Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club
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Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club (often called Chester BH) is a cricket club that is based in Boughton, Chester, England. The club has 4 senior XI playing Saturday sides that compete in the Cheshire County Cricket League of which the 1st XI are in the Premier League.
- 1873 The first ever game at Boughton Hall - 20 May 1873.
- 1870s In the 1870s Boughton Hall was a large private house standing in spacious grounds. The owner of the time, Mr John Thompson acquired a taste for cricket on is scholastic travels which took him to Rossall School and then Cambridge. Thompson, upon his return, converted part of the ‘Hall’s grounds into a cricket field to which he invited friends to play, under his captaincy, as Boughton Hall Cricket Club. Early games were against local teams such as Eaton Park Club, 22nd regiment and Arnold House. Liverpool and Warrington also visited and played host to the ‘Hall but generally came second place to a club which was quickly established as the envy of the area. Even in these early days fixtures were commonplace against the likes of Huyton. Oxton, New Brighton and Birkenhead Park.
- 1880s In the 1880s the club, now run by a committee and levying subscriptions, went from strength to strength and began to run a second XI. At this time There was a Chester and District League which accommodated teams such as Tattenhall, Bunbury, Chester City, Saltney, Buckley, St Oswalds and Flint. Boughton Hall though played teams further afield and in 1887 the inaugural fixture against Neston was played.
- 1900 Fixtures played in 1900 included: Bootle, Neston, Western, Wrexham, Winnington Park, Warrington, Llandudno, Northern, Knutsford, Birkenhead Park, Eaton Park and Rock Ferry. Fixtures ran from April 28 to Sept 8.
- 1910 1910 saw the first County game in Chester. Cheshire stumbled to an ignominious defeat to Northumberland in what was described as ‘unkind weather’. In 1913 the club allowed Chester Nomads Football Club (founded in 1904) to make use of the fine facilities. The Nomads had previously had no permanent ground…hence the name! 1913 also saw the inception of the Boughton Hall KO. The first victors were “Land Valuation” who saw off the challenge of the “Prudential” to take the title which is still played for today. The War saw a major reduction in fixtures but club members were able to keep the ground in order so that in 1919, returning War Heroes could once more don the whites. Pre and post war the bothers Jones - LN and WE - dominated the scorecards of Boughton Hall and indeed Cheshire. There are many references in the Centenary book to centuries, hat tricks and even 10 wicket hauls. Not to mention 9 fors, county centuries etc. etc. These outstanding cricketers went on to play until 1939 and 1943 respectively.
- 1925 Post war cricket prospered, particularly at Boughton Hall, which saw the return of County cricket as well as its inception in the Liverpool and District Cricket Competition. Major ground development and the general growth of the club had seen a transformation from 'a rich man's club' to (in 1925) 'Boughton Hall Cricket Club Limited'. During the 20s, which are described as the halcyon days, the philosophy of the 1st XI was to score as many runs as possible - quickly and then bowl the opposition out. Tactics repeated by captains in latter years no doubt! With the Joneses, names like Pratt, Churton, Hack and Stockton coming to the fore the team swept all before them and indeed a match v Sefton in 1928 saw a remarkable crowd of over 5000 watching the carnage.
- 1930s The Boughton Hall Knockout was THE competition to be in if you were a local cricketer and crowds of over 1000 appeared to support their team. The trophy (still in use) dates from the 19th century and is the (then defunct) Chester and District Competition trophy.The club's success was mirrored between the wars by the 'superb condition of the ground' The man responsible was a certain 'Mac' MacGregor. His only mechanical aid was that of a horse! He also umpired, coached juniors and even turned our for the 'extra' XI on a Wednesday. Another character of the day was Alf Snape who was persuaded to umpire a match and found himself in that post for the next 33 years. He also took a leading role in fundraising and earned a reputation as an objective reporter of the club's deeds in the local press. The 1930s ended with the emergence of a new generation of Joneses. The local paper found that the collective noun for the clan should be a plague! Bill, Leslie, Brian and Bruce all appeared to occasionally make 6 joneses in the 1st XI. In September came the War and with it an era had ended as LN Jones played his last game.
- 1995 Jeffery Fleet has the 2nd best bowling average in the whole of the Liverpool competition, beaten by only C.Ambrose. 3rd place was W.Benjamin.
- 1996 13 year old Edward Roberts scored an unbeaten 109 for the 3B eleven against Sefton. He followed this up by taking 6 for 27 with a mixture of pace and leg spin. Sadly Edward retired the following year when he moved to a Kibbutz in Peru.
- 2000s History was recorded when R.D.J.Evans hit an unbeaten 218 against a Sun Do XI for the 2nd XI.
- 2000s History was recorded again when T.P.R.Evans took 4 stumpings in a 1st XI cup game as stand in wicket-keeping for Steve Ogilby.
- 2012 18 years since they first lifted the trophy, the 1st XI won the Cheshire cup for a second time against Hyde. Lee Dixon was MOTM with a fine knock of 93. The 1sts finished third in the Cheshire County League also this year.