Skelmersdale Cricket & Tennis Club was formed in  1891 by the local townspeople. At its AGM in November 1909 we were  accepted into the Southport & District Cricket League which had formed  in 1898. We went on to play our first League fixtures in the 10- team Division 1 in the Summer of 1910. It seems though, that we  resigned from the League at the end of that season, only to return  after cessation of World War I.

The first list of Officers is recorded as:

AB Forwood MP (President); R Tomlinson JP (Vice President); G Roper  (Vice President); W Kellet (Vice President); J Robinson (Vice President); with the Committee being: P Abram (Hon Treasurer); WH Aspinwall (Hon Secretary); JJ Pearce; JA Aspinwall;

H Brierley; E Whalley;H Garstin; T Cartmel; R Banks; T Chitson;  W Hindley; and H Valentine.

 

In 1912 Skelmersdale ran its own amateur cricket league, comprising the following teams: Skelmersdale; Rainford; Crawford Village; Bickerstaffe; Eccleston; and St Helens Recs. A trophy was presented by the Rt Hon Member of Parliament for Ormskirk, Mr Arthur Stanley.

The cup was won by Rainford in 1912 and 1913, and by Crawford in 1914.

The Skelmersdale & District Amateur Cricket League Cup was to be later acquired at an antique sale in Darwen, following a house clearance in Rainford. As it was of great historical importance to the Club, it was presented back to us by the purchaser, Mr Adelsburg.

The Ormskirk Advertiser cricket correspondent 'Longfield' reported in 1912, "The League was formed at the back end of last season and boasts six clubs. It promises to do much to foster cricket in the immediate local circles. I have been favoured with a League handbook, and on perusal, found that the rules are sound and well-adapted to promote rivalry between the competing clubs.. Where these amateur leagues are efficiently managed, they have the effect of rousing latent enthusiasm amongst players and spectators alike. I wish the new League every success."

Long-serving member and Life President, Mr John Forster inspects the trophy that has been recently returned to the Club.

 

 

Our Club badge (top left) is divided into four segments: The cricket bats to indicate that we are principally a cricket club; the miners' lamp, pick and shovel shows that our origins are from a mining community; the 'Red Rose' indicates our Lancashire roots; and the sheaves of corn also acknowledges that our origins come from the surrounding farming area.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI - 1891

 

Back Row: R Berry; J Cartmel; H Stringfellow;

C Webb; S Forster; P Lyon; J Prescott.

Front Row: JA Aspinwall; R Lyon; T Varty;

J Walmsley; E Cheston.

 

Membership Card from inaugral season in 1891..

 

Our President, A B Forwood was a Member of Parliament until retiring in 1898 due to ill health. He was Chairman of the Health Committee for some years, and was largely responsible for the great improvements in sanitisation in the late 1800’s.

In the late 19th century, the population of Skelmersdale was around 5000. In our Club's 100+ year history, there have been many changes. There has been the conflicts of two World Wars, which took our members away from their beloved game of cricket. Some of them were never to return.

A Plaque of Remembrance was presented to the Club,

with A Calling Bell (donated by Mr James Edwards)

 in memory of lives lost:

 

E Berry; J Briscoe; GK Deardon; WE Lowe; J Roughley; and W Sumner.

 

Details from The War Graves Commission:

 

Edward Berry: Gunner in 81 Battalion of The Royal Artillery. Age 29

James Briscoe: 2nd Battalion of The Coldstream Guards. Age 30

Geoffrey Knowles Deardon: Pilot Officer in The RAF Volunteer Reserve Age 21

William Ewart Lowe: W/Op- Air Gunner in 429 Squadron RAF Volunteer Reserve. Age 22

John Roughley: 83 Squadron RAF Volunteer Reserve. Age 21

William Sumner: Pilot in The RAF Volunteer Reserve. Age 21

 

 

 

At the Remembrance Service in 1949, Tom Farrimond, Chairman of Skelmersdale UDC commenced the service by saying "I believe that cricket symbolises the finest spirit of sportsmanship. Skelmersdale Cricket Club was formed many years ago to mould and develop the characters of young cricketers. This intention and ideal had been realised in the self-sacrifice of these six young men, who were now being remembered. They had played the game on the field, and they had played the game in the arena of life itself; holding nothing back to ensure victory."

 

---oooOooo---

 

 

William Sumner.
Born in Bickerstaffe.
A keen sportsman - also played for Everton (No.7)

William Sumner.
Born in Bickerstaffe.
A keen sportsman -

 also played for Everton (No.7)

Across is Skelmersdale Cricket Club, early 1900's..

 

Player on front row, fourth from left is Thomas Muldoon

 

(Picture courtesy of Mr Jim Muldoon)

 

A match report taken from an Ormskirk Advertiser cutting, reports on a game - Ormskirk (Extra Eleven) versus Skelmersdale:

"This match was played at Ormskirk on Saturday last, and produced a very tame game. Muldoon was the chief cause of Ormskirk's collapse, as he took seven wickets for 13 runs, four being taken in five balls. H Taylor secured the other three wickets for a run each.

Skelmersdale's first wicket knocked up the necessary runs, and then all interest in the game was lost as they went on to bat out their innings. The tempting nature of the Ormskirk bowling will be seen from the fact that six of the Skelmersdale wickets were caught".

