Horsham Cricket Club

The history of HCC

The first recorded game of a town side was on the 5th August 1771 when 11 men of Horsham played 22 men of High Chiltington on Hurston Common near the village of West Chiltington.

The next recorded match took place in 1772 against Dorking on the Artillery Ground (later known as the Barrack Fields and now the home of Horsham Cricket Club). In the late 18th Century and early 1800s matches were also played at Denne Park and other grounds in Horsham.

In the early days of cricket temas were based upon the grounds of individual landowners and not clubs. The first direct evidence of a Horsham Cricket Club’ dates from 1840. In 1851, the Tredcroft family, who owned the Denne Park Field acquired the Barrack Fields and the new club was a great success.

The first County Cricket took place in August 1851, when the Gentlemen of Sussex played the Gentlemen of Surrey, while first class cricket came to Horsham in 1853, when Sussex played the first of three annual matches against the MCC.

The Tredcroft club didn’t last but a new club came to the Barrack Fields in May 1861 and may have been the commencement of the present Horsham CC.

The original pavilion was close to the present score-box but access became available from the Worthing Road around 1900 and the present pavilion was built in 1902/03, while the name ‘Cricketfield Road’ dates from the 1930s.

HCC team photo 1899

Three-day county championship cricket did not arrive until 1908 when Sussex played Essex at Horsham.

Ranji and Albert Relf batting at Horsham, Sussex v Essex 1908, © Wisden

In 1925 the Club bought the whole of the Barrack Fields and became a private club with the land held in Trust. In 1926, a portion between the railway and the footpath to Denne Hill was sold to the Council and is still known as the Barrack Field.

Also in 1926, the Horsham Rugby and Tennis Clubs became tenants. When the rugby club left in 1967, a new Horsham Hockey Club was set up from 1969.

In May 1971, the Club celebrated the Bicentenary of cricket in Horsham, when Sussex played Leicestershire in a Player’s League 40 over match

The 1970s saw the Colts’ Section become a major feature of cricket not only at Horsham but in Sussex. A square was developed on the second ground and called the ‘John Dew Ground’ after Dr John Dew, President from 1964 to 2008, and was used by the 3rd XI on Saturdays and the Horsham Caledonians on Sundays.

Dr Dew

In 1976, the various clubs amalgamated into the Horsham Sports Club (HSC) with a Main Club Committee, while each Section still had its own committee.

After a break from 1956 to 1976, one day County Cricket was played regularly again at Horsham from 1977, and, from 1983, there was a full return of County Championship cricket.

2001 saw the formation of a women’s cricket section

On the 23rd August 2005, the Men’s 1st XI won the National Cockspur Cup Final on a memorable day at Lord’s.