A host of leading figures from women’s cricket including former England international Claire Taylor joined over 150 guests at Lord’s on International Women’s Day as part of the first ever Evolution of Women’s Cricket symposium.
A special panel Q&A, led by MCC Foundation trustee Isabelle Duncan and featuring former England International and 2009 World Cup winner, Claire Taylor, Executive Director of the Women’s Cricket Association and 1993 World Cup winner Barbara Daniels, and former England Coach, Jane Powell told their experiences of juggling full-time jobs and playing for England, as well as their significant contributions to administrating and developing the game into a professional sport.
Leading acclaimed cricket writer and sports academic Dr. Raf Nicholson provided a fascinating insight into the inspirational and colourful history of women’s cricket, captured in her book 'Ladies and Lord's: A History of Women's Cricket in Britain' and guests were also given an exclusive tour of The Evolution of Women’s Cricket exhibition in the MCC museum, by Collections and Programmes Manager, Charlotte Goodhew who curated the show.
The exhibition, the first of its kind to tell the story of the women’s game, contains items from the pioneering women who have transformed the game including an original ‘Red’ English Lady Cricket costume from 1888, and Betty Snowball’s trunk used during England’s first tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1934-1935, as well as the first women’s World Cup from 1973.
The symposium, the first of its kind, took place hours before England played the second of their matches in the ICC Women’s World Cup in New Zealand, was originally due to take place in March 2020 but was postponed due to Covid.
The event finished with a debate and a Q&A session on the future of women’s cricket led by Claire Taylor, and featuring Beth Barrett-Wild, the ECB’s Head of the Women’s Hundred, Amara Carr, Middlesex Sunrisers and London Spirit player and Danni Warren (Regional Director of Women’s Cricket, Sunrisers).
"We must also play a lead role in the debate on the future of women’s and girls’ cricket"
MCC President Clare Connor said: “Days like today are extremely significant. It is important that the MCC recognises, shares and celebrates the rich and, in many ways, untold story of the history of the women’s game. We must also play a lead role in the debate on the future of women’s and girls’ cricket - a future where gender balance and more equal opportunity is the norm.
The exhibition in the Museum is breath-taking. It shines a light on the remarkable journey of women’s cricket, and I hope that by sharing the stories with the wider public, more women and girls will be empowered and inspired to pick up a bat or become fans or participate in our great game in another way.”
"The topics and conversations were both engaging and inspiring and today provided a platform for everyone involved in the women’s game"
Charlotte Goodhew, Collections and Programmes Manager, added:
"When I started planning for the symposium I wanted to invite discussion and debate and influence the narrative around women’s cricket and today’s event did that. After two years of postponements, it was great to finally see so many people from across the country here on International Women’s Day.
The topics and conversations were both engaging and inspiring and today provided a platform for everyone involved in the women’s game to continue to make progress in growing the sport in a whole range of areas for women and girls’.”
The Evolution of Women’s Cricket symposium was supported by the History Department at Royal Holloway, University of London along with many generous donors and lenders who have contributed to the exhibition.
The Evolution of Women’s Cricket exhibition runs in the MCC Museum until November 2022. For more information visit www.lords.org