Score: Ormskirk 17 all out Skelmersdale 53 all out.

 

The team comprised:

E Brierley; T Hardman; T Muldoon; S Butcher; H Taylor; F Swift; J Taylor; JE Clayton; W Murphy; R Birchall; and J Davis.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI in 1910..

 

Back Row: J Ashcroft; T Webster; H Marsh; S Lockett; J Webster; G Heath; R Fraser.

 

Centre: W Taylor; JE Clayton; T Muldoon; T Fraser; B Davis; A Tyrer.

 

Front Row: R Arnold; T Hardman; R Webster; E Brierley; HS Taylor.

 

In the Southport & District Cricket League's formative years the teams were mainly church-based, such as St Pauls; St Phillips; Burscough St John's; Derby Road Methodists and Holy Trinity, and later St Simon's. In subsequent years, the League evolved to include village and rural town teams. The League grew, up to the 1st World War, and by 1925 had four divisions, and by 1928 had Reserve Divisions 1 and 2 added. Of the pioneer clubs only Hesketh Bank and West End (part of Halsall/West End) still exist. The league now covers an area of approximately 20 miles radius, from Southport town centre. Travel to the away games in the Southport area was mainly done by bicycle, with sometimes two players making use of one bike by using the crossbar. Times were indeed difficult, particularly when you consider that they had to carry their kit as well. The subscription for membership in the early days was 'five shilling', which was extremely expensive for the time.

Shown across are Skelmersdale's Championship-winning side from 1921, with members of the Management Committee.

Standing at back: Mr Tasker; Inspector Pendlebury; Mr Harwood;

Mr Rushton

 

Standing: Mr. Edwards; Mr Huntington; George Blackledge; Jack Gale; Tom Esp; Sergeant Nuttall; Arthur Leyland; Edmund Brierley;

Jim Eccleston; Mr. Garner; Doctor Rotheram

 

Seated: Mr Ashcroft; Bill Roberts; Jim Yates; Harry Bridge; Dick Lyon;

Harry Taylor; Mr. Lyon

 

From the above team we know that:- Mr Tasker owned a bakery;

Inpector Pendlebury was a Police Inspector in Skelmersdale; Mr Harwood was part-owner of Skelmersdale Shoe Company; Mr Rushton owned a grocers' shop; Mr Edwards was a pit boss; Mr Huntington was a councillor; Ellis Blackledge owned a cold-meat and grocers' shop; Jack Gale owned a grocers' shop; Sgt Nuttall was a Police Sergeant in Skelmersdale; Edmund Brierley was a pit boss; Mr Garner was Co-Owner of T&W Garner; Doctor Rotheram had a surgery in Sandy Lane; Mr Ashcroft was a shop owner; Harry Bridge was a Bickerstaffe farmer.

In 1921 Skelmersdale reached the final of the Sandhurst Shield facing Derby Road Methodists. Despite posting a creditable score of 70,

Derby Road knocked the runs off, for the loss of just four wickets.

 

An extract from a 1921 scorebook, when Skelmersdale beat near-neighbours Burscough. Skelmersdale reduced Burscough to 14 all out,

thanks to 7 wickets from Arthur Leyland and 3 wickets from Jim Eccleston.

The Advertiser reported at the time that Skelmersdale had clinched the title with games to spare, winning 14 and losing only 3 of their 18 matches. Skelmersdale had opened the season with a victory over Duke Street, on a wicket that can best be described as suspect. Skelmersdale were bowled out for 33, but hit back to dismiss the home side for 20, with Arthur Leyland taking 5 wickets for 3 runs, and Jim Eccleston 4 wickets for 16 runs. An even more unusual match followed as Skelmersdale were bowled out for 61 by Mawdesley, with batsmen 9 and 10, Eccleston and Harry Bridge, contributing 29 of those runs between them. Mawdesley were then skittled out for 37, of which Southworth scored 33!! A truly amazing game. At the end of the season Arthur Leyland took the bowling honours with 178.3 overs, 43 maidens, 75 wickets for 371 runs, at an average of 4.94 runs each.

 

Arthur Leyland was a pace bowler of some repute. He was known to snap a wicket with the ferocity of his bowling.

 

The Club purchased the ground at School Lane, Skelmersdale on 26 November 1924, for the sum of £240 at auction from Lord Lathom Estates. It was 4.746 hectares in size. The purchase was due entirely to the testimony and foresight of five trustees:

 

JA Harwood; E Huntingdon; E Blackledge; H Singleton-Taylor;

and Doctor Rotherham.

 

The contours of the ground at School Lane were variable, and at the end of World War II, Pilkington Brothers Limited offered to level the area whilst mining sand for glass production, from surrounding areas. The offer was declined by Management as it was felt that upon cessation of the War, that playing members would expect to resume their playing careers as soon as possible after hostilities ended.

Across is Skelmersdale Cricket team from circ. 1924

One player who was a major asset to the team between 1922 and 1932 was Police Sergeant G Nuttall. Sergeant Nuttall recorded his highest score of 142, in a match between Ormskirk Police and Ormskirk Banks, played at Skelmersdale's School Lane ground.

