Background and History

Special thanks and acknowledgements

40 Years on and moving forward – The best of both Worlds

How to access the Journals

Background and History

Cheltenham Cricket Society was founded in 1983 to promote meetings and other activities of interest to cricket lovers in the Cheltenham area. It was Nigel Cooke, a founding member, the first secretary and from 1990 its energetic chairman until his death in 2005, who insisted that a record be maintained of the speakers and key events in our society. 

In the early days photographs were taken using film cameras and flashguns. Once developed the best of those photographs were mounted carefully in the hand bound journals. Guest pen portraits were typewritten on green paper and complimented the fine calligraphy and on occasions line drawings.

As with any treasured family album the Cheltenham Cricket Society journals have grown over time and now contain a vast treasure trove of images and narrative from the last 40 years. The journals provide a lasting record of the many greats of the game who have enthralled and entertained members and graced the Victory Club stage. In so doing, the journals continue to fulfil Nigel Cookes’ ambition from the outset.

Special thanks and acknowledgements

Over the years, the journals have been meticulously updated and maintained in pristine condition by our members for which the Society is grateful. Initially, John Buswell together with Aylwin Sampson created fine calligraphy for the page caption headings and also selected and mounted the photographs.

Many thanks also to Eric Stokes, Rob Wheatman and now Pete Wilson for the excellent photographs they have taken over the years and which bring life to the journals. Committee members have also on occasion volunteered to take photographs if the main photographers were unavailable. This helps explains variations in photographic styles and maybe why some guest photographs are missing.

The Society is also grateful for the efforts of Paddy Murphy (one of the very first members of our Society), who as a Committee member continues to be responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the Society library and journals. 

40 years on and moving forward – the best of both Worlds

The journals have always been made available during guest speaker events for perusal and browsing by members and this tradition will continue. 

However, 40 years on from the initial founding of the Society, the committee have agreed that now is the time to allow the journals to be made available digitally on our website. This will ensure that members can peruse the journals at their leisure but also give access to a wider audience of cricket lovers and enthusiasts. 

Just as importantly, if not more, as the original negatives of the photographs are no longer available, scanning, capturing and storing digital files of the the journal pages and photographs will help us to retain a record of precious pre digital images. If we did not do this the invaluable images and pages of the journals will inevitably deteriorate over time. 

It must be said however, that a scanned image, appearing on a website and accessed on a computer, phone or tablet screen will never capture the look, feel, smell and tactile pleasure of the physical journals and the original images. For that reason, we encourage you to check out the original journals when you get an opportunity at a Society meeting.

Finally, Paddy Murphy has said that the most common comment he hears from members who are new to the journals and see them for the first time is how they can’t believe the variety and iconic nature of the guest speakers our Society has had. Visitors to our website and members (new and existing) can share in that emotion when they revisit or see for the first time those wonderful pages and images of our guests over the years. 

How to access the journals

Please click on the sub menu options for Journal # 1 (1983-2007), Journal #2 (2007-2013) or Journal #3 (2013-2023) in the main menu. Alternatively click on the button links below.

Additional journals will be made available on our website when the respective scanning and digitisation is completed . 

Please do pass on any feedback to any of the committee members or click on the following link to e:mail our webmaster directly.