SO IT BEGAN ……So reads the first recorded reference to Hornchurch Cricket in the Original Chelmsford Chronicle, price 3 pence, dated Friday August 22nd, 1783.
"On Tuesday the 26th instant a match of cricket will be played at Mrs. Barkers at the Green Man Navestock between the "Gentlemen of Hornchurch and Ingatestone for one Guinea per man. Wicket is to be pitched at ten o’clock."
No actual results exist for this match, but cricket is still played opposite the Green Man at Navestock. It is known that the club was playing regularly and winning games by the following year, and by the middle of the 18th century, cricket was beginning to establish itself as a major sport in England.
The first home of the newly formed cricket club was Langtons Park which within fifty years was destined to entertain the MCC and to become a notable focus for local and regional attention.
The 1800’s saw the golden era of cricket at the club with an unbeaten run of seven years, ending in 1829. In 1889 the club ground was at Grey Towers Park where they played until the outbreak of war in 1914. The pitch was used during the Great War for Army billeting, and could not be restored at the end of hostilities, so a field in Wingletye Lane was used until 1925 when the club was offered a ground in front of Fairkytes, Billet Lane, now the Queens Theatre. The local council had plans for the local area, and in 1947 the club was offered a new pitch at Harrow Lodge, and this is where it still resides to this day.
CLUB OBJECTIVESTo provide a friendly club environment for people to play cricket at all levels.
To maintain and improve the quality of the playing and training facilities.
To maintain and improve the facilities available to players, officials and all our visitors.
To assist in the improvement of all players’ cricketing ability.
To encourage young people to play cricket through the CRICKET FOR ALL programme.
To develop cricket in our local community.
To assist with the development of cricket with the Essex County Cricket Board.