The Club won the Southport & District Cricket League Division 1 in 1921, but then had to wait until 1936 to win it again. It was followed soon after, with a third triumph in 1939.

 

Our First XI were Division 2 winners in 1928; 1931; and 1934.

Above are Skelmersdale players from the early 1930's..

 

Bill Hallsworth;  Bill Draper;  Tom Corbett;  Tom Farrimond;  Joe Blackledge; Bill Wilson;  Harry Thompson;  Jim Bridge;  and William Sedgebeer.  

Fred Ackary's Division 2 Winners Medal from 1934

(Donated to the Club by Mr Ackary's daughter Mrs Di Dixon)

During the 1920's and 30's tennis was also a major part of the Club's activities, and the two grass courts were in constant use. In the early 1950's further facilities were added with the installation of a hard court. However, due to lack of funding and maintenance the courts were to fall into disrepair. And so the land was leased for a short period to Skelmersdale Young People's Club, who erected a clubhouse.

 

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 

(Formed in 1891)

Scott Rees Park  #  Blaguegate Lane  #  Lathom  #  Skelmersdale  #  WN8 8TY

Telephone:  01695 723678

In 1936, Lancashire County cricketer, Jack Iddon, visited us to present the League Champions trophy.

 

With Jack are Left to right: Bill Briscoe; Tom Farrimond; James Draper;

 A A Clucas and Jack Iddon.

The presentation was held in the Majestic Hall in the presence of of officials from Skelmersdale UDC and Ormskirk UDC. It began with the reading of a letter of apology from JB Broughton of Lancashire County Cricket Club who also recorded that in his opinion Jack Iddon should have been on the tour of Australia. The trophy was then presented to Skelmersdale's skipper Albert Lawrence.

Unfortunately, for a while Skelmersdale suffered from inconsistant form resulting in a number of relegations and promotions

between Divisions 1 and 2.

Across: Skelmersdale Cricket Club - 1935

 

Back Row: R Hunt (scorer); J Anderton; T Hardman; J Denny; T Berry;

C Rigby; and G Beck (Chairman)

 

Middle Row: E Winward; J Bridge; A Lawrence; W Briscoe; J Briscoe;

T Farrimond (President)

 

Front Row: H Welding and W Roughley

 

 

Around this time, Management Minutes show that Mr Briscoe and Mr Hunter had enquired about the purchase of sheep to keep the grass down. The cost of the sheep was quoted as between £13 and £15 each. This was thought to be too expensive, and the two gentlemen were asked to continue with negotiations.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI in 1938.

The team that defeated Eccleston in the Final of The Sandhurst Shield.

 

Back Row: F Ackery; C Rigby; W Smallshaw; J Blackledge;

J Briscoe;  A Lawrence.

 

Front Row: R Gill; F Hunter; J Davies; ???; W Briscoe; H Welding.

 

 

In the late 1930's we had one of the most feared and skilled fast bowlers in the whole league in Robert Waller Beck. In fact 'Waller' as he was known, still holds records to this date that remain unbeaten. Robert Waller Beck was actually picked for Lancashire, but unfortunately due to the war and other commitments could not dedicate himself to playing for the Lancashire team.

It is recorded that during the 'war years' three members - Tom Farrimond, Bill Roughley, and Bill Briscoe met once a week at the home of Mr Farrimond. The three gentlemen each paid a shilling a week to continue with their membership of the Cricket Club. In effect, this stopped the local authority from taking over the ground. It would stop the ground from being ploughed, which would have inevitably meant that the Club would have gone out of existence.

Left is the Skelmersdale team in 1950:

 

Back Row: H Welding; B Bithell; F Ackery; R Waller Beck; W Roughley.

 

Front Row: A Yates; W Taylor; W Briscoe; E Winnard;

A Lawrence;  R Gibbons

 

In the 1950's photograph are several prominent and long-serving members of Skelmersdale Cricket Club: Harry Welding; Fred Ackary; Robert Waller Beck; Bill Briscoe; Albert Lawrence; and Bill Taylor.

In 1953, it is minuted that Skelmersdale Cricket Club made a donation of 3 guineas to the Weymouth Disaster. In the same year Gregson's Coaches quoted £8 to take the team to Southport for a Bank Holiday away fixture. The Club declined, and instead decided to go on the 12.48pm train from Skelmersdale.

 

 

During the 1950's, and on the introduction of the New town in the 60's, Skelmersdale Cricket Club ran it's own cricket knockout competition for local hostelries and businesses. No doubt, many budding cricketers were borne in this competition.

 

Some of the participants were: Callow Engineering; Carborundum; Dalton, Engine; Fire Brigade; Gas Board; Gillibrands; Grimwoods; Hattersley's; NALGO; Ozzie Molyneux's; Pilkington; Richards & Merrill; Skem Arms; Skem Development Corporation; Skem Police; Stormy; Victoria; and The Wardens Club.

 

On the right, is the triumphant Victoria Hotel, winners in 1954...

And in 1956 a strong Stormy team went on to clinch the trophy. The Stormy team went on to provide several players for our Club - Roy and Alan Pheasant, Eddie Moss and Charlie Daniels to name a few.

 

Stormy team across:

 

Back Row: Frank Davies; Derek Cheetham; Stan Blackburn;

William Ackerley; Frank Parr; Roy Pheasant.

