Felsted Named One of Country’s Best Cricket Schools

Felsted has been selected by the world’s longest established cricket magazine for its list of the country’s top 100 state and independent schools for the sport.

The judging panel for The Cricketer’s Schools Guide 2024 considered hundreds of UK schools and chose the best based on their commitment to cricket in the curriculum, facilities, fixtures and coaching.

Felsted, the independent day and boarding school for 1,000 girls and boys in north Essex, is included in the Guide as one of the top 100 senior schools but also listed are the top 50 prep/junior schools and the top 20 all-girls schools for cricket in the UK.

“Cricket is very much an integral part of sport at Felsted, so it is very gratifying for the school to be recognised by The Cricketer,” said Felsted’s Director of Cricket Jason Gallian. 

"We are consistently providing pathways into professional cricket for the most talented young players alongside encouraging pupils of all ages and abilities to be involved and enjoy the game," commented Felsted’s Head of Girls’ Cricket Lissy Macleod.

Felsted’s first cricket pitch was opened in 1805 and since then the school has produced many first-class and international cricketers, notably Derek Pringle (Essex and England), Nick Knight (Essex, Warwickshire and England), John Stephenson (Essex, Hampshire and England), and current professional players Jordan Cox (Essex, Kent, England U19), Grace Poole (Essex), Emma Jones (Essex) and Jessica Olorenshaw (Essex). Director of Cricket at the school is Jason Gallian (Essex, Nottinghamshire and England). Felsted’s Head of Girls’ Cricket is Lissy Macleod, who plays professionally as captain of the Berkshire county side, Sunrisers and for Welsh Fire in The Hundred.

Cricket is hugely popular at the school with girls and boys introduced to the sport at the age of eight in Felsted Prep. The Prep School provide competitive cricket opportunities for all children from Years 4-8 against other schools. The U13 boys field five times each week and the U13 girls, whom have been Essex Indoor Champions for the past two years, have four teams. Further teams include U12, U11, U10 and U9 A-C teams for both boys and girls.

Coaching continues throughout the school and there is a full fixture list for the boys’ 1st, 2nd and 3rd XIs and the U14 and U15 A and B teams, as well as the girls’ 1st and 2nd XI, and U14/15 A and B teams. Every year a match is played against an MCC team on the school’s famous main pitch - ‘The Front’ - and Felsted also competes in the national T20 competition.

“Our aim at Felsted is to widen access to cricket for many more boys and girls and we are proud to be a Performance Hub for regional women’s cricket hub the Sunrisers, running regular coaching sessions. It’s such a great sport and we are excited to be developing more and more young players,” commented Felsted’s Head Chris Townsend.

Felsted offers elite pathways for talented athletes, which include individualised training and nutrition programmes. Indeed, Felsted’s dedicated teaching and coaching team with a number of current or retired elite athletes, along with additional sporting partnerships and close connections with professional clubs including Sunrisers Women’s Cricket, Saracens Rugby, London Pulse and Mavericks Netball, coalesce to challenge pupils of all abilities, encouraging a healthy attitude to fitness and exercise. 

Felsted School recently won Boarding School of the Year 2023 at the TES Schools Awards in June. To learn more about cricket at Felsted, visit www.felsted.org/cricket.