BECKENHAM CRICKET CLUB 1926 – 1979
The Beckenham Cricket Club was founded in 1926 and existed until 1979, when because of a falling membership and increasing difficulty in fielding a Senior A Team, it amalgamated with the neighbouring Waltham Club who were facing similar problems. The new club is now known as the Southern Districts Cricket Club as a result of being the only club south of the railway tracks. It continues to use the picturesque Beckenham Park, Waltham Park and there facilities as its base.
On September 13th 1926, 15 enthusiastic local residents held an inaugural meeting at which the Beckenham Cricket Club was formed. That season 2 teams were entered in the City and Suburban Cricket Association’s 3rd Grade competition and such was the support for the Club, 5 teams were entered the following season. Generally throughout the life of the Club, 4 or 5 teams were maintained with the entries peaking at 6 teams in the 1958-59 season.
In the early days, the three wickets on the Park were cut by hand mowers, watered by means of water carried in kerosene tins from the ponds at the eastern end of the Park and rolled by a large 12 cwt (4man) concrete roller built by Mr. Bert Walker and other Club members. The 1928-29 season saw high pressure water laid on to the Park and following an approach to the Christchurch City Council, work was started on the erection of a suitable pavilion which would incorporate the needs of this progressive Club.
Voluntary labour was provided by the Club members, with the City Council contributing all the materials.
This splendid pavilion was completed in time for the opening of the 1930-31 season and with many additions and modifications is still carrying out its function today.
The 1928-29 season was also a highlight for the Club on the playing field as it won its first competition in the Senior A grade. Over the years a wonderful teams’ and club spirit was built up among the members and this was reflected in the outstanding results achieved on the playing fields.
In the 53 years of the Club’s existence a team was entered in the Senior A competition on 47 occasions. In all, the Beckenham Senior A team won the competition 20 times and was runner-up 15 times.
After World War 2, in the seasons from 1945-46 and including 1951-52 the Senior A teams were competition winners for 7 consecutive seasons.
In the other grades the Club recorded 19 completions won and the runner up position held on 20 occasions. This surely must be a proud record for any club to hold.
For many years, school boy cricket was fostered and encouraged for boys within and outside the Beckenham and South Christchurch area. Games were played on Saturday mornings and coaching and practise provided in the evenings. Many very good club players started their cricketing careers in this environment. Unfortunately for the Beckenham Club, too many of these lads were lost to other clubs after they completed secondary schooling.
As would be expected with the playing record it achieved, the Club provided a large proportion of representative players for the Association representative teams, as many as 10 achieving this honour in the
1954-55 season. Other milestones in the Club’s history were the Silver Jubilee celebrations held early in 1951 and the Golden Jubilee held during the 1975-76 season.
Tour to Australia -The highlights on this occasion were an organised tour by Club members to Australia, a Jubilee Dinner and Dance and a Past Vs Present Cricket Match. All of these events being well supported by both past and present Club members.
Over all these years the Beckenham Cricket Club was very fortunate to have a strong nucleus of dedicated members who gave unselfishly of their time and efforts to ensure the club maintained the highly respected place it held in the Suburban Cricket Association and as a sporting body in the suburb of
We now look forward continuing the story, maintaining the legacy and creating our own histories. Onward to the 2026 Centenary year..
If you would like to assist in developing the history of the club further, helping with the Centenary year planning or linking notable members of our community to the club please contact David Cross at firstname.lastname@example.org