Le Bons Bay CC History
There is no evidence of a date as to when the Le Bons Bay CC was formed but it's estimated to be several years before officially entering the competition in 1932. This coincided with the commission of a pitch at the local recreation ground.
In the earlier days only friendly matches were played usually against Wainui, Okains Bay and Little River. There were matched in the Mackintosh paddock opposite the school with bats made by Charles Crotty who used local bush vine in the bat handles along with local Le Bons Willow.
The local football club finally begun to level the recreation ground in 1928 but it was a few years later before grass could be sown and a cricket ground developed after a few false starts with weather and wildlife causing issues.
April 10 1933 all the local residents turned up to lay 400 yards of soil
Banks Peninsula cricket had never been "big business" and late in 1933 it was suggested that the Christchurch Suburban Association take over the Peninsula competition but this was opposed by Le Bons.
After the bodyline series in Australia in 1933 it was decided that no "bumping or bodyline bowling" were allowed to occur.
Subscription fees that year were optional but a minimum of 1 shilling.
The club began to struggle for numbers in the mid-late 1930s and didn't always enter a team and the ground began to deteriorate due to gorse and broom being bought in with the soil.
In 1937-38 The club went into recess and was not revived until 1946
1946 the ground was cleared again and the club re-entered the competition and in 1949 after a 10 year discussion and negotiation process a pavilion was finally built with many local families donating and planting trees around the domain.
Summers came and went with Le Bons enjoying their share of team and individual successes.
Competition rules changed throughout the years. Playing times changed due to things like cow milking, inconsistant over rates and lost balls in the lupins, sometimes assisted by the fielding team "unable" to see the ball wedged firmly under foot.
LeBons Bay CC has always had great support whether it be people maintaining the grounds and giving up their time or the wives and families of all teams turning up for a great day at the cricket.
For a small settlement Le Bons success has been extraordinary whether it was because of the close knit community, wonderful facilities or at times very vocal and sometimes quite outspoken support.
The current pavillion was built in 1981 which is a tribute to the leadership of Peter Johnston and the whole Le Bons community throughout the years. The current serene setting bears little resemblance to the ground of early years but the memories live on.