THERE will be an empty seat when Shelley Cricket Club hold their AGM in the early months of 2010.
That will be the seat occupied every year, almost without exception, for the past six decades by Neville Taylor who passed away on September 28 at the age of 76.
Since taking his place in the club’s junior team, probably before he reached his teens, he has devoted his life to the Westerley Lane club.
On the field he was no mean cricketer earning the reputation as one of the club’s best-ever fielders.
The highlight of his playing career was being a member of the Shelley side which won a Central League Second Eleven championship in 1957. He went on to captain the side for many years going on to earn the title of ‘the man of everlasting youth’ in the club’s centenary brochure. Off the field he was a workaholic and until recently a permanent member of the club’s committee.
His forte was collecting subscriptions and it is exactly 50 years since he took on the role of subscription secretary, a position he held for five years.
After an absence of six years he was back in the job and held it for 14 years. He wasn’t finished yet because in 1987 he was back as subscription secretary on a temporary basis that lasted until 2003.
On his death he was still a trustee of the club. He will be a hard act to follow.
He was also a useful footballer in his younger days.
He lived and spent his entire working life within a 200 yards radius of his present home.
Mr Taylor was a village butcher by trade working from a shop just opposite his home, a few yards outside the Shelley boundary, in Shepley.
He always had a smile on his face making the weekly deliveries that started when he was still at school.
He leaves a widow, Joan, also a big worker for Shelley Cricket Club, who has been his wife for 51 years.