 

Front Row: Maurice Houghton; Charlie Daniels; Eddie Moss;

William Bromilow; George Ackerley; John Gregson.

 (Roy Melling not in photo).

 

The Officers for the Club in 1954 were: J Bimpson (President); TA Farrimond (Vice President); G Beck (Chairman); W Roughley (Vice Chairman); AJ Yates (General Secretary); A Leyland (Cricket Secretary); F Taylor (Treasurer);

In 1962 the existing pavilion was renovated, and in 1968 an extension was added in the form of a function room with dance floor. Messrs F & J Halliwell carried out the work, and Joe Halliwell, who was a patron of the Club, made an offer of "pay for the work, when you have the funds". The new function room was named 'The Halliwell Room' after Joe Halliwell's generous offer was accepted.

 

<<<<<<<<

 

Club captain, Roy Allerton rings the 'Calling Bell' at the Remembrance Service at the start of the season...

 

Club padre and cricketer, Reverend Peter Killick with Horace Heaton at the 1968 Remembrance Service..             

      >>>>>>>>

An extract from a junior scorebook in July 1962,

 

Burscough versus Skelmersdale

 

In 1962, our Junior team was up and running. As can be seen on the scorecard across, several long-time members of the Club were just getting their first taste of competitive cricket - John Forster jnr; Bill Regan; Bill Hardman; Frank Bradshaw; John Pye; and Harold Nelson. They were soon followed in 1964 with -Jim Rainford; John Ericson; Norman Fenney; Derek Farrington; Alan Birchall, Ken Crosbie; and Roy Dugdale.

Following on, in 1965 came: Ian Ramsbottom; Stephen Price; Graham Crossley; Joe Wharton; Derek Bolton; Steve Birchall; Pat Sharples; Harry Donnell; Keith Higham; Barry Bradshaw; and Jim Briscoe.

<<<<<<<<<<<

 

Left:  Players, officals and supporters assemble for the pre-season Remembrance Service in the clubhouse..

 

Big-hitting Alan Pheasant, who scored 102 not out in 1972, which was the first century scored at School Lane, since Jimmy Nelson in the late 1950's.

>>>>>>>>>>

 

'The Double'

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI, who were Division 1 Champions and Sandhurst Shield Winners in 1965...

 

Back Row: W Beck; K Hodge; A Forster; B Waller Beck;

J Stopforth; B Smith; J Finn; and C Webley.

 

Front Row: E Simpkin; J Nelson; R Allerton;

G Beck (President);  J Forster jnr.

 

 

And the photograph across is the Skelmersdale 1st XI at the opening of the new pavilion at School Lane in 1968..

 

Back Row: H Heaton; H Welding; W Briscoe; W Roughley.

 

Centre Row: D Slee; A Forster; W Regan; F Bradshaw; W Hardman;

D Terry.

 

Front Row: N Stephenson; H Nelson; A Pheasant (capt); J Forster;

B Finnegan

 

Umpires: C Webley and J Wright.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI in 1969..

 

Back Row: Horace Heaton; Harold Nelson; Brian Finnegan; Joe Yates; John Stopforth; Roy Allerton; George Beck

 

Front Row: Ken Wainwright; Alan Pheasant; Norman Stephenson;

Alan Forster; John Forster jnr.

 

Following the superb 'double' triumph in 1965, the First XI went one better in 1973, when winning the 'treble' as Division 1 Champions, Sandhurst Shield Winners, and Six-a-Side Trophy winners..

John and Alan Forster show their batting prowess at St Simons' in 1970..

The Treble

 

The Sandhurst Shield had also been won in the previous season, in 1972, whilst Divison 1 Championship was won again in 1976. This was quite a successful period in the history of

Skelmersdale Cricket Club.

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI - Treble Winners in 1973

 

Back Row: Alan Forster; John Bell; Les Birchall; Harold Nelson.

 

Middle Row: Alan Pheasant; Bill Regan; John Forster jnr.

 

Front Row: Wally Sherbourne; Frank Bradshaw; Jimmy Spencer;

 Roy Allerton.

Lancashire's Jack Simmons presents a cheque to our club Skipper, Roy Allerton

 

Left/Right:

 

Brian Finnegan; Joyce Pheasant; Jack Simmons;

Keith Middlehurst; Roy Allerton; Bryn Jones;

Sheila Birchall; Alan Pheasant; Alan Forster

On right - Mr Bill Briscoe makes a presentation to long-standing player, member, and official at

Skelmersdale Cricket Club, John F Forster.

In the early 1970's it was decided to build an extension with bar. Obviously, times were hard and we needed to beg and borrow to complete the build. It was described as 'like an episode of Boys from the Blackstuff'. A handful of Club members worked at weekends to complete the extension, which was completed with the help of an £800 grant from Burtonwood Brewery.

 

Left: Alan and John Forster put away bat and pads to make a start on the footings. We were offered cheap bricks from the local Lathom Brickworks. Rumour has it, that one day a wagon driver turned up at our ground asking for directions to somewhere in Skelmersdale. He was told that we would point him in the right direction if, in return, he would collect us 'one or two' bricks from Lathom Brickworks. He duly agreed and came back with several pallets of bricks. We are forever grateful to the wagon driver and indeed to Lathom Brickworks.

