Somerset Cricket Club remembers its roots

PUBLISHED: 12:29 06 September 2015

Chairman of the Sidmouth Cricket, Tennis and Croquet Club Neil Gamble (left) is pictured with groundsman Colin Whitehall and house and grounds chairman John Goodwin (right). Ref shsp 8423-35-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Chairman of the Sidmouth Cricket, Tennis and Croquet Club Neil Gamble (left) is pictured with groundsman Colin Whitehall and house and grounds chairman John Goodwin (right). Ref shsp 8423-35-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

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A county cricket club celebrating its 140th anniversary has marked the milestone by remembering its Sidmouth roots.

Somerset Cricket Club tweeted: “Today is our 140th birthday! #OnThisDay: 1875 the club formed after a match between Somerset Gentleman and the Gentleman of Sidmouth.”

The side triumphed when they played against the ‘Gentleman of Sidmouth’ on August 18, 1875, at The Fortfield.

When the club turned professional, it moved to Taunton and is one of 18 professional county teams.

Neil Gamble, chairman of Sidmouth Croquet, Tennis and Cricket Club, said: “The fact is Sidmouth is a very famous club. A lot of people know it for its beautiful ground and a lot of teams from around the country, and internationally, come here.

“We do cherish the connection and Sidmouth Cricket Club is very proud to be part of Somerset County Cricket Club’s history. Many members of the club are Somerset supporters - 140 years is a long connection.”

The CEO of Devon County Cricket Club said: “It is interesting for a first class team to originate in another county and we do remain very proud of the fact that the nearest fully professional side was actually formed in Sidmouth.”

A Somerset Cricket Club spokesman said: “We have always had strong links with Devon throughout the years and that remains to this day, with a strong contingent of Devon locals within our playing staff.”

Sidmouth Cricket Club has been playing at The Fortfield since 1823.

It was originally an artillery practice ground in the Napoleonic Wars before being converted to a cricket wicket.

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