Interview with the secretary of the Mitcham Cricket Club, Julia Gault.
The King’s Head pub was renamed the Burn Bullock in 1975 by the owners Ind Coope. ‘Burn’ was the shortened name of its licensee, Burnett Bullock, who died in 1954. His widow carried on the pub business until she retired in 1975. The brewery renamed the pub in their honour.
He and his wife Lilian became licensees of the King’s Head on 20th January, 1941. They had previously been joint licensees of the Regent’s Arms in London’s West End. Her parents, Mr & Mrs Card, owned the baker’s shop across the road from the King’s Head. Burnett’s father was surveyor in the Mitcham Urban District Council.
(Source: EN Montague, pages 38-39 of Mitcham Histories: 1 The Cricket Green.)
From 300 Years of Mitcham Cricket, a historical record by Tom Higgs, published in 1985:
The former Secretary, Burn Bullock Snr. had produced a worthy son and Burn Bullock Jnr was to score his first century on the Green when only fifteen years of age. Two years later he was a regular member of Mitcham’s 1st XI. The War interrupted Burn Bullock’s cricket career but when he returned to Mitcham in 1919 he lopped the Club’s averages and played occasionally for Surrey 11s. Burn joined the Oval staff as a professional in 1921 but those were the vintage days of Surrey batsmen with the likes of Jack Hobbs, Andrew Sandham, Andy Ducat and Tom Shepherd available. Burn Bullock had few opportunities with the County side and had to content himself with Minor Counties cricket. He left the Oval in 1926 to become cricket coach on a Norfolk estate and in his first season there made 1500 runs and took 50 wickets before bringing the Norfolk side down to see his beloved Mitcham Green.
Three years later Burn Bullock returned south, became a licensed victualler, and in due course took over the King’s Head, next door to Mitcham’s pavilion. In addition to playing for Mitcham, Burn also skippered the powerful North and South of the Thames Licensed Victuallers XI and score some fifteen centuries with them. But excellent as was his playing ability it was for his outstanding service off the field that Burn Bullock is remembered in Mitcham. He served as player, committee member, Hon. Secretary and Match Secretary. Each year he brought the county side sown to the Green to play a charity match for the local hospital and raised substantial sums by this means. At the time of his death in 1954 Burn Bullock was one of the Club’s most distinguished Vice-Presidents.
From the Mitcham and Tooting Advertiser, 21st April 1954
Mr B. Bullock leaves £2,591
Mr Burnett Wedlake BULLOCK, licensee of the King’s Head, Mitcham, former Surrey cricketer, who died on 21st December last, left £2,591 gross, £2,134 net value. Probate has been granted to his widow Lilian J. Bullock, of the same address.
Lilian Bullock’s obituary was published in the Mitcham Cricket Club Yearbook for 1977.
The Germantown Cricket Club is the second oldest in the United States.
FUNERAL OF SOUTHERTON
On Monday afternoon the remains of poor James Southerton, the well-known Surrey bowler, were borne to their last place of rest in Mitcham Churchyard, the funeral attracting a large number of persons, who were well acquainted with the sterling qualities of deceased, to the little village green in front of the inn which Southerton tenanted during his life.
The Surrey County Cricket Club was represented by Messre C. W. Alcock, J. Wood, F. Gale, Dr Parrott, E. Garland, G. Wells, C. A. Stein, T. Mossendew, and others. The only one of the county eleven, as now constituted, present was Richard Humphrey, who acted one the pall-bearers, but there were several old players connected with Surrey to show respect to the memory their former comrade, among them J. Swann, W. Shepherd, and W. Mortlock.
The Mitcham Cricket Club, which Southerton was an active member, sent a strong detachment, including Dr Marshall, the president; Messrs Harbor, Compton, Harvey, and about 30 others; and old cricketers unconnected with Surrey, there were also present Edgar Willshier, K. Thoms, T. Mantle, and many others.
Half-past 4 o’clock was the hour appointed for departure of the funeral cortege from the house of the deceased, and very soon after that time the procession made a start. The lane dawn which the coffin passed to the parish church was lined throughout with residents of Mitcham, and the churchyard was already well filled before the service over the body had been completed. There could not have been less than 300 round the grave while the last part of the mournful ceremony was taking place, and doubt whether the pretty little burying-ground has ever held a larger gathering or formed the scene of more impressive picture. The following were told off to act as pall-bearers – R. Humphrey, R. Knight, E. Willsher, T. Sewell, R. Thome, F. Gale, T. A. Mantle, and F. Harwood. The service was conducted by vicar of Mitcham, the Rev. D. F. Wilson. M.A., and will be some little time before the village so closely identified with Surrey cricket will forget the imposing ceremonial witnessed on the occasion of Southerton’s funeral.
