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The early days
The history of Seaton Carew Cricket Club is a long one. Founded in 1829 and playing on the Snook Field, newspaper articles of the time, highlighted annual games against Greatham and teams travelling, sometimes by boat, as far away as Whitby and Redcar, which was no mean feat in those days!
Interestingly, even as early as 1882, Seaton Carew Cricket Club recognized the value of developing young people when it ran its first-ever (friendly) junior side.
The club played mostly friendly cricket until entering the NYSD in 1903, this sadly was relatively short-lived due to the defection of 3-4 key players to the newly opened Park Drive (West Hartlepool) Cricket Club. So in 1911, the club withdrew from the NYSD due to a badly weakened team. For 51 years SCCC was left in the cricket wilderness.
Finally, in 1962 the club, after countless applications, was re-elected into the NYSD, finishing its first season in a highly commendable 3rd place out of 24 clubs. In 1963 the club had developed its first junior NYSD XI supporting the early belief of developing young players as a key to the future of the club.
“The juniors are the team of the years ahead” Derek Hornby (1965)
It was always recognised that to become a truly sustainable cricket club, a new and improved ground and clubhouse was needed. A key player, instrumental in ensuring this happened was the then Secretary Derek Hornby, ably assisted by an enthusiastic committee. On 19th February 1973, the hard work of the loyal committee, wives and players paid off and the new clubhouse was officially opened over the road at Petrus Park (later renamed Hornby Park in recognition of the two Hornby brothers)
With the move to the new ground came a new ambition of getting into the then NYSD A division (now the Premier Division). To help achieve this dream the new chairman Tom Foster worked tirelessly to make the wicket one of the very best in the area, in readiness for top tier cricket. He also put in many hours coaching, mentoring and putting in place a positive environment for young players to thrive. Sadly, due to the then closed shop attitude of the existing A division clubs, promotion to the A division never happened, even after twice winning the league in the 1980’s. This treatment was not unique during this era, other B division clubs experienced similar barriers, prompting a movement for change.
Over the coming years there have been some consistently great players, two of the most notable being Claude Hornby and Martin Janes.
Claude (the brother of Derek), played for SCCC all of his playing life (1950’s up to 1986). A brilliant right hand bat and all round player, who scored over 20,000 runs, with 26 centuries, 15 of which were NYSD league centuries, a rare feat in his playing era. An outstanding captain, committee member and gentleman on and off the field. He is one of a few outstanding players who are mentioned in the NYSDL Hall of Fame.
Martin Janes developed under the coaching of Tom Foster and supported well on the field by Claude, was a memorable, left-handed, all-rounder. His quietly confident demeanor ensured massive success on the field. He achieved the honour of most centuries in a season (6) and in a career (18). Twice achieving over 1000 league runs in a season too (1984 & 1992)
In 2014, the dream of getting into the top (Premier) league was achieved; the current team has done well in maintaining a fairly strong position within this league for 4 years in a row.
Now being a multi-sport Club, the financial burden just to stay in existence is always a challenge, consequently finding professional players and coaches is often low on the priority list, therefore a policy of producing home grown talent is of key importance.
Currently, there are 5 junior sides and one of the latest compliments to the club is being granted (in 2018) the opportunity to run the Chance to Shine programme for 5-8 year olds. It has to be noted that without the dedicated work of the junior coaches, the club would not have such a strong developing side of juniors, with some notably outstanding young players showing great potential.
In the coming years the key aims of the club are to continue with the allstars programme to develop a strong (new) under 9’s team and to continue to train and develop parents as coaches. A growing link with a local community-coaching programme might also enable SCCC to seriously make inroads into developing girls cricket within the club.
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