Like thousands of other Yorkshire lads, Tony Wood spent his boyhood playing cricket.

No matter that he lived in a little cottage on a steep hillside in Wellhouse; the game was the thing.

The cricket pitch he shared with school pals was created in a small ginnel, tucked away between the rows of weavers’ cottages, and the stumps were chalked on a wall.

So imagine his surprise when he returned to his home town 60 years on, and found the stumps still in place on the wall!

“They were still there, obviously repainted by some caring cricketer or family.

“We passed through Wellhouse to mark my 70th birthday, with my wife Jen and I touring my old haunts, and I was amazed to see the stumps still on the same wall.

“In this day and age it is good to know some old fashioned values still stand. The people in the houses there now probably have no idea how they got there”.

The young Tony lived at 78 Wellhouse with his mother Nora Wood and grandparents Herbert and Ann Wood, who ran the village pub known as The Cot for many years.

Wellhouse School, where young Tony Wood was a pupil
Wellhouse School, where young Tony Wood was a pupil
 

He went to the village school, playing games in the small playground with pals like Paul Haigh, then moved to Rawthorpe. and at the age of 15 joined the Royal Navy.

He said: “I remember turning up at HMS Ganges, the training school, with a cricket bat strapped to my holdall and having it taken away by the instructor. I never saw that bat again.

“But cricket was always a big love. I played at Bradley Mills as a youngster, played for the Medway team while in the Navy and club cricket in Kirkcudbright, Scotland, which is where I have lived for many years.

“I did 15 years in the Navy and then I joined HM Coastguard Maritime Search & Rescue, serving mostly in Scotland where we have lived for the last 33 years, until I retired.

“I have very fond memories of Wellhouse, and have returned from time to time, but never been able to actually locate my mother’s grave in the local cemetery”.