A meeting held subsequently at the King’s Head, Mitcham, to consider the advisability of establishing some memorial in remembrance of Southerton as a cricketer. Dr Marshall, the President of Mitcham CC, was the chair and there were in all about thirty present. It was resolved that a local committee be formed for the purpose of providing some memorial to the late James Southerton, and that the committee should communicate with the committee of Surrey County Club to ascertain its views of the character of such memorial.
Source: Bell’s Life in London and Sporting Chronicle – Saturday 26 June 1880 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
The Australian Cricketers at Mitcham.
On Monday last the sixth team of cricketers from the Antipodes came down to Mitcham by the kind invitation of the Green Protection Committee of the Mitcham Cricket Club, for a week’s preliminary practice, and put up as usual with their old friend Willie Southerton, of the Cricketers.
The weather on Monday was all that could be wished, and several hundreds of spectators assembled to welcome the Colonials. The team is composed as follows
Old members: McDonnell (captain), Blackham, Boyle, Bonner, Jarvis, Jones, Bannerman, and Turner.
New members : Trott, Ferns, Lyons, Edwards, and Worrall.
Through the energy and care of Guttridge, the ground man of the Mitcham Cricket Club, the team was provided with splendid wickets. Monday’s play was mainly confined to hard hitting, just to take the stiffness out of their joints, but on Tuesday they got down to regular work, and onlookers were able to form an opinion on the probabilities of the forthcoming season. The genial and courteous captain (McDonnell) shows his usual good form at the wicket, as does also the veteran Boyle. Blackham will undoubtedly be to the fore this season as a splendid wicket-keeper. Nothing finer in the way of wicket-keeping has yet been seen. Jarvis also shows his usual good form behind the sticks. Turner, according to this week’s work, shows promise of putting in some good bowling daring the season. Jones shows his usual good form. Bonnor will doubt improve, but at present shows want of practice through having wintered in England.
Of the new men, it may said that Trott shows exceptionally good form with the bat, and taken altogether the new comers may be depended on to give a good account of themselves during their stay. There has been some capital fielding exhibited during the week, although their chances in this direction have been somewhat limited owing to the eagerness of outsiders to send home the balls.
The week’s work may be briefly summed up thus : The old members show their usual good form, and the new men show great promise, and have done well on the present slow wicket. No reasonable doubt can entertained that taken altogether the team is one of the strongest that has yet visited the mother country. On Monday next they meet Mr. Thornton’s Eleven, when they may be expected to give good account of themselves.
Source: Croydon Advertiser and East Surrey Reporter – Saturday 05 May 1888 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
RIDING ON MITCHAM COMMON.
At Croydon County Bench, on Saturday. Jas. Plested, of Leighton-street, Mitcham-road was summoned for committing a breach of the Mitcham Common Conservators’ bye-laws, riding on a portion of the cricket club’s ground.—Defendant pleaded guilty; and expressed his sorrow.
— Mr. Thos. Harvey, captain of the Mitcham Cricket Club, said that on the 2nd inst. he saw defendant riding a horse on the club’s ground. When told to stop he did so, but asserted that he had as much right to ride on the ground as witness had walk over it. The ground was damaged.
— Defendant said he only bought the horse the same morning, and he got on its back it got the upper hand of him, reared, and ran to the common.
— Fined 16s. 6d., including costs.
Source: Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser – Saturday 27 September 1902 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
— Mr. W. W. Thomson, the honorary secretary of the Mitcham Cricket Club, calls our attention to the fact that John Bowyer, an old cricketer of no inconsiderable repute, who was born at Mitcham on June 18, 1790, and is, therefore, in his 80th year, is now residing in his native village without any means of subsistence, and unable to anything for his living.
John Bowyer first played for his county (Surrey) v. England at Lord’s, in July, 1810, and is one of the few men living who played against the following members of the old Hambledon Club (dissolved in 1791), viz.: William Beldham, Wells, Robinson, Thomas Walker. Fennex, and Lambert (the little farmer). He was a celebrated batsman (left-handed) in the days of those good cricketers, Lord F. Beauclerk, Messrs. W. Ward, E. H. Budd, G.Osbaldeston, Asshelon Smith, and others, who flourished between 1810-30, and he also took part in half a dozen of the “B’s v. England” matches at Lords. He last played in 1838, but still stands umpire in the village matches, as he has done for thirty-three years past.
An excellent photograph of this sterling cricketer has been published, and the Mitcham cricketers appeal to the cricketers of England to take a photograph of this fine old player, winch will be sent by post on receipt of eighteen postage stamps. Application can be made either to the honorary secretary, Mitcham ; Mr. Wm. Mortlock, cricketing outfitter, Waterloo Station, London. S.W.; or Mr. John Lillywhite, Seymour-street, Euston-road, London, N.W. The proceeds will be given to Bowyer. A few days’ delay may perhaps occur in forwarding photographs, as the orders for copies will be regulated by the demand.
Source: Sporting Life – Saturday 26 February 1870 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)