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Worldwide tributes to Shropshire cricketing stalwart Peter Byram

By Toby Neal | Wellington | News | Published:

Tributes have poured in from across the world to a major figure on the Shropshire cricket scene who was a stalwart of the Wellington Cricket Club for over 60 years.

Peter Byram, flanked by sons Gavin, on the left, and Adam.

Peter Byram, who also served as the sports editor of the Shropshire Star as part of a 42-year career in journalism, was a life member of the Wellington club and served as its general secretary between 1973 and 2018.

He died at his Wellington home on November 15, aged 75.

Peter Byram

After hearing of his illness, Yorkshire legend Sir Geoffrey Boycott sent him a personal message – Peter was a big Yorkshire cricket fan and had met Sir Geoffrey several times – and about 10 days ago England and Yorkshire batsman Jonny Bairstow took time during the England tour of New Zealand to send him a video message.

Peter's son, Gavin, said: "Dad loved it. Dad had cricketing friends all over the world, and we have had messages from all over the world.

"Cricket was his life. He said what cricket had given him was irreplaceable."

An online tribute on Wellington Cricket Club's Facebook site says: "He was a pivotal figure in the day-to-day running of the club and a key architect behind its development.

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"Younger members may know Pete best for his tireless work behind the mower – he became ground chairman in the early 2000s – but in truth this represented only a fraction of his vast contribution over six decades.

"Pete’s passing will leave a massive hole in the fabric of Wellington Cricket Club."

Marriage

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Born at Bradley Moor nursing home, in Haygate Road, Wellington, Peter only moved about 200 yards during his lifetime, living first with his parents in Haygate Road and then, on his marriage to Margaret, buying the house next door.

The couple celebrated their golden wedding anniversary on April 18.

Educated at Wellington Grammar School, football, cricket, and badminton were his main loves and as a youngster he played badminton in the All England championships.

He joined the old Wellington Journal & Shrewsbury News on May 28, 1962, and soon after the Shropshire Star was launched joined that paper on the sports desk, rising to become sports editor in July 1987.

At the time of his retirement in June 2004 he was sports editor of Shropshire Weekly Newspapers.

He was on the committee of Wellington's cricket club since the age of 18 and was the captain of the second team for many years.

Gavin added: "He gave up when me and my brother Adam started playing more. The three of us did get to play in the same team in one game, Wellington 3rds against Burwarton, when I was only about 10 and Adam 13, and he top scored out of the three of us, and decided to retire after that, going out on that note."

Peter proudly followed Adam and Gavin's cricketing progress as they played in Wellington's first team which won the Shropshire league and then won the Birmingham Premier League twice in a row. Gavin was captain, and Adam, vice captain. Another proud moment was joining them on the players' balcony at Lord's.

Of his four grandchildren, Elliot and Freya continue the family's Wellington cricketing tradition, with Freya playing for the girls' team.

Funeral details are being finalised.

Toby Neal

By Toby Neal
Feature Writer

A journalist in Shropshire for 40 years, mainly writes features and columns, especially about aspects of Shropshire history. Lives in Telford and is based at the Ketley headquarters.

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