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Yorkshire

Cricket Foundation

The Yorkshire Cricket Archive

The Yorkshire Cricket Archive comprises historic artefacts and memorabilia evidencing the history and development of Yorkshire cricket from its origins to the present day. A selection of important artefacts is displayed in the Yorkshire Cricket Museum, within the East Stand at Emerald Headingley Stadium and the remaining collections are stored on behalf of The Yorkshire Cricket Club at West Yorkshire Archives Service in Morley, Leeds.

What is it?

The archive of Yorkshire Cricket Club (The Yorkshire Cricket Archive) is administered by the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation, Yorkshire Cricket’s charitable arm, on behalf of the Club. It comprises, but is not limited to, a collection of cricket equipment, clothing and cricket-wear, Club records, photographs, memorabilia and trophies.

The Foundation has responsibility to care for and develop the Club’s history and heritage, and uses the Archive to support its programme of health and wellbeing activity; education and participation; community engagement and social inclusion, using cricket as the focus of these activities.

Along with the Yorkshire Cricket Board and the Yorkshire County Cricket Club, the Foundation forms `Yorkshire Cricket, and its staff is ultimately responsible to the Board of Trustees of the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation.

For further information, please contact the Foundation’s Heritage Manager, Paul Goodman, on paul.goodman@yorkshirecricketfoundation.com

What is it for?

The Archive is used to tell the story of Yorkshire cricket from its earliest origins to the present day. This is for the benefit, enjoyment and engagement of all of its visitors and patrons. This commitment extends to caring for, the preservation and addition of objects to the Archive, as well as making them available for study and research, and generally promote visitor’s enjoyment and understanding of cricket and its social, cultural and community impacts, to support the Foundation’s ambitions of community engagement and social cohesion, enabling it to:

  • place cricket in a range of different contexts – social, cultural, economic, political – to serve the Foundation’s aims, whilst helping the understanding of the importance and relevance of the sport to people’s lives.

  • maintain a record of cricket in Yorkshire, evidenced through writing, documentation and artefacts.

  • sustain and engender research, meeting the needs of academic communities, constituencies of interest, and of the general public.

  • develop and deliver a range of outputs, including (but not limited to) exhibitions, events, publications, online engagement, and educational and community resources.

  • support the public understanding of social and sporting history across Yorkshire’s communities.

  • promote the past, present and future value of cricket to Yorkshire’s communities, making the county’s clubs and leagues more resilient and aware of their heritage, and its potential and importance.

  • celebrate the contribution that cricket, the county club and its great players, past and current have made to the identity of Yorkshire.

How does it acquire material?

Prior to 1 January 2013, all artefacts, however acquired (gift, purchase, loan, bequest or transfer) for the Archive, are owned by the Yorkshire County Cricket Club. Ownership of and title to artefacts acquired after that date is assumed by the Foundation. However, the Foundation has responsibility for managing and caring for the whole Archive.

The Foundation collects historic and contemporary cricket artefacts, ephemera and memorabilia which is about cricket in Yorkshire – from the county club to the many league cricket clubs, current and extinct.

It primarily accepts material by gift; occasionally, it will make planned or opportunist purchases (e.g. via eBay) but its purchasing power is limited; often items will be taken in on loan; rarely material is transferred from another museum or cricket club, or by bequest.

For further information, please contact the Foundation’s Heritage Manager, Paul Goodman, on paul.goodman@yorkshirecricketfoundation.com

How do I offer my items to the Archive?

There are lots of reasons why a decision is taken about whether to accept or reject offers to the Archive.

It is often made through balancing the overall value of permanently preserving them against making them accessible, and consideration must be given to:

  • the size of a collection and implications for storage capacity and associated costs;
  • whether or not it is a sale or donation
  • conditions which may hamper or prohibit its usage (e.g. loan stipulations, copyright, conservation etc.)
  • an item’s rarity or enduring historical value
  • whether an item duplicates an object already in the Archive
  • the physical condition/usability of an item (preserving badly damaged items can be costly (e.g. paper records that are badly damaged – torn, smudged, water-affected or burnt)
  • an item or group of items’ research value
  • the best format for storing the item (which could be digitisation)
  • inherent preservation issues which cause the item to deteriorate over time or which may have a deleterious impact on other material in the Archive.

