History of a Sunday cricket club

 

The creation of Broadway Cricket Club was the brainchild of two National Westminster Bank Messengers - John Hunt and Dave Tanner back in 1981 . Dave's elder brother Mick got involved in discussions and the three of them began the process of getting the club off the ground. In 1986, prior to the Clubs first Tour to Southampton in 1986, Mick penned the following piece setting out the birth of the Club.

 

Broadway Cricket Club the birth and growth

 " .....................One balmy day in late summer in 1981 a conversation was taking place almost certainly in an establishment purveying of alcoholic beverages and associated products. The two people concerned, one young [Dave Tanner] the other young at heart [John Hunt], were discussing sport, in fact the particular sport of cricket. Both being unsatisfied, some would say totally pissed off, with the cricket available to them at the time, considered their respective futures in the art of meeting leather and willow. A germ or perhaps a spark of an idea germinated or indeed sparkled ? their own cricket team!! This immediately appeared the best idea that probably either or maybe both of them had ever had. It seemed such a good idea that they then immediately sobered up and gave practical consideration to it.

The result of their procrastinations was that more than two people had to be involved, at least eleven at the end of the day. However a third person, let's call him - Third Man [Mick Tanner] as this is a widely accepted cricket term, was considered first to undertake the paperwork. Not only is Third Man a widely accepted expression but a totally misunderstood one as most players when told they are Third Man wonder how they can be batting at No. 3 when they are at present fielding. Best stop - this is a roll mop or a red herring and nothing to do with the text.

Third Man being of sound mind and an absolute realist (some would use the term pessimist) said  I don't think it can work! Not enough people with enough enthusiasm. Third Man was wrong and not for the first or last time. He then set conditions that "Young" and "Young at Heart" at least did something constructive to show that this still appeared a good idea in the cold or even not so cold., being summer light of day. Then there was a pause. It was not a long pause for "Young at Heart" having been involved for a year or two or three or four etc. in cricket then proceeded to book a number of pitches at a park in sunny Sydenham for the summer of 1982 and at the same time join the Club Cricket Conference. "Third Man" was then presented with various bits of paper resulting from "Young at Hearts" endeavours and a list of more than eleven people some of whom were known, having a very familiar name and others foreign to "Third Man" and probably everyone else with names like Caridad, Petrozzi and Arpino.

There followed a meeting and a cricket club was born.

The name, nothing original, Catford and Broadway CC, the name of an infamous 5 a-side football team Catford and the Broadway's  (itself based on the Ian Drury band name - Kilburn and the High Roads).

From birth the Club has grown and grown quickly (what do they put in Farley's Rusks these days). Dropping Catford from the Club name to avoid confusion with lesser clubs in the district was the next evolutionary event. As the Club has grown, so have the people who make up the club. Now instead of 10 games as in the first year being played in a wide variety of cast offs, some of which could pass for white, an immaculate team of articulate young men grace the field for approximately 24 games a season.

The introduction of two Civil Servants - Chris Shaw & Rory MacNeill - though not always civil if an LBW decision is given either by or against them, both these newcomers have been very good additions to the Club, on and off the field. One original member has arisen again like the veritable Phoenix (if phoenix my pint I'll kill him) to play regularly and so far we've been able to Scotch rumours of Brandi being selected for England duty, as it would be a rum do to deprive us of his services. Enough of this I hear you cry?

But with all thanks to the members of Broadway Cricket Club for your support and assistance.

FROM YOUNG AT HEART - Chairman, John Hunt

YOUNG - Captain, Dave Tanner; and

THIRD MAN - Secretary, Mick Tanner.............................."


by Mick Tanner 

_____________________________

 

 

The EARLY and LATER years

 

The Clubs first two seasons were spent playing in Mayow Park, Sydenham in the London Borough of Lewisham. The changing rooms had plenty of splinters in the floor with no showers either and the pitch was not up to scratch most of the time. There was often a 15 a-side football match taking place alongside the boundary for 2-3 hours resulting in footballs on the pitch, people walking behind the bowlers arm. Not to mention kids on bikes and dogs racing across the outfield. However most of our young team knew no different so we just got on with it; and anyway Anne Hunt's cream scones at tea made up for these inconveniences, prior to drinking in the Dolphin pub on Sydenham High Street (now a gastro pub !!).

The team for the very first game played against Grenfell CC in batting order was as follows -

Ian Thurman, John Hunt; John Styles; Dave Tanner; Mick Tanner; Russell Bussey; John Chadwick; Glenn Hunt; Tony Arpino; Steve Tanner; Mark Tanner.

The game was lost but cricket ultimately was the winner!

 

[ Since 2014 Mayow Park has seen the re-emergence of cricket with the help of ECB funding which is great to see  - Cricket at Mayow Park, Sydenham  ]

 

With a desire for a better pitch and surroundings the Club moved in 1984 to Waring Park, Sidcup in the London Borough of Bexley. There was a spell when we had to split our home games between two grounds. Only a good 6 hit away, King George's Fields was our other home ground. The changing rooms at Waring Park are still as they were when we moved in 1984 and are recently a regular topic of conversation, particularly as the boilers for the showers are non-existent due to regularly being stolen! But then again some of us never bothered with showers anyway!

Unappreciated by some of our newer players Waring Park was the subject of a proposal to move to a private club ground  and with a split vote and a heavy heart we moved again to the Old Shootershillians Club ground in Kidbrooke,  (despite most of those voting for a move of grounds no longer playing for us!) but dont start me off on that again.

 

However, nothing stays the same they say and its true with Broadway CC. Because as from the 2016 season BCC have moved home grounds and now will play at Orpington CC's ground at Westcombe Park RFC. Looking for better surroundings and a more consistent pitch were the drivers for the move. That and the cheeky price rise that Shootershillians CC wanted to charge us !

 

 

 

Broadway CC Tours

One feature that has always been good fun has been the Tour. Since its inception in 1986 we have travelled all around the country mostly playing in a different location each time. Apart from playing in some fantastically scenic and varied grounds most of the opposition have been extremely hospitable and a pleasure to play against. Even though in quite a few occasions we have been comprehensively outplayed the stories and experiences are usually relived in the bar after every game at some point. Coming up against overseas professionals and playing at Bath CC are two things coming to mind.

Should anyone from another cricket club manage to read this far and their own club does not tour , then I would urge them most strongly to "get touring".

I have every intention of adding some Tour score card links to this site sometime in the future.

 

Ian Thurman