Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has today announced that 134 women have been elected this year as Full Members of the Club. This is the biggest number of female Members the Club has elected in its history, and since the vote was passed to admit women to membership of MCC in 1998.
MCC now has a total number of 645 women Members, including 217 Full Members and 69 who have been made Honorary Life Members of the Club, as a result of their outstanding service to the game. There are currently 1,004 women on the waiting list for Full Membership, including 359 women who have been made Associate Members and MCC is keen to see this number continue to increase.
The first cohort of women elected in 1999 were all Honorary Life Members, while in 2017, 37 Honorary Life Members were elected at once – all of whom had enjoyed exceptional international careers representing various countries including England, Australia, India, New Zealand and Ireland. This was in the same year that England and Wales hosted the Women’s Cricket World Cup, with the final taking place at Lord’s and the England team winning.
It is the second successive year that MCC has been able to welcome a significant influx of new female Members, with 2018 signalling the first occasion when women who joined the waiting list back in 1998 graduated to Full Membership of the Club.
Current MCC Members include former England captains Charlotte Edwards and Clare Connor (now Head of Women’s Cricket at ECB) and fellow former England players Claire Taylor (who also serves on the MCC Committee), Isa Guha (who has moved into cricket commentary) and Eileen Whelan Ash (who at the age of 107 is the oldest living international cricketer).
Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge and the Right Honourable Theresa May MP are both also Full Members.
Guy Lavender, Chief Executive & Secretary of MCC, said: “This is yet another milestone in the history of the Club and we are thrilled to be able to welcome our new women Members to MCC. I am pleased with the progress we are making and recognise there is still plenty to do. We will continue to strive to increase female representation within MCC and to support the women’s game as a whole.”
Claire Taylor, former England cricketer and MCC Committee member said: “MCC has played a big part in women’s cricket over the last few years. What a great year to become one of the new MCC women Members: a packed schedule at Lord's with men's World Cup games, an England v Australia Test and a Test match against Ireland to look forward to. We are keen to see this list expand as MCC becomes a more diverse club, with an incredibly exciting future.”
This significant increase in the number of female Members comes at a time when MCC is undertaking a number of initiatives designed to encourage a growth in women’s cricket, particularly through the Club itself, including:
New Honours Boards
In February, MCC oversaw the installation of new Honours Boards in both the home and away dressing rooms at Lord’s. Now included in the milestones and achievements recognised are centuries and five-wicket hauls at Lord’s in One-Day Internationals in both men’s and women’s matches.
MCC World Cricket committee
In March, MCC’s World Cricket committee announced its unanimous backing for the inclusion of women’s T20 in the next Commonwealth Games, taking place in Birmingham in 2022.
MCC Main Committee
MCC’s new Committee Members include Vicky Griffiths, who has been re-elected to serve on the MCC Committee from 1st October 2019, increasing the number of women on the Main Committee to three, the highest in the Club’s history.
Women’s Cricket Day
This season’s MCC Women’s Cricket Day on 29th May 2019 will see Lord’s host the London Cup fixture between Middlesex Women and their Surrey counterparts. Last year’s inaugural MCC Women’s Cricket Day was marked by Middlesex Women making their debut appearance on the Main Ground at Lord’s and this year will be the first time a competitive women’s county fixture has taken place at the Home of Cricket.
Middlesex Performance Academy
The MCC and Middlesex Performance Academy for Women and Girls is now in its third year of operation, supporting players aged between 16 and 24 and providing a link between county age-group cricket and the higher end of the development pathway.
MCC’s Community Team is set to launch a league for both boys and girls for Secondary School students from years 7 and 8 at schools in Westminster, with the aim of increasing interest in the game locally to Lord’s.
How to join MCC