The Lee Cricket Club

Playing cricket in the cricket ground at The Lee Manor Park
The Lee cricket ground in the Manor Park

The Lee Cricket Club has its own website where up to date information on contacts and fixtures can be found.

The club combines Saturday league cricket with traditional friendly games played on Sundays. In 2014 they joined the Morrant Chiltern League and the First XI now play in Division 1 and the Second XI in Division 2.

In addition to senior cricket, the club also runs a hugely successful colts section, with members attending either Friday night softball training or Saturday morning hardball sessions. For both boys and girls, the aim is to introduce children at an early age to the game of cricket and develop their skills all the way through their teen years and into adulthood.

Colt's cricket, with a young batsman ready to strike

A brief history of the Club

The first recorded cricket match on the Lee Manor Park ground was on 2nd May, 1875, when The Lee Common Amateur Cricket Club hosted a match against local Rivals Prestwood. The Newspaper report began as follows:

“the first match of the L.C.A.C. club was played on Monday last, and a well contested game took place, with eleven members of the Prestwood Cricket Club, in the park of A. Watson, Esq., Lee, kindly lent by that gentleman for the occasion. The Result was a complete victory for the home team…”

In fact the “complete victory”, in a match played, like most of the early games, over two innings, consisted of a win by just 13 runs.

The club’s “modern” history dates from 1900, when local boundaries were altered and the club adopted it present name. In that year the Liberty family took up residence in the parish and began to play an active part in the cricket club.

Members of The Lee Cricket Club
Members of The Lee Cricket Club

This photo of The Lee Cricketers in front of the Guild Room is difficult to date but around the time of the First World War, The headteacher, E Young is standing centre with a cigarette. Far right, also with cigarette in superior blazer is probably Teulon Sonnenschein (later Stalybrass).

The ground was enhanced by landscaping and the planting of several magnificent trees and the Club’s facilities were gradually improved. In the early days the players changed into their cricket clothes in the open air. Eventually a wooden hut was erected. Later, the village Guild Rooms were used for changing and refreshment. In 1974 the club artisans built the present pavilion.

One of the most significant developments in recent years has been a dramatic improvement in the quality of the square. In the club’s early days a total of more than 50 was quite exceptional; today, totals of over 200 are commonplace. Pitches at The Lee are now among the best in the Chilterns.

Another significant change came in 1999 when, following many years of discussion, the club played league cricket for the first time. The decision to combine Saturday league cricket with traditional timed games played on Sundays stemmed from the increasing difficulty of obtaining good quality Saturday fixtures and – equally important – the belief that league cricket would help to attract younger players and to raise playing standards.