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William Felton Peel is the gentleman sitting in the centre of this picture with the black hat. This picture was taken in 1906. A cricket match between Hawley House & Hawley Hill. He lived at Hawley Hill House. Later known as the Hawley Hotel (now demolished).

He was a founding member of our club, and he is buried in Hawley Trinity Churchyard just accross the road from Hawley Memorial Hall, where the photo above was taken. His grave is to the left as you enter the church entrance, with the large 8 feet wooden crucifix, identifying his grave.

William Felton Peel was born in Tamworth and worked as a cotton and foreign produce merchant in Alexandria in Egypt and in Bombay in India, where five of his eight children were born between 1868 and 1874. He later returned to England, and was in business in Broughton, Salford, near Manchester, where the other three children were born between 1876 and 1879. He lived at Comberford Hall with his wife Sarah Edith Willoughby and their children between 1900 -1902, before moving to Hawley Hill, Blackwater, Hampshire, 1903-1907.

He died in 1907 during a polo accident in Alexandria Egypt. But he is buried along with his wife in Holy Trinity Church, Hawley.

Holy Trinity church, Hawley

William Felton Peel's gravestone.

William Felton Peel (1839 - 1907)

Sir Robert Peel (1788 - 1850)

Hawley House ca.1828 property of J.Norris Esq. who's father also built the Obelisk in Camberley in (1765-70)

Inscription on William Felton Peel's gravestone

Hawley House staff, with we believe, circled, Head of House, Frank Randall Palmer, featured in a straw hat in the 1906 cricket group photo above, sitting next to William Felton Peel.

Hawley House 2014

Hawley Hill House (Hawley Hotel) Residence of William Felton Peel (1903-07)

This photo taken April 1983 prior to demolition.

1907 Rear view of Hawley Hill House - Residence of William Felton Peel (1903-07) It was not until after the war in 1918 that the House was converted into a Hotel.

Hawley CC clubhouse (left) on Hawley Green - picture taken 1906


A brief history of Hawley & Bridge Memorial Cricket Club, so-called since 1912, prior to which it was known simply as Hawley Cricket Club.

1865 Original club formed.

1875 Mr Simeon Rowe became Headmaster of Hawley School; a typical schoolmaster of the period, he was organist, choirmaster, bellringer and captain of the village cricket team.

1881 Cricket Club was reformed.

A pioneer of Hawley cricket was Mr G C Meynell who had the Green, covered with rough heather, levelled and a pitch laid out in 1883 - 84. In those days the club held an annual dinner, usually at the White Hart, Blackwater. Before 1883, cricket was played on a field behind the White Hart.

1893 A Boys Cricket Club was formed.

1895 It was reported at the Annual Meeting that the accounts had diminished as they had felt the full burden of keeping the ground in order, but it was agreed that "this pretty green, in summer such a recreation to the young - a refreshment to the old - ought not to be neglected.

1897 There were 52 members. This was the year of Queen Victoria's Diamond Dubilee and to commemorate the occasion a cricket pavilion was erected by voluntary subscription on the western side of the Green. The architect was a Mr Castings, employed at Minley Manor (The Memorial Hall, was built later, in 1921)

1905 The Cricket Club had to play on a ground at Hawley House because "the footballers had spoiled the Green". In 1908-09 the Football Club played on a pitch at Hawley House, presumably the cricketers were again on the Green.

1910 On Saturday July 9th a Costume Match was played, Hawley vs The Stonemasons, followed by a dance on the Green.

About this time the Club ran into some difficulties, as shown by the following extract from the Hawley and Minley Parish Magazine for October, 1909:

Hawley Cricket Club: I am sorry to say that the interest in cricket in the village is at a very low ebb and I am afraid that unless more interest is shewn, the Hawley Cricket Club will collapse. It has been necessary in almost every match to obtain outside help and what is most galling to me as Secretary is that I was obliged to scratch two matches owing to the Match Secretary's inability to get an eleven. There must be more keenness on the part of the players. If it is necessary to beg and pray a man to play, I consider he is not worth playing. In some instances the members are employees and in these cases I would respectfully beg their masters to do what is possible to help us. It is useless collecting subscriptions if we do not get active support in the field. I am tired of complaining but I must mention the action of some members in playing for our opponents, when they know perfectly well of Mr Hill's difficulty in getting a side - it appears to me very unsporting. (This was reprinted in 1969, when the Club was in difficulty again, mostly due to not having a ground to play home matches on, "home" matches being played at Watchetts Recreation Ground, Camberley, and on other CUDC pitches at Frimley Green and at Old Dean)

1912 In view of the above, it is not surprising that the Secretary resigned and no one would take over, so it was decided to write to the Hawley & Bridge Memorial Working Mens’ Club to ask if "they were desirous of taking over and carrying on". This they agreed to do and the Club was then called Hawley & Bridge Memorial Cricket Club, the members did much to bring the ground into good condition, with the help of Old Nobby, a pony belonging to Mr G Chatt, to pull the mowing machine.