 

 

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI in 1980

 

Back Row: Michael Moss; Joe Yates; Eddie Berry;

Geoff Ashton;  Peter Fletcher; Dale Gordon (scorer)

 

Front Row: Arthur Goldstein; John Forster;

Alan Pheasant; John Robinson; Gary Hadfield.

 

The Division 1 Championship almost proved illusive in the 1980's, when Skelmersdale were Runners-Up on four occasions, in 1982, 1985, 1986, and 1987, but the much-desired win did come in 1984.

At around 1983, a further major development took place. This time the old pavilion was demolished, and replaced with new changing-rooms, lounge, kitchen, and toilets. Left, is an artists impression of our School Lane ground, presented by Mr Tommy Ollerton.....

OUCH !!! Chris Berryman takes a nasty delivery on his 'box'  >>>>>>>>>>

  

 

<<<<<<<<<  Skelmersdale 2nd XI openers, Bill Regan and Eddie Moss, look composed as they make their way to the crease.

Across: A dismissal at our School Lane ground, and the batsman makes the long walk back to the pavilion.

 

 

As part of various refurbishments in the 1970's, a new bar was installed, and duly opened by Lancashire and Indian wicket-keeper, Farokh Engineer.

 

Left to Right: John F Forster; Cllr Philip Bond; Bill Briscoe; and Farokh Engineer

In the mid 1980's Skelmersdale enticed prolific batsman Derrick Knight (pictured below) to join the Club. It immediately proved to be a shrewd move, with many consistently high scores. In 1988, Derrick rattled the bowlers of Ormskirk, Northern and Darwen to all corners of the ground in The Cockspur Cup. He scored 101 against Ormskirk, 79 against Darwen, and a superb 95 against Northern. It was followed by a quick 49, in a 1-run win against Eagley. After 15 innings he had scored a magnificent 862 runs.

 

 

Above is the popular tennis section at Skelmersdale Cricket Club

 

Left to right:  Kathleen Wilson;  Jennifer Rigby;  Marjorie Davies;  Jennifer Hardman;  Florence Johnson;  June Hardman; 

and Susan Berry.

 

 

Over the years our ground and clubhouse has been used for a number of sporting activities (as well as cricket) - football, ladies hockey, and table tennis. Also quiz and domino teams have enjoyed the facilities of the club.

 

Lady members of the Club have been the backbone of fundraising throughout the years, in the form of bingo evenings, summer fayres, dances, and the 200-club draw. We look to have at least one Sportsman's Evening per year.

 

In November 1991, we held a Sportsmans' Evening. The guest speaker was former Lancashire cricketer, Jack Simmons with comedian Danny O'Hara.

 

Across are the two guests with members of our Management committee.

 

Some of the other sportsmen to be our guest for the evening are -

Ron Yeats (Liverpool FC); Alex Murphy Ray French, and Kel Coslett (St Helens RLFC); Geoff Miller (Derbyshire CCC); Jim Mills (Widnes RLFC); Mike Cowans (Yorkshire CCC); Brian Labone and Gordon West (Everton FC); John H Stracey (World Welterweight Boxing Champion); Mike Watkinson and Stuart Laws (Lancashire CCC); Frank Worthington (Bolton Wanderers FC); Ellery Hanley (Wigan RLFC); and Kevin Lynch (Premier League referee).

 

 

 

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI in 1990

 

Back Row: Phil Wright; Jimmy Green; Mark Syers; Bill Molyneux;

Neil Middlehurst; Alan Pheasant; Sheila Birchall (scorer)

Front Row: John Forster jnr; Peter Blakey; John Bell;

Tony Manley; Paul Bailey

Back Row:  Neil Middlehurst;  Alan Pheasant;  Paul Bailey;  ???: 

Steve Maddocks;  Michael Moss.

 

Front Row:  John Forster jnr;  Jimmy Green;  Tony Manley; 

John Bell;  Peter Blakey;  Phil Wright.   

Skelmersdale Cricket Club sponsor, Brian Heathcote (centre) presented the awards at the 1990 Annual Presentation Dinner.

 

Left/Right: Tom Holland; John Forster; John Bell (1st XI Capt);

Brian Heathcote; Bill Regan; Barry Bradshaw (3rd XI Capt);

and John Pye (2nd XI Capt).

 

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Site updated 27 February 2014    (News) 


  From 1891 to 2001

 1900's
 1920's

Right:   Guest speaker Geoff Miller presents a cheque for £500 and junior kit bag at the Sportsmans' Dinner in April 1991. The presentation was made on behalf of the Lord's Taverners Foundation in conjunction with the National Cricket Association.

 

Left to Right: John Bell (Capt); Billy Bean (Comedian); Geoff Miller; John Forster; and Alan Pheasant.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI, in 1997...

 

Back Row: Peter Blakey; Dave Hornby; Ian Morris;

 Phil Ashcroft; Joe Till; Jonas Smith; Eddie Hornby.

 

Front Row: Paul Mercer; Brett Milini;

Neil Middlehurst; Tony Manley; Andy Donnelly.

