Village Cricket


Village Cricket began in England during the medieval period but the earliest known reference concerns the game being played c.1550 by children on a plot of land at the Royal Grammar School, Guildford, Surrey. It began as a children’s game and was only later deemed suitable for adults. Originally, all cricketers were amateurs in the literal sense of the word. Local villagers would spend their evenings and weekends congregating together on the Village Green, where more military pursuits such as Archery had been practiced in earlier centuries. Often there would be fixtures against other local parishes. In the 17th Century it was known by every schoolboy in the South-East of England. Indeed schools led the way in the expansion of the sport, with members of the clergy and school teachers enthusiastically setting up new teams as they moved to pastures green.

Local villagers, such as ‘Silver Billy Beldham’ played cricket at the Green in Tilford after it was designated an open space for recreational purposes in 1853. The Cricket Club was formally opened in 1886, and it remains one of the most picturesque village cricket grounds, aided, no doubt, by the Barley Mow pub alongside!

Village Cricket
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