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Over the years almost every famous cricketer that has ever lived has played in the Scarborough Festival either as an invited member of an MCC side, a Gentlemen’s side, a Players side or as part of visiting national touring side.

The two who stand out are W.G.Grace and Don Bradman.

Grace first played at Scarborough in 1870 at Castle Hill in a United South XI.

He has scored two centuries at the Festival, the first of them being remarkable in that he scored 174 out of a team total of 263 for the Gentleman’s XI of 1885. The Gentlemen went on to win this match which was the first Gentlemen v Players fixture at Scarborough and was played annually until 1962 when the distinction between Gentlemen and Players was removed from Cricket. In the Final match Ken Barrington scored a hundred and the Players won.

Don Bradman played in three Festivals, the first in 1930 on what was his first tour of England.

In a letter he wrote recalling that Festival he described the great honour he felt to have witnessed the last match that Wilfred Rhodes played before he retired from first class cricket.

The year he is best remembered for is 1934 when he scored 304 at Leeds in just one day. Later that season he was at Scarborough playing for the Australians against Levison- Gower’s XI. He came to the wicket about twenty minutes into the morning at 14 for 1 and was out stumped off Verity for 132 before lunch. 14,000 people were in the Ground to watch him.

He didn’t play in the 1938 Festival through injury and then the War intervened. He was next in Scarborough during his last tour in 1948 and as captain of Australia.

He scored 153 as his farewell innings and had the honour of being made a Life member of Yorkshire CCC.

Clearing Trafalgar Square End

Only three times in the History of Cricket at North Marine Road has a ball been hit out of the Ground, clean over the houses and into Trafalgar Square.

The three "big hitters" were:

  • C.I. Thornton in 1875
  • G.F. Wells-Cole in 1901
  • C.G. Pepper in 1945

There are one or two conflicting stories about exactly where the ball crossed into the square in each case but it is generally accepted that all three did. Many others have claimed the feat but some have hit chimney pots and others gone through the gap.

In his biography Lord Hawke stated: At Scarborough I was in the field to the biggest hit I ever saw C.I.Thornton make. Buns helped himself to 107 runs in just over an hour. His mightiest slog was from the Pavilion end when he drove the ball straight over the screen, so high that it hit a chimney on the roof of one of the houses outside the ground.

This report was confirmed in a letter to the Scarborough Mercury published in 1921 from Fredrick Andrews who became Headmaster of the Quaker School at Ackworth and witnessed it as a Scarborough player on the field at the time.

G.F. Cole –Wells is the least well known of the three although his reputation was widespread around Lincolnshire. He played for Lincolnshire, MCC and I Zingari.

In August 1901 playing as a guest for Scarborough against Gentlemen of Yorkshire, he made 387 runs in four and a half hours. Included was the six into Trafalgar Square. The hit was witnessed by Harry Leadbetter, one of Scarborough’s best left-handed batsmen, who reported in a newspaper article that Wells-Cole made an on drive which rose six or seven feet over the house tops with a clear drop into the Square. Harry Leadbetter also witnessed the Thornton six and claimed the Wells-Cole six was higher and bigger.

The third of the big hitters is Ces Pepper, an Australian all-rounder who played for the Australian Services against Levison-Gowers XI in September 1945. In the match he scored 168 runs in the Services first innings and took six wickets over two innings as they won by an innings.

When the big hit came Eric Hollies was the bowler and Keith Miller was batting at the other end. According to Pepper Arthur Wood who was keeping wicket bet him a bottle of whisky that he could not hit one over the houses.

The Scarborough Festival

Since 1876, with only the exception of war years, there has been a Cricket Festival played at Scarborough at the end of the first class season.

2014 will see the 128th Festival and attendances in recent years, especially 2011, have been excellent. There is still the relaxed holiday feel around the ground, including the band, and players and spectators alike love to take part.

The seeds of the Scarborough Festival had been sown at Castle Hill. Many of the visitors to Victorian Scarborough were both wealthy and cricket lovers and matches at Castle Hill could attract crowds in excess of 2000.

In 1875 Lord Londesborough agreed to sponsor a match between MCC and Yorkshire. The MCC side was put together by C.I. (Charles Inglis) Thornton, an MCC member and a regular visitor to Scarborough. MCC were enthusiastic which is not surprising as Sir Charles Legard Bt. was the MCC President in 1875 and a good friend of Lord Londesborough.

The following year, 1876, when Lord Londesborough himself became MCC President, the Cricket programme at Scarborough was extended to nine days and the main match was again MCC v Yorkshire with MCC managed by C.I.Thornton. This was the first Scarborough Festival.

In 1898 the Scarborough Mercury recalled: It was Lord Londesborough who made the Scarborough Festival possible. He brought here for many years the Gentlemen players and at his own expense entertained them. Those he was unable to entertain at Londesborough Lodge he provided for in hotels and even went as far as keeping a house in The Crescent especially for the use of Cricketers

Historical Landmarks

Date Historical Landmark
1849 Club founded based at Castle Hill
1863 Secured tenacy of North Marine Road
1876 Cricket Festival started soon attracted players like W.G.Grace
1887 Scarborough XI played MCC at Lords
1895 New pavilion built at a cost of £2,150
Club applied to Yorkshire CCC for a county match to be played at Scarborough
1896 First county match played... Yorkshire vs Leicestershire
1914 War... festival abandoned
1926 Festival Jubilee. Banquet at Grand Hotel
1939 War... festival cancelled
1945 Australian Cec Pepper joins W.G.Grace as one of only three to hit a ball over the boarding houses into Trafalgar Square... also the last to achieve this
1972 Scarborough Club wins National Knockout at Lords and goes on to win it 5 times in total... the only club in the country to achieve this many wins
1999 Club celebrates 150 years and 113th Festival.

