A manager with Birmingham-based estate management firm MetroPM has been given a seven-month sabbatical to play cricket in Australia.
Henry Arnold, a property manager with Metro PM, has played cricket since the age of seven for Harborne Cricket Club, and even played county cricket for Warwickshire as an 11 and 12-year-old.
Mr Arnold specialises as a bowler and has now been contracted to play for East Bentleigh Central Cricket Club in Melbourne, Australia, in a season running from this October to April 2024.
His career in the UK has included being a regular in Harborne’s 1st and 2nd Teams, plus being in the Birmingham League and Area T20 winning team in 2023 for Harborne.
Mr Arnold, who has worked for MetroPM for six years, said: “I’ve loved playing cricket and it was always my dream to play cricket abroad.
“This opportunity to play in Australia and came up when I was approached by a cricket agent based in Melbourne who was visiting the UK for the summer, and I discussed this in detail with my bosses at MetroPM.
“They were enthusiastic for me to have what is the chance of a lifetime to play cricket out in Australia and I can’t thank them enough for granting me this sabbatical.”
Ian Smallman, a director at MetroPM, explained that while the sabbatical was unusual it was very much in keeping with the expanding company’s strategy to keep hold of its best staff.
Mr Smallman said: “Henry has been a loyal employee at MetroPM for six years and we’ve always been impressed with his commitment, quality and professionalism.
“We’ve also been very much aware of Henry’s outside interests and have keenly followed his progress as a bowler at Harborne Cricket Club.
“When this opportunity to play for a season in Australia came along, there was no way we were going to stand in his way.”
Mr Smallman added: “Henry has our full support to fulfil his cricket dream, and we are sure that by granting him this sabbatical he will return refreshed and ready to develop his career here at MetroPM.”
Incorporated in 2006, MetroPM is a customer-focused, proactive and expert-led business which focuses on block and estate management.
The company specialises in the complex area of service charge management with its wide range of statutory regulations and technical complexities.
MetroPM is a member of and regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
The company also holds full corporate membership of the Association of Residential Managing Agents (now called the TPI – The Property Institute), the leading trade association for firms managing private residential leasehold blocks of flats in England & Wales.