Warwickshire County Cricket Club has a loyal Membership base who follow the Bears both through the good times and the tough. Many have their own unique stories from following the Bears over the years, from the ‘I was there moments’, to the special feeling of being a Warwickshire Member and supporting their county at Edgbaston.
In a new feature, we are going to tell that tales from some of our Members, as they share their stories about being part of the #BearsFamily.
Harvey Woolf has been a Member at Warwickshire since the early 2000’s. He was gifted a one-year Membership as a work-leaving present almost 20 years ago. He has been back at Edgbaston every year since.
When the news of the pandemic outbreak broke and the country went into lockdown, it was clear that the domestic county season would be severely impacted.
But Harvey has no hesitation in contacting the Club and showing his support, in any way he could.
“It was a quick decision,” he said, recalling the moment he contacted the club to advise that he wanted to help by donating his Membership subscription.
“As I sent it I was conscious that it was barely a drop in the ocean, it’s a minute drip in the financial ocean, but it’s a gesture I wanted to make.
“The money was already committed to Warwickshire and it was just a way of saying you’ve got enough to think about and the last thing is whether or not to return my subscription. But I recognise that I am in a position that I can do that.
“I wanted to, in some way, show my support and help contribute to the finances of the Club during this time. It was an instinctive reaction to what was clearly going to be a pretty difficult situation.”
Harvey’s relationship with Warwickshire started in the early 2000’s, after being a regular goer to Test match cricket was gifted a Membership at the Bears.
“I was given Membership as a farewell gift from colleagues for a group I belonged to and ran. They very kindly gave me a year’s Membership and that was in the early 2000’s. That initial experience led to me renewing annually ever since.
“I was always a regular goer of Test matches at Edgbaston so they knew cricket was an interest of mine, and it was a delightful thank you from them.
“It was the experience and opportunities that Membership provided that encouraged me to renew. And over time I’ve brought friends along to matches as guests and they have joined too, so its had a sort of snowball effect.”Harvey Woolf, Warwickshire Member
The longer format is Harvey’s game of choice, enjoying the competitiveness of the County Championship, but also the match day feel of four-day games at Edgbaston.
“I try to go to at least one day of every home game of the Championship. It is very much so my favourite format.
“The day started with a obligatory bacon sandwich before play. We tend to then always occupy the same seats behind the bowlers’ arm, which is one of the delights of Membership is that you can get that view.
“Over my time following Warwickshire, I’m not an individual who has specific memories, its more about the overall experience of a day’s cricket. The great thing about county cricket is that it has a rhythm and that changes throughout the day. The most enthralling games are the low scoring ones, where it is a real mental battle between bat and ball.
“It’s the pleasure of winning, but also the competitiveness of the championship that makes it so attractive. It’s the history what makes it important, why winning a championship means so much because of what has happened in the past.”
But what resonates the most with Harvey, is the experience of being a Member at Warwickshire and what that means to him. Simply put, it’s what he does.
“It is what I do. It’s not about the winning, its about the total experience of being a Member at Warwickshire.
“It’s every time you visit Edgbaston, the people, the place that makes it so enjoyable.”