Club History

 

Bredbury St Marks Cricket Club was formed in 1913 by the players and officials of the football club of the same name. The Cricket Club rented fields off Werneth Road, Woodley, our present ground, which had been previously occupied by Greave Cricket Club. We were accepted into the Stockport and District League and won the championship in our first year. Play continued into 1914 then had to be suspended on the outbreak of war late in the season.

 

By 1919 a resumption was possible and the club joined the High Peak League. In 1922 we won both the First and Second Division Championships and the Second XI were successful the following year and in 1928. It is interesting to record that the subscriptions at this time were 10s (50p) for players, 5s (25p) for juniors and the tea ladies were treated leniently at 3s 6d (17.5p).

 

By the 1930's many improvements had been carried out and the square had become a featherbed which was the envy of visiting teams the result of hard work with limited equipment. An average of 150 per innings in 1936 bears testimony to this fact. Although resources were limited negotiations began in 1938 to buy the ground and the Club was able, through the industry of it's members and by the generosity of Mrs Jane Harrison, to purchase the ground for the use of cricket, by 1940.

 

During the late 1930's the club felt that it had the best crop of young talents so far in it's history but the long-threatened Second World War erupted and was to destroy much more than the aspirations of a cricket club.........

 

In the immediate post-war years Bredbury struggled to achieve respectability in its league postions. However the 1950's brought a marked improvement in the club's fortunes. Off the field, a new pavillion was built at a cost of £2500 and in common with ten other clubs formed the Derbyshire and Cheshire Cricket League in 1952. Both teams had their success, culminating in the league championship in 1959. Talented juniors had by now emerged through the ranks and were strengthening the senior teams which were to form the backbone of the club for some years. The Club's Golden Jubilee in 1963 came at a time of great success and enthusiasm.

 

The club continued to develop both on and off the field and the 1960's and early 70's were undoubtedly some of the most successful in the Club's history. As well as winning the First Division Championship in 1966 and 1969 we were runners-up in the years between. The 2nd.XI were also on the crest of a wave during this era. The culmination of this period was the outstanding achievement of winning the 'Double' in 1971 when both teams won their respective divisions.

 

Alas success does not continue forever and by 1973 no less than eight first team players had moved on, some for business reasons, others to develop their cricketing ability elsewhere. Once more, team rebuilding had to take place. We were fortunate to possess a very enthusiastic set of juniors who in 1973 and 1976 won their respective Divisons but it would take time for them to help imporve the fortunes of the senior teams.

 

Times were changing. People were no longer coming in large numbers to watch their local sports team as had been the custom at Bredbury. There were many reasons, television, individual sports, car ownership and other interests were encroaching and the club had to accept that it could not exist on the income from cricket alone. Accordingly, the pavilion was extended to provide a larger social area which incorporated a bar and the general facilities were upgraded. New, detached changing rooms were built which incorporated showers and, as if to show that nothing was to remain as before we joined another league in 1978.

 

The Cheshire Cricket League comprising some 24 clubs at the time covered a far larger area than had been the case before. Several of these clubs were much larger if not better than Bredbury. We were initially successful in achieving First Division Status, however the Club's fortunes fluctuated during the 1980's. By 1988 the club were back into the First Division with a good squad of senior players and the back-up of emerging quality from the junior development programme.

 

Meanwhile, club and ground improvements continued to be carried out. New drainage, perimeter fencing and improvemnts to the score box, dressing rooms and pavilion were carried out in 1987 with the aid of labour provided by the Community Services Programme of Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council.

 

If the winning of the 1st Division Championship is the pinnacle of success, then the 1990's was the most successful era to date. The Championship was won in 1993, 1997 and 1998, and but for the size of the ground the efforts of the club to join a higher echelon of cricket in an enlarged Cheshire County Cricket League would surely have been successful.

 

Ground improvements continued during this decade with new attached changing rooms being built in 1994 at a cost of £32,000 thus enhancing the already good facilites in the clubhouse. Bredbury have, however, never been anything other than ambitious, and the club have high hopes of shortly moving to a new 7.5 acre site with new pavilion and amenities.

 

In the early millenium years the club maintained its ambition and efforts to reach the alusive spot in The Cheshire County League, some might suggest this should have been the case some years earlier on the back of the late 90's success. Alas in 2001 the Club were promoted to the 2nd Divison Of the County League where in the first season managed a respectable 4th position.

 

The club bowed out of the Meller Braggins Cheshire Cricket League in style by picking up both 1st and 2nd.XI knockout cup trophies in 2001. These early years have seen overseas amateurs introduced to the club, where to date Chanjarit Singh from Calcutta India, Dale Bradley from Adelaide, Matthew Cations from Melbourne and Peter Zybrands Sydney all Australia have all represented the club in the new league and contributed very well indeed.

 

In particular Peter Zybrands who smashed a club record and scored the highest score of the 2006 season with an unbeaten 176.

 

We have great optimism and confidence that the future will be as promising and successful as the past has been. None of the foregoing would have been possible without the dedication and commitment of successive Management Committees whose Officers and members, including many ladies, have helped to forge a sporting and community spirit second to none.......long may it continue

© 2019 by BSMCC.

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