The Foundation will prioritise items for the Archive which are:

  • rare or unique
  • signed or bear unique marks, inscriptions or descriptions
  • discrete items or complete archives associated with a particular location, significant event or important individual
  • evidential of international, county, league or club prowess or heritage
  • complete hitherto incomplete collections
  • possess outstanding provenance
  • in excellent condition.

As a rule, duplicates of items will not be acquired unless justified by their value/rarity. Where this is necessary or deemed appropriate, consideration must be given to disposing of the item which is of lesser importance (according to the criteria above) or in poorer condition.

In all cases, potential acquisitions must have a clear and indelible link to Yorkshire cricket in all its forms.
All offers should be addressed to the Foundation’s Heritage Manager who will respond as soon as possible, acknowledging the enquiry within a month. The Heritage Manager will aim to let donors know the outcome of their offers within a three-month period.

Please be aware that:

  • the Foundation cannot accept objects that represent a potential hazard unless there is a compelling reason to do so.
  • it cannot accept objects that pose a threat to the Archive (i.e. items with pest infestations).
  • large objects or collections that may create storage issues will be considered on their individual merits
  • items should be brought to the Foundation by appointment only. Please do not send material through the post unless this has been agreed in advance with the Heritage Manager.
  • the Heritage Manager cannot give advice on items for sale or provide valuations, or authenticate objects but will be pleased to offer advice on where these services may be provided

Unsolicited objects will rarely be accepted – these are offers for donation that have been left at or posted to the Foundation without prior discussion and agreement with the Heritage Manager. Where this has occurred, the Heritage Manager will do their best to contact the donors of unsolicited offers in order for them to collect their objects. Should objects remain uncollected for four months, or if no contact details are left, absolute ownership will automatically be transferred to the Foundation who may dispose of objects as it sees fit.

For further information on how to offer material, please contact the Foundation’s Heritage Manager, Paul Goodman, on paul.goodman@yorkshirecricketfoundation.com

What are the Archive’s priorities?

The Archive is very rich in historic material relating to people, places and events from the origins of cricket in Yorkshire, although this strength begins to diminish around 1970. In terms of reflecting the current demographic and landscape of Yorkshire cricket (as well as looking to appeal to, inspire and engage younger visitors and audiences), the main emphasis of collecting will aim to be contemporary and current, which for the purposes of this document means post-1970 to date.

Although this period encompasses a relatively barren period of success for Yorkshire County Cricket Club, it remains a key and critical part of the county’s story which much be told, particularly in the context of wider developments in cricket and the region’s socio-cultural landscape. It is therefore necessary to collect artefacts (wherever they are available) which illustrate the personalities, events and milestones in the history of the Club during this tumultuous and landmark period; one which resulted in the birth of a modern Yorkshire County Cricket Club and its assimilation into contemporary cricket era, achieving new success.

On that basis, the emphasis of the Archive’s collection development will be through contemporary and current acquisition, although this will not exclude the possibility of collecting exemplary historic material from pre-1970. Such material may relate to the celebration of careers of individuals, key events and developments, especially those that bridge pre- and post-1970.

In the normal course of events, however, the key collecting areas will be the acquisition of complete archives and/or individual artefacts which either (a) address existing gaps or deficiencies in the Archive or (b) evidence or reflect Yorkshire’s significant contribution to, association and engagement with:

  • South Asian and Caribbean cricket heritage in Yorkshire, covering its relationship with the communities in and its influence on the county cricket landscape
  • the genesis and exponential growth of women and girl’s cricket at both county and international levels, and reflecting the development of the Northern Diamonds team and its precursors
  • the growth and diversification of county and international modern one-day cricket formats, including 40, 50 and 60, T20 and The Hundred limited over matches, and the development of all Yorkshire-based teams, Northern Superchargers and Yorkshire Vikings
  • the geography of the county – recognising and celebrating the variety of locations within Yorkshire where First Class cricket has been played, and acknowledging their respective idiosyncrasies, mores and cultures
  • the key personalities associated with the development of cricket in Yorkshire – current and former players (British and overseas), coaching staff, officials, umpires, statisticians etc.
  • the advent of bi-divisional and group format County Championship matches and subsequent changes to league structures (e.g. as a consequence of the Covid pandemic)
  • the introduction of `day-night’ games;
  • modern county and international record-breaking achievements by Yorkshire and visiting cricketers and teams to Yorkshire
  • Recreational (i.e. League and Club cricket) heritage throughout the county, particularly following the restructure of amateur leagues, which has rendered some leagues defunct;
  • Yorkshire youth, academy and schools cricket.