Suffolk's first rounders club is a hit - and now looking for competition

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team practising on Ravenswood green

Residents of the Ravenswood estate in Ipswich have come together to form the Ipswich Ravens Rounders Club - Credit: Sonya Duncan

A rounders club set up on the Ravenswood estate in Ipswich is doing its bit to bring the local community together after a tough 16 months of isolation caused by the coronavirus lockdowns. 

The Ipswich Ravens, who meet every Saturday morning on Ravenswood green, are the first rounders club in Suffolk and are open to anyone over the age of 16. 

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team on Ravenswood Green

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team welcome anyone over the age of 16 and meet on Ravenswood Green every Saturday morning - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Richard Stewart helped set up the club in August 2020, following the first coronavirus lockdown, he said: " Like most of the country I was getting frustrated and bored of not being able to do anything, I wanted to see some light at the end of the tunnel."

After being surprised to find there were no rounders clubs in Suffolk Mr Stewart put out a "call to action" to the local community in the Ravenswood residents Facebook group, and he was flooded with responses from people that wanted to have a go. 

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team were set up to address feelings of isolation, anxiety and inactivity - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Working for a children's mental health charity, Mr Stewart said that he knows how crucial physical activity can be for the body and mind. 

He said: "It is all about wellbeing, general physical health and mental health.

"Whenever we have new players join we all stand around in a circle and introduce ourselves. 

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"Our founder members will always say how it is a great way to meet people in the local area and how much they look forward to it." 

Ipswich Ravens Rounders player

Ipswich Ravens Rounders team are keen for more competition in Suffolk - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Ipswich Borough Council's park team now mark out a rounders pitch each week and Mr Stewart says people living on the estate often comment that it is "lovely to see Ravenswood green being used." 

Pupils at Ravenswood Primary school

Beni Antal (centre) won the competition run by Ravenswood Primary school to design a badge for the Ipswich Ravens rounders team - Credit: Louise Richardson

Recently Ravenswood Primary school showed there for support for the Ipswich Ravens by running a competition to design their badge - the competition winner was 10-year-old Beni Antal.  

If you are interested in joining the Ipswich Ravens, or would like some advice about setting up your own rounders club in Suffolk, you can contact Mr Stewart on 07717 757357 or via emailing: 

Mr Stewart added: " The idea is to get people to contact us and challenge us to a game - we need some competition in Suffolk." 

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Ipswich Ravens Rounders team meet every week on Ravenswood green - Credit: Sonya Duncan