OUR recent stories regarding the cricket merger between Southend-on-Sea with the Ekco, Monarchs and Trojans clubs, continue to attract interest among our readers.

Brian Smeeton has sent us this old picture of a local cricket team lining up outside the Queen’s Hotel, but he has no idea who they are.

The team includes ex-Southend United soccer chairman Frank Walton in the back row who Mr Smeeton recognises from watching Blues play at the old Grainger Road Stadium.

Away from cricket, the features have jogged the memory of former Ekco athlete “Eddie” Mount who was a member of the EK Cole athletics team that won the Essex Business Houses AAA championships five times.

He sent in this picture, in which he is third from left alongside Derek Cole, son of the company’s founder, which was taken in 1953.

On this occasion the event was held in the grounds of EK Cole in Priory Crescent.

“Eddie” will be among those attending the reunion of former employees of the EK Cole Company at Southend Museum in Victoria Avenue this Wednesday from 3-6pm.

Derek Cole and his sister will be among those attending.

Said Mr Mount: “We had a very strong athletics team in those days.

“Although it was billed as the Essex Business Championships it was in every sense the full county championships as most of those who ran those days were appearing in business club colours.”

Mr Mount joined EK Cole back in 1941 and returned after Second World War service and stayed with them until the late 1950s.

Back to the subject of cricket, Southend Cricket Club secretary Baiju Solanki has sent us a copy of the scorecard of probably the most famous match ever at their Southchurch Park ground.

It happened back in 1948 when the visiting Australians scored 721 in a day in their match with Essex with the legendary Don Bradman leading the way with 187.

If you recognise our mystery cricket team, have memories of Southend, Ekco Monarchs or Trojans club or remember Bradman’s great day at Southchurch, ring Dick Marshall on 01268 469403 or e-mail dick.marshall@nqe.com.