Historical Moment for the Cloud County Ground beckons


The Cloud County Ground in Chelmsford will overtake Leyton County Ground for the record of having hosted the most Essex first-class matches when the Eagles face Lancashire from Friday.

To mark the occasion of the record being broken, a celebratory walk is taking place between the two venues from Wednesday 17 – Friday 19 April.

Covering the full distance between the two, the walk will also visit the other grounds to have hosted an Essex first-class match along the way.

The walk, which will raise money for the Essex Cricket Foundation, will start from Leyton on Wednesday 17 April and will also take in Ilford, Gidea Park, Brentwood, Anglo-European School, and the Hoffmann’s Ground in Chelmsford.

Graham Gooch and Nasser Hussain are among those participating in the walk and you can support the group by making a donation to the Essex Cricket Foundation and celebrate a significant piece of Essex Cricket history, follow the link below:

Leyton hosted its maiden first-class Essex game in May 1894 against Leicestershire, and would go on to be the home of Essex for a total of 407 matches until August 1977, when Glamorgan were the final visitors.

Overall, the Club won 111 of those games, losing 128 and drawing 167, with one, against Gloucestershire in 1959, ending in a tie.

Meanwhile, the Chelmsford venue, which is 23 miles to the north-east, was first used in 1925 for a University match against Oxford, by which time the East London ground had hosted 275 games.

However, following the end of first-class cricket at Leyton, it rapidly caught up in the ensuing years, and became the exclusive home of the Club in 2016.

Having drawn level during the most recent game against Kent, Chelmsford will break the record this week, and is set to have hosted 413 games by the conclusion of the 2024 season.

Essex have enjoyed more success at The Cloud County Ground, winning 145 matches in comparison to 96 losses and 165 draws, with one complete abandonment, in 1981 against Gloucestershire.