Cricket Memorabilia

The Wisden Collectors’ Club was launched to offer members information, possibly guidance and a platform on as many things possible in connection with Wisden

Our members and visitors to this site will also have other cricketing memorabilia and we feel that if help is needed to ascertain value or to find out more about a particular item or items then we are only pleased to offer any guidance we can

Many WCC members collect items as well as Wisden Cricketers Almanacks and we will try and help with any particular query on any aspect of memorabilia. Also, over the years members of the WCC have built up a reliable and trustworthy relationship with many in the world of cricketing memorabilia and if we can’t help, we, with your permission, will make enquiries on your behalf. All undertaken in the strictest confidence

Whether you have a bat signed by the Lancashire CCC winning side of 2011, a letter from WG Grace or an original Britcher I am sure the WCC can help you…contact

Britcher, even rarer than an 1875 Wisden original

Samuel Britcher was the first MCC scorer and between 1790 and 1803 he gathered together scores which, together with an additional volume covering 1804/05, were published in 15 small books over that period. They were the first books of scores and are extraordinarily rare a total of only 52 copies (in total) being known to exist.

At auction in 2005 a shade under 100,000 pounds each was paid for two of the elusive volumes and hefty if less spectacular sums for two more. For some editions only one copy is known to exist so it goes without saying that a full set is now, for any mere collector, unattainable whatever wealth that collector may possess.

The pamphlets are around 30 pages each. There is no narrative content whatsoever, the scores are rudimentary and the players, and indeed many of the teams, have wholly unfamiliar names.

Autographs/Signature/Letters

The word ‘autograph’ is made of two Greek words ‘auto’ and ‘graphos’ and it means ‘self-writing’. Anything written by oneself is an autograph be it a single word or many words and does not have to be signed. Thus signature is certainly a form of autograph. But autograph does not necessarily mean only signature.

Just as hobby of collecting Stamps is called Philately, collecting of coins is called Numismatics, collecting match-labels is called Phillumeny, the hobby of collecting autographs is known as Philography which means love of writing.

Autograph includes letters, documents and manuscripts written or signed by the notable and distinguished personalities. Many a time these letters, documents and manuscripts form a base of history and literature. They are the most intimate relics of the great celebrities.

Letters sometimes tell us about the character and attitude of the person towards life and when it comes to cricketing personalities any form of correspondence can offer an insight into a bygone era. With such an interest in cricket a Bradman note after the Bodyline series or a letter from WG from any year has significance.

Knowing what is or what is not a signature of value is not uncommon. For instance the abundance of signed memorabilia by today’s cricketers makes them in many ways of little or no value and although this is a generalisation, any autographs, signatures or letters from pre World War Two will be of greater value than later.

Signed cricket bats are not just a modern day marketing tool, they have been around for many years. One of our members has a cricket bat signed by the Bodyline players of both Australia and England, this is not only rare but valuable. Latter day signatures on bats are exceedingly common, so the value is diminished.

The WCC has some notable Philography collectors and we will only be too glad to help in any way we can if you require any guidance at all.