Gordons celebrate 150 years

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ELLON Gordon Cricket Club is set to enjoy a night of double celebrations this Friday when a large gathering of cricketers past and present will assemble at the Station Hotel in the town.

The oldest sporting club in the East Gordon area will celebrate 150 years of playing the game, which neatly coincides with the club winning its first ever Aberdeenshire Grades 1 title.

“Both events are huge landmark moments for the club. We intend to have a birthday bash, but just of all we want to acknowledge the major achievement of winning our first Grades 1 title,” said club veteran Ean Mackie who, as usual, is in the thick of masterminding the event.

The fine old club will also be saluting its second team who won Grade 4 to make it a notable double for an organisation that came into existence when Queen Victoria was on the throne in 1862, and has made a major contribution to sport in the town.

Ellon Gordon held a 125th anniversary in the New Inn, attracting a big crowd who included Scotland wicket-keeper Jackie Knight and Buff Hardie of Scotland The What fame.

“It was a marvellous night. I just hope we can do as well this week, and get our old players out to join in the celebrations, though there will be some sad moments as we remember some of our friends who have passed away over the years.

“In particular we recall the huge contribution Alan Middleton made in his time as skipper of the side. In recent weeks we have also lost Eric Thomson,” said Ean, who was named as cricketer of the year at the Grades Dinner at Westhill in November when his services to sport were acknowledged by the media of the North-east.

The two winning captains Scott White and Chris Watson will be present, though the principal speakers will be Doug Duthie - a retired policeman - and Bob McFarlane of Cricket Scotland.

The father and son combination of president Hayden Barrett and Jonathan Barrett, the club’s most prolific batsman, will also be there to mark 150 years of playing the game in Ellon.

A mark of the progress the club has made is best reflected in the fact that Ellon Gordon has one of the few ladies playing in the North-east in Fiona Campbell, a spinner of the highest order, not to mention a handy batsperson.

Appropriately the meal will be held in the Station Hotel who provide the excellent teas on match days for the two title winning teams.