The Division 1 Championship was won for the eighth time in 1991. We began the next century with former skipper John Bell making a triumphant return to the Club. He guided us to Division 1 Champions in 2000 and 2001.

 

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI, at the start of the 2000 season...

 

Back Row: Danny Maddocks (scorer); Chris Killorn; John Bell;

Andy Molyneux; Joe Till; Ian Morris; Jonas Smith; Eddie Hornby.

 

Front Row: Tony Manley; Peter Blakey; Phil Wright; Andy Donnelly.

 

Across, Skelmersdale Cricket Club 1st XI are crowned Premier League Champions in 2000.

 

Back Row: Chris Killorn; Ian Morris; Andy Molyneux; Joe Till;

Neil Penketh; Andy Donnelly; Dave Hornby

 

Front Row: Jonas Smith; Peter Blakey; John Bell; Phil Wright; Tony Manley; Danny Maddocks (scorer)

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI won its first Southport & District League title in 1921, with the latest one in 2001, which led to promotion into the Merseyside & Southport Cricket Alliance.

 

 

In September 2001, Skelmersdale 1st XI closed the season with a trophy, the last one to be won at the old ground in School Lane.

 

Below: Skipper, Phil Wright receives the Division One Championship Trophy from S&DACL Official, Mr Brian Small

Below are some of the many overseas and international players who have played at our School Lane ground:-

 

Mark Greatbach - Preston and New Zealand

Sonny Ramadhin - Little Lever and West Indies

Collis King - Westhoughton and West Indies

Andrew Kennedy - Blackburn Northern and Lancashire

Ashley Noffke - Sefton Park and Australia

Joe Scuderi - Nelson, Lancashire and Australia

Phil Jaques - Northern, Northants, Worcs, and Australia

The 'Sandhurst Shield' years...

The Sandhurst Shield always proved to be a popular knockout competition for Skelmersdale, with many exciting encounters against local rivals.

The Sandhurst Shield goes back to 1913, when it was presented to The League by the now-defunct Sandhurst Cricket Club.

We won 'The Shield' in 1925, then 1938, and the following year 1939. There were a few barren years, but we did reach the Final four times in the 1950's, only to finish Runners-Up on each occasion.

After finishing Runners-Up in 1960, we got our name on The Sandhurst Shield again in 1965, at the same time competing the 'double', as Division 1 Champions.

Skelmersdale 1st XI, Runners-Up in The Sandhurst Shield in 1955

 

Back Row: Jim Yates; Jim Nelson; Jim Proctor; Roy Allerton;

Alf Carlisle; Brian Holland; Arthur Leyland; George Beck

 

Front Row: Frank Taylor; Alan Sumner; Alan Yates; Bill Briscoe; Harry Welding; Ronnie Marsh; Jim Sumner.

 

Seated: Kenny Hodge (scorer)

 

 

In the Sandhurst Shield Final of August1955, the Ormskirk Advertiser reported that 2000 spectators watched the game between local rivals Skelmersdale and Burscough, which Skelmersdale narrowly lost.

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI skipper Roy Allerton and his team are presented with the Sandhurst Shield in 1965

In 1968, we were again Runners-Up in the Sandhurst Shield, with the team across -

 

Back Row: Brian Finnegan; Roy Allerton; Ben Ford;

Joe Yates; Derek Bell; Harold Nelson; Jim Briscoe.

 

Front Row: Les Birchall, Alan Forster; Alan Pheasant;

John Forster jnr.

 

The 1970's were to be successful for Skelmersdale in the Sandhurst Shield, winning in 1972, 1973, and narrowly missing three-in-a-row, when Runners-Up in 1974.

We did go on to win it again in 1977.

There were some outstanding personal performances in this era, notably from: Roy Allerton, Brian Finnegan, and Eddie Berry with the ball; and John Bell, Alan Pheasant, Les Birchall, and Harold Nelson with the bat.

 

 

 

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI in 1974

 

Back Row:   John Bell; Joe Yates; Eddie Berry;

Frank Bradshaw; Alan Pheasant; Jim Briscoe

 

Front Row:   Harold Nelson; Alan Forster; Brian Finnegan;

John Forster jnr; Les Birchall

 

Skelmersdale reached the Sandhurst Shield Final on several occasions in the 1980/90's, without being able to win the trophy.

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI in 1995...

 

Back Row:   Eddie Hornby;  Glyn Jones;  Jonas Smith; 

 Neil Penketh;  Dave Hornby;   Andy Donnelly.

 

Front Row:  Ian Morris;  Peter Blakey;  Tony Manley; 

Neil Middlehurst;  Michael Moss

 

Skelmersdale reached the Sandhurst Shield Final on several occasions in the 1980/90's, without being able to win the trophy.

 

Across is our 1st XI from 1991 when we were defeated in the Final by Orrell Red Triangle.

 

Back Row: Derrick Knight; Alan Pheasant; Phil Ashcroft;

Steve Birchall; Peter Blakey; John Robinson;

Sheila Birchall (scorer)

 

Front Row: Michael Moss; Neil Middlehurst; John Bell;

Tony Manley; Bill Molyneux.

Skelmersdale 2nd XI ...

Skelmersdale 2nd XI were mainly competing in The Southport & District Cricket League Reserve Division 1,

and The Pochin Cup knockout competition.

