Twyford Cricket Clubs history is a bit of a mystery. We are trying to uncover some information about the club from back in the day and we will be updating this page accordingly. For now we will concentrate on the club from 1992 onwards when the club was saved from extinction by a few individuals who really deserve the lion's share of the credit for getting us where we are today.
In 1992 the club was on the brink of folding. The pavilion was in an awful state with toilets that didn't work, no showering facilities, un-hygienic changing rooms and writing all over the semi-white pavilion walls. The outfield was too long and full of weeds, the square was poor and in dire need of some attention. The club had no money and only a small band of players and all these problems together caused the club to be in major trouble of actually being able to function. One man took the initiative and showed the determination to not let the club we all love go under. Chris Withey, a local man with a love for the club and game that can only be matched by a few individuals dug deep in his own pockets and within weeks of the talk of folding the club, had purchased a set of gang mowers, a motorized wicket roller and a wicket mower. The work on the grounds playing facilities could now begin and with some dedication and a plan the clubs playing area has been transformed from the unsightly cabbage patch of 1991 to one of the best grounds in the area now in 2009. The next step was to recruit some players, and Chris Withey and Mike Roberts set about contacting past players and recruiting a team that could pave the way for rebuilding the club on the pitch. Some old players returned and Mike and Chris attracted a few others and over the years as the ground began to improve the team began to perform better.
The big turning point for our club was the rebuild of the pavilion. From the outset of this project the effort involved was monumental and the money required was huge. There was ambition with the new design, two large changing rooms with several showers in each, an umpires room, men's and women's toilet facilities, a kitchen and tea room and of course a large garage to store the ground equipment. Grants were applied for and approved and we thank the following for the support and help they have shown our club, Aylesbury Vale Sports Council, The Football Association and The Sports and Arts Council. Many other fund raising events took place and over the space of two years, work began on demolition the eyesore that existed and building the new pavilion we are proud to have today. Again Chris Withey decided to take on the role of project manager and actually got his hands dirty as well getting involved with working on the new build. The building was completed in the spring of 1995 after a lot of hard work, generosity and time from local businesses and people. The finished pavilion was nothing like the original drawings but Chris had insisted that it should be more extensive than the original plans and again dipped into his own pocket to fund some of these minor alterations!!!
The clubs next major development was focused on providing some practice facilities for the current players but more specifically to introduce some youth cricket into the club. Chris Withey, Mike Roberts and Trevor King decided that an all weather wicket would be ideal for youth cricket development and again ideas were hatched as to how we could raise the money. Paper recycling was the main idea and many people in the village and some of the current crop of players will remember the Sunday morning collections taking place from the village and other villages in the area. Together with the young Twyford cricketers, Chris would drive his lorry around collecting paper until the target had been reached. Ex-England international Derek Underwood's Company was given the contract of laying our artificial wicket which was used by all our youth teams and eventually our midweek cricket team.
Now to talk about the other half of the duo that has made our club what it is today, Mike Roberts. Back in 1992 the club needed players, but not just players who fancied a game of cricket. They needed a few individuals who had played the game and knew what the game was about. Mike had played a good standard of cricket and was well known in the game. Mike came to the club and installed some proper cricketing knowledge, a classy left handed batsman and an instrumental captain. Mikes vision as a player, a captain and since as club chairman was to see the club rise from the awful playing conditions and standards of that time to be part of the Cherwell League Association. This, to many at the time seemed impossible, a dream that would never in a million years be achieved but in 2007, Twyford 1st team won the OCA Division One and were accepted into the Cherwell League. From the South Northants Cricket Leagues to the Oxfordshire Cricket Association, Twyford went from one team on a Saturday, to fielding two competitive men's teams, with older veterans of the game playing with the youth coming up through the clubs ranks. Leagues and cups were won and various captains over the years have led teams on the journey to where we are now. Mike was and still is the driving force behind the club. From his inspiring years as captain, attracting good players and professionals to the club, to his current role as chairman and head grounds man, Mike has always put the club first and always aims high. All members of this club from back in 1992 to the present day should realise and appreciate what Mike has done, is doing and always will do to further the standard and quality of cricket at Twyford Cricket Club. A true clubman of the kind that many clubs never have, we are lucky and proud to have Mike as our chairman.