Cricket Team in Leeds, LS15 9AL
We are a club based on the East side of Leeds and play in the Aire-Wharfe Cricket League.
We have three teams (1st & 2nd teams who play Saturdays and a 3rd XI who play Sundays). We also run junior team from under 11 to under 15 age groups and are constantly looking for new players of all ages to bring on in the game. The social scene is also thriving at the club with a good selection of drinks available, Sky Sports also available with a variety of sporting events on show in the club, Tuesday night Quiz Night and many other events held at the club (weekday hours 20:00-23:30, open afternoons on weekends too (from about 13:00)).
For more than a hundred years, cricket has been representative of the hamlet-cum-village of Colton, the roots of which have recently been traced back to the early years of this millennium by the discovery of an excavated site (circa 1100). Until comparatively recent years, the inhabitants of the village were mainly employed in agriculture and local mining under the patronage of the Templenewsam Estate. The Cricket Club owes its existence to the village institute, first formed when the schoolhouse was built in 1872, and becoming more permanently established some years later in its present buildings.
Cricket was first played in a field opposite Colton Mill at the junction of Bullerthorpe Lane and Selby Road. The club moved to its present site in School Lane during the early 1920s, for which the proverbial peppercorn rent was paid. In 1924 the ground was purchased from Lord Halifax for the princely sum of £104. 1s. 3d. to be followed by the acquisition of adjoining land for a football field. A considerable amount of work was then carried out on the cricket field, including the levelling of the ground with soil carted from the nearby Halton Ring Road excavations. A local benefactor contributed substantially towards the cost of the ground and sports pavilion.
Originally known as Swillington United, the club was a founder member of the SagarMusgrave Challenge Cup Competition which it won in 1893. The following season saw the introduction of league cricket as members of the newly formed Barkston Ash League. In 1949 the club transferred to the Leeds and District League, winning the First XI Championship in 1951. Over the years Colton has produced many prominent players, including those who have enjoyed the privilege of playing for Yorkshire.
Colton has always been a family club, no doubt due to the earlier years when so many players and members were products of the village school, and the cricket field was used for local sporting occasions and as a school sports field. The family connection continues to be a prominent feature of the club, emphasized in recent years by the presence of seven pairs of brothers, and also two fathers, playing in the three Saturday teams.
During the last 12 years, in keeping with these more modern times, the cricket ground has improved considerably. The old pavilion, demolished after more than half a century of invaluable service, has been replaced by more permanent buildings, including a social club which has superseded the village institute as the Cricket Club’s parent body. Appropriately, performances in the field have matched this improvement, with four First XI Championships during the same period, plus Hepworth Cup success in 1984. The invitation to stage three Hepworth Cup Finals is pleasing evidence of the widespread recognition brought about by recent progress. The ground’s facilities now include football, tennis and bowls, thus fulfilling the objectives formulated by the club’s early members.
Undoubtedly the zenith of the club’s achievement came in 1990 when Colton reached the last four out of 639 entries in the National Village Competition. Of the 13 selected players, 11 were products of previous junior teams. The same year the under 15s won three local trophies, amply justifying the continued encouragement given by Colton to its younger members.
The future of Colton Cricket Club is viewed with considerable confidence. More affluent times, coupled with major building developments in the village, can only lead to increasing prosperity, especially when compared with the difficult times faced by the club’s earlier members. Every generation has produced its own benefactors, workers and players of note, and for this reason it is deemed unfair to single out for special mention the individual contributions made by so many devoted and committed members, all of whom are deeply appreciated.
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