Northamptonshire County Cricket Club and Bedford School are thrilled to announce a new partnership, aimed at fostering cricket excellence through young cricketers across the school and county.

The collaboration formally brings together two esteemed institutions with a shared passion for the sport and, in doing so, will help promising young cricketers on their path to Northamptonshire County Cricket Club’s youth and academy teams. This strategic alignment aims to nurture talent and create a seamless transition for aspiring players.

The agreement will see Bedford School’s elite cricket pupils receive high-performance training; the school’s existing cricket programme will be enhanced with NCCC’s expertise, giving coaches and players access to specialised training sessions, skill development programmes, and first-class facilities. Boys will also get the opportunity to meet the players at the NCCC ground and even take part in some of their training sessions.

In return, Bedford School’s picturesque grounds and superb facilities, such as the indoor and outdoor cricket nets and school gym, will be used by NCCC’s age-group cricket programme, benefitting young cricketers from across the county.

There are already strong links between the two institutions with current NCCC players Emilio Gay and Gus Miller, both of whom are Bedford School alumni, working and encouraging the boys. For example, Emilio Gay recently made a ‘good luck for the season’ Instagram reel for the Bedford School boys.

Headmaster of Bedford School, Mr James Hodgson commented, “We’re delighted to officially join forces with NCCC. This partnership aligns perfectly with our commitment to holistic education and sporting excellence and together we will inspire the next generation of cricketers.”

Bedford School, founded in 1552, is renowned for its academic excellence, character development, and outstanding sports programmes. The school’s cricket heritage spans centuries, and this partnership adds a new chapter to its storied history.

Famously in 1904, Bedford School was the venue for a match against NCCC which doubled as a benefit game for Tom Brown, who had appeared for both counties during his long career. Admission was sixpence and members were asked to forgo their right to free entry on this occasion, to swell the fund for a popular bowler who later became a first-class umpire.

NCCC have previously staged two Sunday League matches at Bedford School in 1971 and 1982, incidentally both against Lancashire, as the two Lloyds – David and Clive – featured in both matches with the former hitting his maiden List A century in the first of the two contests.

In recent years the school has become one of the leading cricket schools in the country, with famous cricketing alumni such as Sir Alastair Cook leading the long list of boys who have gone on to play the game professionally. Other recent alumni include Alex Wakely, James Kettleborough, Charlie Thurston and Harry Gouldstone.