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Creating a welcoming environment: The Kennedy Gates

Sunday 10th September 2023

Kent Cricket

On Day One of Kent’s LV= Insurance County Championship match with Nottinghamshire, Kent Cricket & the Kent Cricket Heritage Trust officially unveiled the Kennedy Gates.

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The original ironwork formally positioned in the ‘old turnstile’ entrance to The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence were successfully reinstalled at the new Old Dover Road entrance ahead of Kent Spitfires’ T20 opener against Gloucestershire back in May.

Originally manufactured in Canterbury by H.M. Biggleston & Sons & installed in 1947, the gates have been repositioned & restored to their new position, replacing old temporary gates & fencing, due to a donation made by the Club’s Honorary Vice President & former Club Chair & President, George Kennedy.

The gates are now known as the Kennedy Gates, but still bear a plaque commemorating their original dedication – to the Kent cricketers that gave their lives during the Second World War. It honours thirteen men, who had differing levels of success as cricketers, but all of whom gave their lives for their country.

The new signage was unveiled on 10 September by George Kennedy, with Kent Cricket’s President for 2023, former captain Chris Cowdrey, also in attendance.

Kent’s Director of Operations, Nimmo Reid, said: “We’re pleased to have successfully retained a piece of the Club’s history whilst improving the pedestrian entrance to The Spitfire Ground with the installation of the Kennedy Gates.

“This is another part of our masterplan to develop The Spitfire Ground in the coming years, which we have labelled as ‘Creating a welcoming environment’.

“We hope that our Members and supporters appreciate the hard work that has gone into relocating the old turnstile gates, and are looking forward to further work to improve this entrance to The Spitfire Ground in due course.”

International T20 cricket is back at The Spitfire Ground after 12 years next Summer!

International T20 cricket will return to Canterbury on Thursday 11 July 2024 when The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence hosts the 3rd match in England’s IT20 series against New Zealand.

It is only the second time that Canterbury has hosted a Women’s International T20 match in its long history, and will be another boost for the continued growth of women’s cricket in Kent.

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