 

The Second XI had been Division 3 winners in 1922, and Reserve Division 2 winners in 1928. We were also Divison 4 winners in 1934.

 

<<<<<<  Skelmersdale 2nd XI circ.1952

 

Back Row: PC Harold Thorne; Bob Leyland; John Wiffin;

Len Jordan; Dave Chappell; Gordon Rawsthorne;

Arthur Leyland

 

Front Row: Brian Rainford; Norman Webster; Brian Holland;

Arnold Taylor; Jack Gaskell

 

And the following season Skelmersdale 2nd XI team has changed considerably.....

 

Back Row: Bill Stockley; Bob Leyland; Ken Platt;

Brian Marshall; G Dobson; Mary Leyland (scorer)

 

Middle Row: Dave Chappell; Fred Hunter; Jim Blackledge;

 Brian Holland;

 

Front Row: Jack Gaskell; Ronnie Stockley; Les Appleton

<<<<<<   Skelmersdale 2nd XI in 1956

 

Back row:   R Moores (Umpire); Jimmy Spencer;

Harry Wynn; Brian Marshall; William Roughley;

Brian Smith; Eric Simpkin; Arthur Leyland

 

Front row: Colin Lawrence; Alan Forster; Stan Price;

Harry Ramsay; Les Appleton; Ian Roughley;

Arthur Foulkes (Scorer)

 

In 1959 Second XI bowler Bob Leyland took an amazing 12 wickets for 17 runs in 2 games over a Bank Holiday weekend, against West End 2nd XI and Halsall 2nd XI

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 2nd XI, in 1962..

 

Back Row: R Moores (umpire); Joe Blackledge;

Jim Spencer; Bob Leyland; Brian Marshall; Brian Beck;

George Beck

 

Front Row: John Forster jnr; Bill Taylor;

Norman Stephenson; John F Forster;

Ray Farrington; Frank Stacey

Skelmersdale 2nd XI in 1968 across..

 

Back Row: Jim Briscoe; Joe Yates; Brian Marshall;

Eddie Berry;  Jimmy O'Neill; John Stopforth;

Geoff Lowe (Scorer)

 

Front Row: Joe Sweeney; John F Forster;

Jimmy Spencer; John Ericson; Ken Wainwright

 

Skelmersdale 2nd XI went on to win the Reserve Division 1 in 1972; 1976; and 1978..

.....ooo0ooo.....

 

Across is the 1976 title-winning team:

 

Back Row:  J Spencer; S Walsh; E Berry; G Ashton;

 G Hadfield; P Chalmers

 

Front Row:  K Harrison; J Bird; W Briscoe; W Regan; E Moss

 

Seated:  S Birchall

 

Skelmersdale 2nd XI were Division 2 winners in 1983 and 1992, as well as being Divison 3 Winners in 1991..

'The Pochin Cup' years ...

The Pochin Cup had the name of our 2nd XI engraved on it at regular intervals, particularly during the 1970's and 80's.

We got a taster with Runners-Up in 1969 and 1970.

 

Across is Skelmersdale Cricket Club 2nd XI

for the 1969 Pochin Cup Final......

 

Back Row:  Norman Fenney; Joe Sweeney; Tom Berry;

 Frank Bradshaw; Kenny Hodge; Eddie Berry; 

Jimmy O'Neill; and .....???

 

Front Row:  Jimmy Spencer; John F Forster;

Brian Marshall; Bill Regan; Wally Sherbourne.

In 1971 our Second XI won the trophy for the first time.....

 

Back Row: JF Forster; .....??; W Sherbourne; J Dawson; J Legge;

 R Aspinwall

 

Front Row: J O'Neill; J Spencer; K Wainwright; E Moss; W Regan

 

Then from 1974 to 1980, we won the Pochin Cup

 five times,

  in 1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, and 1980.

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 2nd XI from 1979...

 

Back Row: Peter Blakey; Mike McEvoy; Brian Finnegan; Norman Fenney; John Pye; Eddie Moss; Arthur Goldstein; Gareth Jones

 

Front Row: John Bennett; David Wright; Michael Moss;

Geoff Ashton;  Bill Regan; Stuart Smith

 

 

Further wins followed in The Pochin Cup, in 1982, 1983, 1986, 1991, and 1992..

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 2nd XI, in 1990

 

Back Row: Ruth Middlehurst (scorer); Joe Yates;

Phil Ashcroft;  Phil Wright; Mark Syers;

Mick Vella; John Forster

 

Front Row: John Ericson; John Pye; David Holcroft;

Steve Maddocks; and Ian Girvin

<<<<  the Skelmersdale Cricket Club 2nd XI team

at the Pochin Cup Final in 1992.......

 

Back Row: Bill Regan; Mick Vella; Paul Mercer; Phil Wright;

 Ian Morris; Phil Ashcroft; Joe Yates

 

Front Row: Michael Forster; Steve Maddocks; David Holcroft;

John Forster; Gary Hadfield; Philip Yates

 

After winning The Pochin Cup again in 1993, there was a gap before we won it again in 2001 and 2002...

