Memories of Fazeley, written by Joseph T. Hunter in August 2008 when he was 88 years old.

Cricket Teams

The Manor had a beautiful cricket pitch partly surrounded by a wood and it had a large dance hall and bar attached to the pavilion and changing rooms. Sir Robert ran two cricket teams, one for Saturday for villagers and one for Sunday partly composed of shopkeepers and two professionals paid and loaned from Warwickshire. I hardly missed watching a game on Sundays. I would come out of Sunday school, go straight to the ground and when the cricketers went off for tea, I would nip down the street for mine.

On Bank Holidays all day matches would be played and a large marquee would be pitched for refreshments, they were great days and good cricket was played.

The two umpires that stood were Mr Simkins of Atherstone Street and Mr Abel Cleaver of Drayton Road, both were personalities.

I saw Eric Hollies of Warwickshire play a great spin bowler who brought his arm over twice before releasing the ball. He bowled the great Don Bradman for a duck late on in Don's career , whilst on one occasion being knocked about in a Sydney test, a 'wag' on the famous hill shouted ' put a kangaroo on '.

I also saw 'Tiger Len Smith', the Warwickshire wicket keeper play. Also Harold Pearson the local West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper and Joe Bradford, the Birmingham City forward.

In later years Voce of the Larwood and Voce 'bodyline bowlers' kept a butchers shop in Bolebridge Street Tamworth.

Bobbies teams as far as I can remember them were

SUNDAY TEAM

  • Stan Bourne opening bat, shopkeeper of Bolebridge Street
  • Leon Cox opening bat and wicket keeper, Butcher
  • Shirl Godderidge batsman, had a pet shop in Bolebridge Street
  • Alan Beard all rounder, worked at Reliant
  • Harold Brierley fast bowler, worked at Tolsons
  • Harry Loder fast bowler, worked at Stoneware
  • Hastilow Captain Freeman occupation not known
  • Harry Dolphin spin bowler, Electricity Board
  • Len Johnson batsman, worked at Alders
  • Plus two professionals

SATURDAY TEAM

  • Sir Robert Peel
  • Harold Brierley
  • Edwin Brierley wicketkeeper, miner
  • Sam Brierley all rounder, miner
  • Harry Vickers all rounder, Tolsons
  • Tommy Sandall medium pace bowler, Tolsons
  • Harry Young slow bowler, Whateley Brick
  • Len Latham medium pace bowler, miner
  • 'Tommo' Thompson 11th man?, Reliant
  • Doug Beeston all rounder, L.M.S
  • Frank Egan left handed batsman, Alders

That is all I can remember.

Harry Young, my cousin, a single man, palled around with Bobby and Eddie Hicken, a painter. Harry was a slow bowler and on one occasion took the first nine wickets and Len Latham took the last one , but he was so poor a batsman that Sir Bobby gave him a pint of beer for every run that he scored.

Harry was also the captain of Kettlebrook Highfield football club and they won quite a few cups in the Twenties .