1920's Notable players in this period were George Croucher, verger at Holy Trinity for many years, needless to say with a name like that a fine wicketkeeper !, batsman G-John Glennie, son of Canon Glennie, the Vicar, and Rev. A W Armitstead, a good slow bowler.

1960's, 1970's As mentioned above, there were difficulties in keeping the Club going at this time. Of those who did soldier on mention should be made of Frank and David Rose, Dave Bush and Bob Haggett (both still soldiering on !) David Fowles, Brian Pearson, David Phillips, Robin Prictoe, Eric Smith, Mick Travers, Roy Wiggins (a small chap but hitter of the biggest sixes ever ',),Peter Clarke, John Awcock, Ken Winkworth, etc. Seeing the present healthy state of the Club, those of us from this period are pleased that the Club was not allowed to fold up.

1978 This year saw the official opening of the new Sports Centre by Mr Richard Yeomans who for many years served Hawley as a member, and for some time Chairman of the Parish Council.

1980's, 1990's

See recent Club records, etc


Most of the details of the Club history up until the 1920s came from the two booklets written and compiled by Nora Hough: I Remember, You Remember Blackwater and Hawley, and: We Remember Blackwater and Hawley with the Yorktown Shops.

Then 1897

Now 2014

Hawley Cricket Club (years 1960 – 1976)

Our President, Robert Haggett, was able to supply us with the cricket club’s history during these years.

During the 1960’s, Hawley Green was used by the football club in the winter, but this resulted in the green being unplayable for cricket during the summer months.

The club therefore had to find a new pitch, and as a result a move to Watchett’s recreation ground Camberley took place, which we used for about 3 years.

After this time, the local council got wind that we were based in Blackwater, Hampshire, and were therefore not a Surrey based club.

So they no longer allowed us to use their cricket pitches, which is why the club had to find new premises, so we had to wend our way  to the Frimley Green recreation ground, in order to continue playing cricket, which we did for many years.

Around 1978 a new Blackwater & Hawley Leisure Centre was built, behind the land at Hawley Green, our original venue. So once again we moved back to our roots to play cricket matches, where we remain to the current day.

Mick joined Reading as a youngster and played 153 games for the "Biscuitmen", joined Portsmouth in 1967 making 74 outings before joining the Shots for the memorable 72/3 season where he made a valuable contribution to the Shots promotion campaign playing 30 times. Joined Basingstoke Town at the end of the season and now believed to be a solicitor in his home town of Camberley.

After the war Bernie played professional football, keeping goal for Notts County for two years. After that he joined Portsmouth City Police where he served for 8 years both in uniform and in the C.I.D. He never stopped enjoying his cricket and football and played at every possible opportunity which was why his police career came to an end – the shift work interfered with his games!

Other noteable players who played for Hawley & Bridge Cricket Club.

Ex-Professional footballers :-

Bernard Wright

Mick Travers

For the record, the date of 1897 for the Clubs beginnings is taken from the date when the clubs first Cricket Pavillion was built to commemorate Queen Victoria's Diamond jubilee year (60 year) reign in 1897.

Time-line for "Hawley & Bridge Memorial Cricket Club" and "Hawley Cricket Club".

1851 Hawley Green  conveyed to Rev.John Randell for 10/-

1865 Heather covered the green, which was cleared in order to play cricket.

1881 A proper cricket track is laid by Mr.C.G.Meynell. (completed 1883-84).

1897 The cricket pavilion was erected in celebration of Queen Victoria’s   Diamond Jubilee ( 60 years). (cost £456.8s.6d)  (opened Dec.28th 1897)

1906  Team photo taken in front of pavilion.

1912 Club re-formed to become Hawley & Bridge Memorial Cricket Club, after difficulties with the Hawley Cricket Club.

1919 Young men returning from the front and the Cricket Club is restarted.

1922    New memorial Hall opened.

1960-70’s No home ground, so matches were played at Watchetts Recreation ground, Old Dean Estate and Frimley recreation ground.

1978 New Sports Centre opened by Richard Yeomans, and Hawley & Bridge Memorial Cricket Club now have a new home ground, and reverts to being called “ Hawley Cricket Club”.

1997 Club has it’s Centenary year. ( date taken from the opening of the first Cricket pavilion, in 1897, in commemoration of Queen Victoria’s 60 year reign.)

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William Felton Peel

Our most famous member of Hawley Cricket Club was William Felton Peel who's great-grandfather was uncle to Prime Minister, Sir Robert Peel, arguably Great Britains greatest Prime Minister. ( 1834 -1835) & again (1841-1846).