A Review of the 1948 Season



In 1948 Harold Pryor performed a feat unique to the Club when he took all ten wickets in the 2nd XI match v Red Triangle at Forest Side, returning the remarkable figures of 19.1o 3m 44r 10w which have never been beaten in a Chingford match to this day.


The  Guardian’s pre-season preview reported that:


Little change in the playing strength of Chingford Cricket Club is announced for the first match of the season away to Walthamstow CC on Saturday. Chingford’s second string entertain the Walthamstow second team, play starts 2.30pm

There has been much activity at Chingford’s Forest Side ground during the past few weeks. A new sight screen has been provided, and a much needed concrete matting-covered practice wicket has been laid.

Supervised practice has been organised for almost every evening.

After holding the captaincy for nearly 20 years, Mr Gordon Downes has retired from office, but will still play regularly.

The full fixture lists includes matches for three Xis every Saturday until the end of the season on September 26th. Matches have also been arranged for every Sunday during the season including three of special note. The first of these will be on Sunday 20th, when an Essex County XI visits in aid of TH Wades’ benefit. Wades will himself captain the side. (Result: Chingford 193, Essex 259-6)

The second big match will be on Sunday, July 11th when Wellingborough Priory travel from Northamptonshire to play an all-day game for the groundsman’s benefit. (Result: Chingford 252-9 dec, Wellingborough Priory 186-7)

On Sunday August 15th the London Australians will visit Chingford, when it is hoped that at least two of the Australian Test Cricketers will appear. Proceeds of this game will go towards ground improvements.

The club is particularly happy about the long-term lease offered by Chingford Council for the Forest Side Ground which will ensure cricket there for many years.

Potential new members can contact the new Hon. Secretary, Mr A E Culpin 10 Higham Station Avenue E4, successor to Mr J W A Jessop, who piloted the club through the difficult war years.


The Eastern Mercury reported in their 22 June 1948 edition:


In a brief ceremony during the course of Chingford Cricket Club’s match with Edmonton at Forest Side on Saturday, The Mayor of Chingford (Councillor AH Hart JP) formally opened the new clubhouse in the scoreboard corner of the ground. President of the Club Mr JJ Church handed the key to the Mayor who remarked that the Club had been in existence for 60 years and wished it further success for another 60 years.


On the field , results were poor with the 1st XI winning only two games from 20 despite over 1000 runs from Bill Sharnock and 950 from Cliff Crafer , including a brilliant 114* in a win over Walthamstow.

Other notable performances came from Bill Sharnock with 106 v Wellingborough Priory and Bunny Swinfen with 101 v Wanstead and 100 v Highgate, while with the ball Harold Pryor took 7-22 v Wanstead 2nds and Dick Wray captured 7-80 for the As v Highams Park.


Sunday B fixtures resumed in 1948, albeit on a limited basis, with 5 games on the fixture card.


Summarising the season Buddy Jessop’s scrapbook reported:


1948 was marred by the fact that I had to give up cricket quite a time before the end of the season owing to a damaged finger caused by “practice” with K Biddulph. I played 6 more games this year and had a much better showing in all games. I played regularly for the 2nd XI and quite a few games for the Firsts and I usually opened the bowling. I tended towards bowling more than batting. Averages aren’t quite so good but took nearly twice as many wickets


At the Players Meeting in October Eric Grey expressed the view that the Club should devise ways and means whereby the old traditions of the Club of going for the runs might be recaptured.


The 1948 AGM saw Gordon Downes offering the congratulations of the Club to Ken Biddulph and Bernard Earl following their selection by the Evening News as colts bowlers. This was a national scheme to find a squad of young cricketers good enough to play representative cricket. This marked the beginning of an illustrious career for Ken.


The General Committee Minutes of 14 May 1948 reported :


The Secretary submitted to the Committee an estimate from the Eastern Electricity Board for the installation of lighting points and one power point. The Committee accepted the tender and the Secretary was instructed to give the Board instructions to proceed. (The supply was to be passed to the pavilion via the house of a member, Mr Ashley of 14 Faversham Avenue.)


An important step towards the raising of funds was taken in 1948, when a bar was opened, which showed a healthy profit of £40 after five weeks trading.


In September the Club wrote to the Borough Engineer stating it was proposed to make a footpath from the entrance to the ground near the Queen Elizabeth Hotel to the clubhouse in the ground in view of the difficulty in crossing the ground in wet weather and asking whether the Council would be prepared to give them any assistance in the matter. A compromise was reached as the Club supplied the labour and the Council the hard-core, which came from Pimp Hall.


Similarly in December a project to paint the interior of the tea pavilion saw the Council provide the materials at a cost of £15 and the Club the labour.