Bere Regis Sports Club is the ‘operating name’ of the registered charity “Recreation Ground Bere Regis“, first registered as charity number 301100 on 29th October 1962. The charity acts as the local management of the recreation ground on behalf of the owners, Fields in Trust (formerly the National Playing Fields Association (NPFA)). The land was gifted to the NPFA by conveyance on 4th December 1929, by the former land owners, the Drax family.
As well as managing the public recreation ground the club acts as the “umbrella organisation” for the football and cricket sections, each of which has an organising committee and representatives on the sports club management committee. The football and cricket sections are therefore clubs in their own rights, affiliated to the appropriate governing body (The Football Association and the England & Wales Cricket Board) but, because of the charity structure, operate within the sports club governing document, as are the pool and darts sections.
The sports club therefore provides and pays for the upkeep of the ground, which is freely available to members of the public, at the same time as having to provide facilities that meet the set criteria to enable the football and cricket sections to compete in their respective county leagues. Needless to say, there is sometimes a conflict of interests that needs to be managed and we can’t please everyone all of the time.
The club receives no regular income from any outside agencies and therefore has to raise the funds necessary to maintain the ground and associated buildings, which it does by charging membership and match fees to those who play for teams organised by the various sports sections, by holding fund-raising events, by maintaining the bar and by applying for grant aid to help fund larger projects.