Sedgefield Asylum, Cricket Ground
23 Jun 2023
Sedgefield Asylum CC
NEHL - The Sedgefield County Lunatic Asylum was home to its own cricket club between the 1860s and 1920s. They likely played on the patch of ground between the cemetery and St Luke's Chapel, which appears to incorporate its own clubhouse on the 1890s maps.
The first mention of cricket being played here is in 1868, when Sedgefield played against a County Asylum team on "the ground of the latter". This was potentially the first in an annual event between the town and the asylum CC. The Sedgefield XI won. They played each other again in the September of 1868, with the asylum being declared victors.
The club also played against other state institutions. A mention in the Newcastle Journal of July 1902 states the team played against West Hartlepool Police at the Asylum Ground.
Mentions of the team dry up in the 1920s. The last report on a cricket match here is in 1928 for the "annual visit" for the Durham County Asylum game. The complex was also underground considerable reform in the 1920s and 30s - this may have been part of the changes.
Part of the field is still extant, though the area has been redeveloped as a technology park.
Ordnance Survey, 1897
It is likely cricket was played in the field on the right hand side. Source: countyasylums.co.uk
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Historic Environment Records
Durham/Northumberland: Keys to the Past
Tyne and Wear: Sitelines
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