Banks Sports and Cultural Club was founded in 1964 by Mr. Ian Clarke in association with Bob Pinder, Kenrick Nurse, Cosbert St.Hill, Roy Johnson, Leon Brewster and other employees of the company. Mr. Ian Clarke was, at that time, the manager of Banks Breweries Limited, the company which brews the award winning and internationally recognized beer, "Banks". Banks Breweries Limited founded three years earlier has developed into one of the best-managed and most successful companies in Barbados; it is part of the Barbados Shipping and Trading group of companies, the largest private conglomerate on the island.
The Company and the clubhouse are located in Wildey, St Michael, very close to Bridgetown. The ground itself is one of the best in the island. The club started it cricket days in the Second and Intermediate divisions, the lower league competitions. It dominated these to such an extent that it quickly gained promotion to Division one in 1973.
The club got its first taste of glory at the highest level in Barbados winning the Division one Championship in 1978. Banks repeated that success the following year in 1979 and again in 1986. In the interim, due to the ageing and exodus of several of its leading players, the club suffered a slum in its fortunes in the last three years however, the club has shown signs of recapturing the glory days and finished second in the league last year after leading for a great part of the season.
The sports club has, in its short history, produced some very outstanding players. The most illustrious of these being the late Malcolm Denzil Marshall, one of the greatest fast bowlers the world has seen. Others are Cordon Greenidge, arguably the finest opening batsman of all time and Vanburn Holder, a fast-medium bowler, who represented the West Indies with distinction in the seventies.
Banks Sports club has also produced several players good enough to represent their country at the highest level. Arnold Cilkes, a member of the touring party represented Barbados in the early eighties as an opening batsman. His appearances were limited due to the presence of Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes, the established Barbados and West Indies opening pair. He is best remembered for a magnificent one hundred and four (104) e first innings and seventy-five (75) in the second innings against the touring Australians in 1984.
Clyde Beckles, who recently passed away, represented Barbados in late 1970's as a medium fast bowling all rounder. Hubert "Ellis" Brathwaite a prolific and classy middle order batsman represented his country in the late 1970's as well.
The most recent member to represent Barbados have been Barry Callender, a prolific, ebullient batsman and holder f the record for he most runs in a single division one season (919). He is another a member of the touring party. His appearances for some reason were limited to a couple of one-day games. Most recently, Michael Maynard, age twenty-four made his debut for Barbados against South Africa "A" in a one-day game.
George Brathwalte is perhaps the best and most prolific batsman not to have played for Barbados and the West Indies. He is a member of the touring party and those privileged to see him bat, even at age ~8 will surely see a real class act. He has been playing for Banks since 1966.
The club over the years has been represented with distinction by members such as Garcia Atkins, the late Cohn Burke, Richard Holder, Charles Griffith, Len Howard, Leson Brewster, Hendy Bowen, Luther King, Tyrone Marshall, Ranny Sealy, Henderson Roach Leon 'cheese' Bryan, Tyrone Roberts and Adrian Ashby to mention a few.
In 1994 the club's constitution was amended so that non-employees of Banks Breweries could join the Club. Since then, many ladies and others not employed by Banks have joined the organization. We are hoping to diversify the activities of the Club to include sports other than cricket in the immediate future. It is hoped that this historic tour will be a catalyst for the club' s expansion and development into the best of its type in Barbados.