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Cricket To The Crease At Warwick Conference

Cricket-lovers will be able romp through four centuries in six hours at a unique conference dedicated to the history of the game at the University of Warwick.

Academics, historians of the game and fans will gather to discuss topics ranging across the sport’s varied past next month.

It is believed to be the first time that a university conference covering cricket has been held.

It was organised by Joan Lane of Warwick University’s history department, who was looking for a subject that could appeal to people from non-academic as well as academic backgrounds.

A lifelong member of Worcestershire CCC, Dr Lane knew that there would be many aficionados of the game keen to find out about more its varies past.

Roger IddisonCharacters such as Dr Lane’s husband’s great-grandfather Roger Iddison (right) give the game a unique history.

Iddison was captain of Yorkshire for nine years in the 1860s, and was a professional in the days when only amateurs were considered to be “gentlemen”.

Dr Lane said:

“He used to be an apprentice to a rug-maker, a butcher, and was also a commission agent  - a bookie.

“He seemed to find a way to keep the money coming in and I think he was quite a trade unionist kind of cricketer.

“He was quite prepared to clear out his cricketers and say they wouldn’t play if the rate of pay wasn’t good enough.”

Speakers at the conference on 14 October include Peter Wynne-Thomas, from the Association of Cricket Statisticians on the early 17th century roots of cricket; WG Grace biographer Simon Rae, MCC archivist Stephen Green, who will give an illustrated talk on how cricket has been portrayed in paintings, and Lincoln Allison from Warwick University, speaking on the commercial modern era.

Dr Lane said:

“Cricket is going through upheaval at the moment and although cricket-lovers look at these changes and take them on board I think they are traditionalists.

“If you go into any cricket club or pavilion it’s always filled with memorabilia.

“I believe this is the first university conference on cricket, and I hope it leads to others around the country.

“It isn’t just for academic people, it just happens to be taking place on a campus.”

Anyone who wants to book a place at the conference should contact Dr Lane at as soon as possible, as numbers have to be finalised shortly.
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CWN / Education / University of Warwick / 27 Sep 00

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM