Touring Trent Bridge: Home of the Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club
We take a look into the iconic cricket ground that is Trent Bridge, and how it has been a home for cricket fans over many years throughout its history.
The cricket ground has a rich history, dating back to as early as 1841. It’s known as one of the best places to watch cricket in the Test, One-Day International and County categories.
Located in West Bridgford, Nottinghamshire, across from the river Trent, the ground has not only served as the home of Nottinghamshire County Cricket club, but has even hosted some football matches.
The Historical Ground
Notts County Football Club used the grounds for their games from the 1860s before moving there permanently in 1883. Though early and later games had to be played elsewhere due to clashes with the cricket club, leading to the football team moving to a more permanent home at Meadow Lane in 1910.
But before all of this, the ground was devoted exclusively to cricket. The first games were apparently played here because of its position as a coach stop on the river.
A plot of land behind what was originally the Trent Bridge Inn (now a Wetherspoons) was also opened as a ground by the pub’s manager William Clarke. You may have heard his name associated with one of the stands on the ground which was named after him.
During the Victorian era when the ground first opened, Nottinghamshire was building a name for itself among the other counties, especially with its mining communities in the north and west.
The first hundred at Trent Bridge was scored in 1871 by WG Grace, who was challenged by Notts batsman Arthur Shrewsbury.
The first Test was held later in 1899, leading to the cricket ground’s reputation as one of the most popular stops which it retains so prominently today.
Another stand was also named after the famous Notts batsman George Parr, who became known for hitting the ball over, through or around a tree which stood outside the boundary wall on the Bridgford Road side of the ground, believed to date back to the earliest days of cricket at Trent Bridge.
William Caffyn, describing his colleague Parr’s technique, wrote:
“As a leg-hitter Parr will always be best known. His method was to reach out with the left leg straight down the wicket, bending the knee, and to sweep the ball round in a sort of half-circle.”
After Parr’s death in 1891, a branch from the tree was placed in his grave, while another was displayed in the Trent Bridge pavilion. The stand named after Parr was later built in 1955 in front of where the tree stood.
You can book a guided tour of the ground for a behind-the-scenes look at all the site has to offer here.
Visiting Trent Bridge
Want to visit the iconic cricket ground and experience it for yourself? You’ll find it in West Bridgford, Nottingham, accessed from the M1 on junction 24 (A453) from the South, or Junction 25 (A52), following the signs for West Bridgford or the cricket ground.
From the North, you’ll need to take Junction 26 (A610), again following the signs for West Bridgford. Parking around the area is relatively easy with lots of options around the Lace Market and Ice Arena areas of the town centre. The ground itself has three car parks and there are two down the road into West Bridgford.
For public transport, you’ll find plenty of links via the East Midlands Trains, Cross Country and Northern. Regular buses also run from the station to Trent Bridge, and there are also taxi ranks on the northern side of the station. You can also get there on foot in about 20-minutes following the A60, or along the Nottingham Canal.
While You’re in The Area
During your visit to the cricket ground, you can fill in some time with a range of activities with something for everyone. Visit the City of Caves at Garner’s Hill and continue your historical journey with a tour of the city’s caves, previously used as a tannery, pub cellars and air raid shelters during the wars.
There’s also the Nottingham Industrial Museum nearby which will take you through the history of Nottingham’s industrial past at Wollaton Hall. From here, you could take a walk up to the Nottingham University campus and into town.
For horserace enthusiasts, there’s the Nottingham Racecourse to entertain your curiosity at Colwick Park, and at Arkwright Walk there’s even the Eden Soft play for kids, offering a four-tier indoor play area for under-10’s.
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