Thursday, September 22nd, 2016

John Graham’s Life Long Love Affair With The County

John Graham’s Life Long Love Affair With The County

Crown Domestic Appliances owner John Graham has backed up his life-long love for Worcestershire CCC with a series of investments and sponsorship deals spanning more than two decades.

John's latest helping hand to the County will see Crown Domestic Appliances act as main sponsor for tomorrow evening's end of season awards dinner evening being held in the Chestnut Marquee.

It follows from the company funding the 150th Anniversary Gates which can be seen at the main entrance to New Road earlier in the year.

Another project funded by Crown Domestic Appliances was the purchasing last season of a three ton power roller – the heaviest ever acquired by the county and of significant benefit to head groundsman Tim Packwood and his team when preparing the square.

But John's willingness to help the County stretches back to the 1990s.

He was Managing Director of Scandavanian white goods manufacturers ASKO who came to the rescue by donating two washing machines and two tumble driers to the Club.

Then he organised for Chinese multi-national consumer electronics and home appliances company HAIER to become Worcestershire CCC's main sponsors for two seasons via his company Sovereign Appliance Marketing.

John is modest about his contributions to Worcestershire but says: "This has been my club from when I was a boy and you try and do whatever you can do when the need arises.

"The first time we put anything tangible into the club came out of a discussion with Duncan Fearnley (former Worcestershire CCC chairman) over lunch.

"He mentioned that the Worcestershire kit was being washed by hand in a bath and at that time I was managing director of ASKO who just happened to make probably the best washing machines and tumble driers in the world!

"I went away and we delivered two washing machines and two tumble driers to the County. It was something the club needed, we could do and help with.

"I was then MD of Sovereign Appliance Marketing who were the exclusive distributors for the HAEIR brand in the UK.

"The club's sponsors decided to pull out and it opened the door and I persuaded the Chinese to invest as main sponsors for two seasons. It was a Haier brand but it was organised by my company, Sovereign.

"Then there was the investment in the power roller and the Anniversary Gates and now we are delighted to be sponsoring the Awards Evening.

"If the club needs something and we are in a position to do it, then we are delighted to help."

John has been a life member of the County for 25 years but first watched them in action in the 1960s on out grounds such as Dudley and Stourbridge.

When asked to select his favourites players, he said: "That's a tough one, there have been so many good players, but probably of the batsmen, Glenn Turner, and of the bowlers, Jack Flavell."