Digital Campaign of the Year’ Award, whilst our very own font of all knowledge, Sarah Trunks did the Club proud when she was presented with the highly coveted ‘Dinesh Patel MVP’ Award for her collaborative work with partners across the game.

Fixtures 2024

As a Club, we believe that it is vital for the Cooper Associates County Ground to be hosting elite cricket at the height of summer in order to allow the South West to be inspired through cricket.

Somerset have led the way in lobbying the ECB to ensure that cricket is played at times when it is most convenient for people to watch it. We are delighted that this year will see the vast majority of County Championship matches with prime days over weekends.

However, there is still a lot more to do with regards to the schedule, but this is a step in the right direction.


Overseas Signing

Our Director of Cricket, Andy Hurry has once again worked his magic and secured the services of rising Australian allrounder, Will Sutherland.

Will is held in high regard within the game, is currently the Captain of Victoria and his recent performances in the Sheffield Shield and the Big Bash have caught the eye.  Will joins us in April and is due to stay until the conclusion of the group stages of the Vitality Blast.



It was announced recently that Tom Abell has taken the difficult decision to step down from the Club Captaincy after seven years. I am sure that you will join me in thanking Tom for everything that he has done for Somerset both on and off the field during his tenure. Tom has been a genuine talisman for us during that time, and we will never forget that incredible day at Lord’s in 2019 when he held the Royal London One-Day Cup aloft.

Tom still has a vital part to play in our future and I have no doubt that he will continue to contribute to Somerset winning games of cricket for a long time to come while also remaining the outstanding role model he has always been.

Tom’s successor will be named in due course.

The Women’s Game

Having previously been the Official Home of Women’s Cricket, we still consider the Cooper Associates County Ground to be the game’s spiritual home.

The women’s game continues to go from strength to strength and the support that it receives in the West Country is second to none. Taunton was the first venue to sell out an Ashes match in 2023 and ticket sales for the England v Pakistan WODI in 2024 are once again extremely strong.

It was great to see the likes of Lauren Filer and Dani Gibson gaining international recognition in 2023, and following the recent announcement of their ECB contracts, it’s also great to see Western Storm, and therefore the whole region, representing England alongside Storm’s Heather Knight.



I feel that is important to inform you that we have reached a mutual decision with our current Catering Partner, BaxterStorey, to withdraw from our current contract.

I would personally like to thank BaxterStorey for their efforts over the last two years, which has been a challenging period for the hospitality industry.

Details of the new catering arrangements will be shared in due course.


In a rapidly changing cricket world, the Executive and Board have been developing an exciting strategy for the Club over the last few months. This is a vital piece of work to ensure that Somerset remains at the ‘top table’ of cricket in this country for generations to come! We look forward to sharing details of the strategy with Members and supporters in the New Year.

Board Composition

In November, three Independent Appointed Board Directors informed the Club of their decision to resign. Rachel Baillache, Nathan Goddard and Rowena Sellens have all played a significant part in developing the strategy, as well as providing the Executive Team with support in various areas. Chair, Sir Michael Barber commented: ‘I wish to thank Rachel, Rowena and Nathan for their invaluable contributions over the last couple of years. They have helped in no small way to lay the foundations for the Club to build on going forward.’

A process to recruit three Appointed Directors with appropriate skills to help take the Club forward into an exciting future will be announced in early course.

That’s it for now!

Thank you for your support in 2023 – you really are a huge part of what makes this Club unique.

Merry Christmas and wishing you a very happy 2024!

Best wishes,

Gordon Hollins