Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) is the world's oldest and most famous cricket club. Founded in 1787, it is a private members' club. It owns, and is based at, Lord's Cricket Ground near St John's Wood in north London. MCC was formerly the governing body of cricket in England and across the world. Most of its global functions were passed on to the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 1993 and its English governance was passed to the England and Wales Cricket Board at the same time.
The MCC laid down the laws of the game in 1788, and remains the copyright holder of the Laws of Cricket. It is well known throughout the cricketing world as an active club that is influential to cricket in general
MCC has 18,000 full members and 4,000 associate members. Members have special rights to use the Pavilion and other stands at Lord's for all matches played at the ground.
In order to join the waiting list of candidates for membership one must get the vote (of which each full member has one a year) of three members, and the additional sponsorship of a person on the List of MCC Sponsors (which consists of members of all MCC Sub-Committees; MCC Committee; MCC Out Match Representatives; and the Current, Past, and Designate President). As the demand for membership always is greater than the number of places available each year (there being just over 400 places in 2005), there is a substantial waiting list for Full Ordinary Membership, namely 18 years (although this compares favourably to the 30-year wait which was the norm in the 1920s). There are, however, ways to lessen the time it takes to become a full member. One may become an Umpire Member, Playing Member, or Out-Match Member (although this carries none of the privileges of membership, apart from being able to play for the club).
Alternatively, one may be awarded Honorary Life Membership, yet this is a very rare honour to be bestowed on someone. Current Honorary Life Members include Sir Garfield Sobers, Sunil Gavaskar, Henry Olonga, Andy Flower, Hashan Tillakaratne, Dickie Bird, David Shepherd, Aravinda de Silva, Alec Stewart and Rachael Heyhoe-Flint.
Lord's Cricket Ground (generally known as Lord's) is a cricket venue in St John's Wood, London. Named after its founder, Thomas Lord, it is owned by Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) and is the home of Middlesex County Cricket Club, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), the European Cricket Council (ECC); and until August 2005, the International Cricket Council (ICC). Lord's is often referred to as 'The Home of Cricket'.
Lord's today is not on its original site, being the third of three grounds that Lord established between 1787 and 1814. His first ground, now referred to as Lord's Old Ground, was where Dorset Square now stands. His second ground, Lord's Middle Ground, was used from 1811 to 1813 before being abandoned due to the construction through its outfield of the Regent's Canal. The present Lord's ground is about 250 yards north-west of the Middle Ground.
Lord's is home to the oldest sporting museum in the world