History

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In the late summer of 1990, Mike Mundy, a resident of Bradley Stoke, noticed that a sign had been erected on some waste ground in Baileys Court Road. It was advertising the site as the proposed venue for a bowls green and a cricket pitch.

 He had never played cricket himself but had loved the game since a small boy. He decided to explore the possibility of getting involved in the game and so made a telephone call to North Avon District Council (NADC) to enquire as to how an application should be made to use the cricket facilities, although at this stage he was a lone voice. The council informed him that an application form would be sent in the post.

 He then placed an advert in the Bristol Evening Post asking for interested parties to contact him with regard to forming a cricket club in Bradley Stoke. The first two replies were received from Sue Finney, who was a keen cricket fan and had moved from Birmingham with her job, and Paul Boulton who had played local cricket before in Bristol.

 There were soon other enquiries from a few more interested people, and by the time the application was submitted in the name of Bradley Stoke CC (BSCC), there were approximately ten people wanting to get involved. In September 1990, a committee was elected and a constitution was written and accepted.

 Notification was then received from NADC that another application had been submitted, also in the name of BSCC. It was suggested that the two parties meet and discuss how to proceed. The other applicant was a cricket team called Stoke Lodge CC (SLCC), who were already playing in the B & D league and played their home games atPatchwayHigh school.      

 The secretary of SLCC was contacted and a meeting was arranged. The eventual decision from this, and subsequent meetings, was that the two teams would amalgamate and SLCC would continue in the B & D in the 1991 season, and friendly matches on Sundays would be as BSCC. A new committee was formed and the BSCC constitution was accepted by the members of both clubs.          

 However there was challenge ahead as BSCC heard that two other cricket clubs had also applied to use the new facilities, and they were Winterbourne CC, and Stoke Gifford CC. Each club was advised that a presentation would have to be made to the leisure committee of NADC to explain why they should be selected. Due to work commitments, only Mike was available to make this and he duly gave the BSCC presentation to the council. Three things probably helped their cause and these were,

  1.  a passionate response as to why BSCC should be the choice,
  2. that neither of the other clubs attended in person, so their presentation was read to the committee and
  3. it was politically correct to have a club with the same name as the town.

 It was on June 12th 1991, that BSCC heard that they had been chosen by North Avon District Council to be the cricket club to use the superb new facilities at Bradley Stoke, thus ensuring an exciting future.

 So, as agreed, in 1991 SLCC played in the B & D league, and BSCC played on Sundays. Both teams played their home games atPatchwayHigh school, as the ground in Bradley Stoke would not be ready until 1992. However, during the 1991 playing season it soon became apparent that there was a difference of opinion between the amalgamated clubs as to how the beautiful game should be played. BSCC adopted the philosophy of wanting to win, but knowing how to lose gracefully, and making sure that the “Spirit of the game” was upheld at all times. After many failed attempts at trying to work together, the committee of BSCC decided to call an EGM with the proposal that the current set up be disbanded, and both clubs go their separate ways. The members of BSCC were so keen to have the proposal accepted, that they offered SLCC the incentive of receiving all funds of the joint club, which amounted to circa £700. The proposal was unanimously accepted at the EGM.

 A new committee was elected with the former members of BSCC elected to the same positions. The first task was to raise some money as BSCC were penniless. The first venture was in the autumn of 1991 when the club rented a plot at the Town’s community fun weekend. As there was no money available, the chair of the club paid for the pitch from his own account. Paul Boulton, Sue Jones and Mike Mundy attended on the day and a competition was held whereby three stumps were placed in the field and a pound coin was placed on the top of each one. The challenge was to bowl a cricket ball at the stumps and if you knocked off a coin or coins you kept them. The cost of entry was one pound for six balls. The major advantage for the club on the day was the uneven surface which meant only a few people succeeded in winning money. By the end of the day, and after the reimbursement of all costs, the club was in credit by £16 and they were on their way.                

During the winter of 1991/1992 the club arranged some social evenings including some highly successful live band extravaganzas. They also had the idea for a major fund raising exercise which was to get the Englandand Gloucestershire wicket keeper Jack Russell to officially open the premises for the cricket club. We approached Jack’s agent and negotiated that Jack would come along and meet people and sign autographs. In return BSCC agreed to buy one of Jack’s limited edition paintings. The print in question was called “Moment of Victory” and it depicted the winning run scored by Englandwhen defeating the West Indies at Sabina Park, Jamaicaon the 1st March 1990. It was signed by all theEngland players taking part in the match. Entry on the day would be by programme only and each one was individually numbered. At the end of the afternoon a draw would be made and the winner would receive the painting from Jack. There was also runner up prizes, including a full size cricket bat, aGloucester CC sweater, a miniature bat signed by the Gloucestershire CC team, and two vouchers which were donated by Globe Sports. 200 programmes were printed, selling at £2 each. Enough programmes were sold to cover costs and make a profit.

So on Saturday 11th April 1992 Jack officially opened the premises of BSCC. He was very sociable and amenable on the day, and local press coverage was provided, along with a mention in Wisden monthly.  

Shortly after this the 1992 season started, but unfortunately the pitch was not ready to play on. This was because originally the square had been seeded but stones and debris had not been removed. At the Club’s insistence the square had been turfed at the end of the autumn in 1991, but wasn’t quite ready for the season’s start. So, home games were played at PatchwayHigh Schoolwhich had an artificial pitch. This was allowed by the B & D league as the Club’s entry into the league was in division 4, which was the starting point for all new Clubs. The first game was away to Telephones CC and although a good performance ensued, BSCC were beaten. The first game at their own ground took place on 25th July against Rangeworthy CC and they won by 11 runs.     

So from humble beginnings and, in cricket club terms, a relatively short period of time, BSCC has grown into a very well run cricket club with seven adult teams and four teams in what is a very active youth section. They also run a mid week league which features teams from local businesses in a round robin tournament. They also operate the bar at the Club for themselves, the local Bowls Club who share the facilities, and for private hires.

BSCC is a very friendly club that continues with the ideals instigated by the original club members, that the great game of cricket must be played in the right spirit and for it to be a social vehicle for its members and guests.

 

 

 

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