Skelmersdale 2nd XI in 2001

 

Back Row: John Littleton; Neville Faza; Ian Morris; Matt Fenney;

Kyle Till; Kevin Panther; John Hudson (scorer)

 

Front Row: Dave Farrell; Peter Blakey; Steve Maddocks;

Michael Forster; Steve Griffiths

Skelmersdale 3rd XI with Cup exploits..

Skelmersdale Cricket Club 3rd XI

were Leyland Trophy Runners-Up

in 1989

 

Back Row:  Paul Bennett; Stuart Smith; 

Peter Melling; Peter Davies; Joe Till;

Barry Bradshaw; Ian Morris.

 

Front Row:   Phil Wright; Dave Ashley; Mike Vella;

Malcolm Moss;  Dave Cassidy

Supporters come down to School Lane..

<<<<<<<<   

A game in progress at our School Lane ground...

 

 

 

Senior members enjoy a spot in the sun down

at School Lane     >>>>>>>>

<<<<<< 

Two stalwarts of our Club, Bill Taylor and Gerard 'Snowy' Peat, discuss the game over a quiet pint...

 

Another character who would frequent our Club with banter and tales from the past, was the dapper Frank "Whisky-weasel" Sedgewick. On one away trip for a Knockout Cup game in Yorkshire, Frank challenged the locals to a game of pool in the clubouse after the game. He refused a selection of pool-cues, and promptly started the game with his walking stick. And he won.  >>>>>>

 

 

In 1998, Skelmersdale Cricket Club made the monumental decision to move from its School Lane ground in the old town, to a purpose-built facility on the outskirts of the town.

Former Lancashire and England fast-bowler, Peter Lever was commissioned to oversee the new development. The new ground and clubhouse at 'Firswood Park' Lathom was officially opened in 2002, with a match between a Skelmersdale XI and a Southport & District Representative XI.

And so, after over 100 years, the time has come to leave School Lane.

A place of so many memories, for so many people.

But before we closed the gates for the last time, we had to play a challenge match between players 'past and present'......

 

Players past, present and future assemble for a final photograph at School Lane...

 

The Skelmersdale Advertiser reported "One hundred and ten years of cricket at School Lane, Skelmersdale came to an end on Saturday, and immediately the heavens opened as if mourning the moment.

Fittingly, it was organiser and Vice-President Bill Regan who took the very last wicket, when he bowled Michael Moss, as Regan's team (101) beat Tony Manley's side by 12 runs.

Players past and present came from near and far.

They included David Holcroft, Alan Forster, John Forster, Eddie Moss, Stuart Smith, Geoff Ashton, Michael Moss, Eddie Berry, Bill Molyneux, Phil Yates (representing his dad Joe, who was indisposed in America), Michael Forster, Malcolm Moss, John Pye, Bill Greenwood, and Gerard Peet.

They were all kept in order by umpires Ray Farrington and Jim Briscoe.

Torrential rain fell just as the final wicket fell, a poignant farewell as the Club prepares to move to a new home, just half-a-mile away in Blaguegate Lane.

But people who attended a formal dinner that night all took away a souvenir by which to remember the old Club and ground, a medal inscribed 'Time moves on, but memories are forever' ."

 

 

 

 

Please press the 'History 2' button for our continuing history at our new Firswood Park ground..
Addendum:  The following photographs have been passed on to me.  If anyone knows the years, has more details, or can add names to faces - please let me know.  Thanks  DL
Skem CC circ 1930 - names??
Skem CC circ 1930 - names??
1938 Sandhurst Shield Fianl team..names??
1938 Sandhurst Shield Fianl team..names??
SkemCC - year and names ??
SkemCC - year and names ??
SkemCC - year and names??
SkemCC - year and names??
SkemCC year and names??
SkemCC year and names??
SkemCC year and names??
SkemCC year and names??
SkemCC 1955 - names ??
SkemCC 1955 - names ??
Skem CC on tour 1978. Where and names??
Skem CC on tour 1978. Where and names??
 
Presentation Evening - when??
Presentation Evening - when??
More details for 2nd XI in Pochin Cup Final (1991), played at Croston
More details for 2nd XI in Pochin Cup Final (1991), played at Croston
More details for 2nd XI (1993?) in Pochin Cup Final at Hesketh Bank
More details for 2nd XI (1993?) in Pochin Cup Final at Hesketh Bank
SkemCC 1998 - more details??
SkemCC 1998 - more details??

Copyright © Derek Lowe - Skelmersdale Cricket Club, 2010 - All rights reserved

Two Skelmersdale veterans, Alan 'Swoop' Forster and David 'Hamburger' Holcroft

put on their "whites" again for the last game at our School Lane ground..

A minutes silence was held prior to the game,

in memory of Skelmersdale CC members

who were no longer with us.

The service was also a tribute to those that had

lost their lives in New York in September 2001.

A large crowd gathers for the last game at

School Lane...

and a party atmosphere gets into full swing..

 

And so the final game commences.....

 

The leaves are falling on the outfield,

and the sun sets on the final game at

School Lane..

 

 

<<<<<<<<<

Skelmersdale and Hesketh Bank pose for the camera prior to The Sandhurst Shield Final in 1974

 

Skelmersdale 1st XI skipper, Alan Pheasant collects The Sandhurst Shield in 1977

>>>>>>>>>>

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