100 Club

Give yourself a chance to win £50 every month!

£2 donation per month - help maintain the ground at North Marine Road

  1. All profits will be put towards Ground renovation and maintenance.
  2. Membership of the 100 Club is restricted to members of Scarborough Cricket Club.
  3. Payment of a monthly donation of £2 entitles each member to be allocated one number in the monthly and quarterly draw.
  4. The monthly prizes will be £50; £20 and £10. The additional quarterly prize will be £50
  5. The number of entries sold shall be at the discretion of the committee.
  6. The value of the prizes may be amended in relation to the number of entries sold but the maximum aggregate prize money shall not exceed 50% of the total annual donations
  7. Any member may purchase more than one entry.

Following our extensive refurbishment in 2011, Scarborough Cricket Club is drawing in over 30,000 people through the turnstiles each year. We are extremely proud of the facilities and opportunities we are able to offer to our local community and beyond.

With good footfall and excellent local press and television coverage, especially during the prestigious Welcome to Yorkshire Cricket Festival, where better to advertise your company name to a captive audience?

Scarborough Cricket Club offer an extensive range of commercial opportunities from perimeter board advertising to the sampling of products, and match ball sponsorship.

We are looking for businesses to become involved with the Club as sponsors or advertisers. With excellent benefits and advertising opportunities on offer, there's never been a better time to join us.

The sponsorship opportunities we can offer are:

  • Club Match Ball Sponsor - with recognition on our website and through social media platforms
  • Club Match Day Sponsor - with recognition on our website and through social media platforms
  • Sponsorship of Covers - Our mobile covers comprise of 3 separate units. Sponsorship can be all three units, or just one. We are happy to discuss coverage. 
  • Senior Cricket Shirt Sponsor
  • Junior Cricket Shirt Sponsor
  • Product Sampling - With audiences often reaching over 5000 for a days play (6/7 hour) a number of companies have taken advantage of the opportunity to 'sample' goods or products within the ground.


If you're interested or would like to find out more please contact Rochelle Cammish at Scarborough Cricket Club.

Phone: 01723 365625 or email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We have a number of options available for advertisement opportunities

  •  Perimeter Boards - which come in 2 sizes, 6000mm x 750mm & 8000mm x 750mm. Please contact the club for prices, please note manufacturing of the board is not included in the price.
  • Scorecards - the scorecard reach around 3000+ each county fixture, and is a perfect way to advertise your business if you are on a budget
  •  Annual Report - distributed to all the club members

If you are interested and would like to know prices, please contact Rochelle at Scarborough Cricket Club. Phone: 01723 365625 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Please see images below for examples of perimeter boards.

Scarborough’s Cricket Heritage

The Scarborough Cricket Club was founded in 1849 and the first recorded match was played on Castle Hill. Matches in the early years continued to be played on Castle Hill.

The Club was reconstituted in 1863 and the tenancy of a field on North Marine Road was obtained.

Matches have been played there since then and the Ground was purchased in 1878 at a cost of £3,500 from Mr John Woodall.

The first Scarborough Festival was held in 1876 when MCC beat Yorkshire by seven wickets and with the exception of the War years has continued to be an annual event, the 126th Festival will be held in 2012.

Ground Improvements 2011

The Funding Agreement with Welcome to Yorkshire continued in 2011 which enabled improvements to be made. These included air conditioning in the press box, new bar shutters, the replacement of the grey seats with white in the Trafalgar Square Enclosure, safety gates at the back of the West Stand, new catering equipment, new sightscreens, nets, sheets and practice equipment, new mower, top dresser and ground equipment as well as display cabinets and lighting equipment. Grateful thanks to Welcome to Yorkshire which enabled all these purchases to be made.

The most significant improvements however came with Tesco Community Project, when Tesco and its partners undertook a three month project which transformed and/or improved virtually every area of the ground. The major work was in the Pavilion which was totally gutted and then saw the creation of a new cellar area, the installation of a lift to all floors, the levelling of the Pavilion Lounge with a new bar and an additional exit to the Pavilion Enclosure, total refurbishment and redecoration, new carpets, curtains, tables and chairs throughout and the refurbishment of the toilets.

The Lean-to bar area was refitted, a new shop was built for major match days and the adjacent toilet block was demolished and rebuilt. The Tea Room returned to one large unit, redecorated and refurbished along with the creation of a new balcony area with tables and chairs. New bench seating was fitted on the Popular Bank and the best of the old wood used in the West Stand. All toilet blocks had varying amounts of work done in them. Both scoreboards have new fascia. The traditional railings were restored in the Pavilion enclosure.

See Also: Ground Development

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Scarborough Cricket Club was founded in 1849 when the first cricket matches were played on Castle Hill; the ground today at North Marine Road, is second only in capacity cricket to the Test Match venues.

The Club runs seven teams, Under 11’s, under 13's and 2 Under 15’s in the Derwent Valley Junior League, the 3rd XI in the Beckett League, the 2nd XI in the York and District Senior League and the 1st XI in the Yorkshire ECB County Premier League.

When Scarborough are playing at home the Pavilion bar will be open at 12.30 for members and public alike; afternoon teas will be served. So come along, watch some cricket and relax.

North Marine Road hosts Yorkshire County Cricket Club for a number of four day and one day matches (including the Scarborough Cricket Festival  in the 128th year in 2014. 

Scarborough Cricket Club welcomes new cricket players of all ages. Our Club Cricket Manager Neil Elvidge  oversees all coaching and cricket development.

We aim to be a friendly club - the club of choice for all players who wish to reach their full potential.

There are several qualified coaches including Mark Welford who oversees the Juniors. Various Cricket Coaching Schemes include the Bill Foord Scheme for development of selected players.

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