Sheriff Hutton Bridge C.C. came in to existence in 1949 when three youngsters, John and Gordon Pennock and Roy Piercy approached farmer Jim Rhodes to ask if they could play cricket on one of his fields. Rhodes, a former Huntington player and at that time playing for Castle Howard agreed and so cricket at Moor Farm began. Piercy remains involved as Club President having been a most effective bowler for the club for many years. His 10 wickets for just 9 runs against New Earswick in 1968 remains as the club’s best bowling return and stood as a league record for an unprecedented 39 years until beaten in 2004.
Initially players changed under a stack sheet hanging from a branch of one of the riverside trees. This was succeeded by a bus body and then a prefab before the current tearoom area was erected as a pavilion. The present changing rooms and showers being added later.
In 1952 they did the double
Jim Rhodes soon became captain of a side that included his son “Young” Jimmy, nephew Gerry Grinham and left arm slow bowler Harry “Nuggett” Goddard who between them formed the backbone of a side which had much cup success. In 1952 they did the double, winning the York Saturday League and the League’s Prendergast Club – the latter in unusual circumstances when they beat ‘The Rest’ by 9 wickets after the other finalist, Strensall, refused to play.
Won the York Saturday League and Cup
Gerry Grinham soon took over as skipper and led a side, now strengthened by left-handed batsmen Tony Wyrill and Bryan Nelson, that won the York Saturday League and Cup, as well as three other local cup competitions in 1955. He was to remain at the helm for a decade.
The club made a switch to the York Senior League in 1959
Having been all-conquering in the York Saturday League, the club made a switch to the York Senior League in 1959 when they opened their campaign with a home fixture against Sessay when – it rained! This meant that their first result in the new league was a 91 run win at Haxby on May 2nd. At the end of this debut season, the younger Rhodes stepped down as club secretary, being replaced by 19 years old Albert Pattison. He held the post for 25 years before handing over to Colin Mole who has performed the duties from 1984 to the present time.
npower National Village Cup triumph in 2005
The club won promotion to the first division in 1961 thanks to a great extent to the bowling of Alan Shipley who moved from Stillington to claim 61 wickets at 5.71. During this time the club continued to reap vast rewards in local cup competitions and it was a regular occurrence for players to play 15 or 16 days in succession. Records show that by the end of the 1969 season, the club had won 33 trophies. This figure has now been increased to 132 of which by far the most prestigious was the npower National Village Cup triumph in 2005 when they defeated Eynsford by 4 wickets thanks to an unbeaten 76 by man-of-the-match Steve Crowder who helped Paul Scaling’s side mount the highest successful run chase in a final. It was significant that the bulk of the side had emerged from the club’s junior programme.
Throughout its Y&DSCL membership, the club has had 34 seasons in the top flight and has never been lower than the 9th place in Division II that they occupied in their debut season back in 1959.
The League’s highest ever run scorer and broke batting records in all three leagues
The 1965 season saw the emergence of two local youngsters who were to become top stars, not only in the York League but also in the Yorkshire and Bradford Leagues. Des Wyrill is thought to be the League’s highest ever run scorer and broke batting records in all three leagues, as well as being a more than useful bowler in his younger days – a talent that helped him become the first player to score 500 runs and take 50 wickets since comprehensive records were kept. Brian Shirley is regarded by many as the League’s best wicket-keeper batsman who again shone in all three leagues.
The first winner in 2011 of the new Groundsman’s Award
Mick Oldfield took over the first team captaincy in 1970 and led the side to third place in 4 successive seasons. He is the only home grown bowler to record three eight wicket first division hauls in a season and the only player to have gained two eight wicket hauls against the same opposition in a season on two occasions. Mick has been chairman and groundsman at The Bridge for many years and was the first winner in 2011 of the new Groundsman’s Award. For these two roles, together with 31 year’s service on the League Committee, Mick was a winner of a YCB OSCA special award in 2011.
The club has run a successful second XI since 1960 and the team reached the giddy heights of Division Two after winning the third division in 1970. However, the club’s highspot from a League point of view was back-to-back League Championships under the skippership of Clive Clark in 1988 and 1989 during a spell when Barry Petty and Martin Shepherdson were spearheading the attack. Backing up Petty in 1989, when the league was won by 105 points, was an emerging Paul Oldfield who has been a stalwart for the club with both bat and ball ever since, and has been club captain for many of those years.
Matthew became the youngest player to appear for the Yorkshire Academy in 2011
Stephen Coverdale started his junior and club cricket at SHB before going on to earn a Cambridge blue and play county cricket for both Yorkshire & Northants. Other notable players to represent the club include Jim Collis, Colin Mole, Chris Tate, Colin Minton, Stuart, Ian and Gordon Reynolds, Don Pringle and Ray Midgley. In recent years Adam Fisher has played regularly for the League XI and his younger brother Matthew became the youngest player to appear for the Yorkshire Academy in 2011.
The club has always had a strong band of ‘workers’ in all the many areas required for a successful club, not least of all the Ladies whose efforts in the catering department are lauded throughout the League.
The first team has returned to the premier division for 2012 and the junior sections from under 9 to under 18 continue to thrive together with an Indoor side and a Pilmoor Evening League XI.
A more comprehensive history was included in the club’s Fifty Years Celebration booklet published in 1999.