Pembrokeshire can trace its cricketing roots back to the first half of the 19th century. Clubs developed during the 1830s with Tenby formed in 1830 and Haverfordwest in 1838. A Pembrokeshire side was created during the 1830s and amongst its fixtures were annual matches against the clubs from Carmarthen, Tenby and the officers from the Royal Artillery based at Pembroke Dock. Indeed, the presence of the military gave a boost to the playing of cricket in the county, and gave clubs such as Pembroke Dock, seen in the image below, a chance to expand their fixture list and select talented military cricketers.
The 1840s saw the creation of similar clubs in towns such as Pembroke and Haverfordwest, whilst the growth of tourism in areas such as Tenby gave cricket a further boost from the mid 19th century. The opening of railway lines and the presence of major garrisons in the Pembrokeshire ports, together with its trading links with Ireland, all gave a massive boost to cricket in the county. The image below shows the Laugharne CC side of 1889.
Cricket in Pembrokeshire was given a further boost during the 20th century by the creation of an inter-club competition for the Harrison-Allen Bowl, sponsored by the landed family at Cresselly House.
It gave the Harrison-Allen’s great delight when the Cresselly side won the local tournament and the image opposite shows Maurice Cole and Roly Edwards from Cresselly CC proudly holding the Bowl after they had won the 1978 Final.
After many years of inactivity, a fully constituted Pembrokeshire club was created in the Autumn of 1947. Ever since, the Pembrokeshire club has played a series of games against other county sides from Wales, including an annual match with Glamorgan 2nd XI.
County cricket comes to Cresselly
In 2007 Glamorgan staged their match in the Friends Provident Trophy against Surrey at the delightful Cresselly CC. With a population of less than a hundred in the nearby village, and a dairy farm alongside, this is one of the most rural settings in Wales at which county cricket has ever been staged.