Ickwell Cricket Club will
celebrate 175 years with a game of cricket and various other attractions.
The event, which will take place on Sunday, September 7 from 1pm will feature Victorian attractions, steam engines, costume cricket matches, a bar with refreshments and a Punch and Judy show.
The aim is to replicate some of the events that formed part of the first game played against Old Warden in 1839.
The club found out they were almost 50 years older than had been previously thought.
In December last year a newspaper cutting from the Beds Mercury and Huntingdon Express of August 17, 1839 came to light.
The report said: “A match of Cricket was played at Ickwell Green, on Friday 2nd August, between eleven gents of the Parish of Warden, and eleven of the Parish of Northill; the weather being fine, and this the first match played on Ickwell Green.”
The newspaper report shows the match caused a great deal of interest and excitement amongst the local villagers as well as the local gentry.
Mentioned in the reports are the Ongley family who had owned the Old Warden Estate since the late 17th century.
The article was originally given to Peter Onion by Ian Willis of Old Warden Cricket Club.
One of the Northill players is believed to be an ancestor of Neville Course who was a well-known local cricketer who played for Ickwell and captained the Millman winning sides in the 1980s.
He was also a correspondent for the Biggleswade Chronicle.
During the celebration day there will be two games of cricket both played in period dress – a ladies match between the Tea Ladies of Ickwell and Old Warden ladies and a men’s match between them as well.
Refreshments available on the day will include a hog roast and cream teas in keeping with the Victorian theme.
The event will be free although a collection box will go round and the club will appreciate any donations made.