Former Norfolk bowler Peter Walmsley, 87, is mourned

PUBLISHED: 08:52 13 April 2018

Tracey Moore, Peter Walmsley and David Armstrong (front row right) pictured at a Norfolk CCC reunion. Pictured: NORFOLK CCC

Tracey Moore, Peter Walmsley and David Armstrong (front row right) pictured at a Norfolk CCC reunion. Pictured: NORFOLK CCC


Peter Walmsley, one of the stars of the Norfolk cricket team of the 1950s, has died after a long illness at the age of 87.

A left arm seamer who was held in extremely high regard, he played for the county between 1950 and 1962 and took 329 wickets at an average of just 21.29.

His expertise with the ball once prompted Kent to offer him a first class contract, but he opted to stay in Norfolk and focus on his job as a manager at Norwich Union. As a young man he also served in the Royal Observer Corps.

Peter had a perhaps unique claim to fame, having started a match with a hat-trick and then finished it with another one when playing for his club Norwich Union against Dereham.

“Peter was as fine a bowler as seen in Minor Counties cricket,” said former county colleague Derek Godfrey. “I remember he once bowled Nottinghamshire Seconds out for a very low score. Most of them had first team experience and they could hardly put bat to ball.”

Former county chairman David Wild added: “He was certainly one of Norfolk’s greats, his figures speak for themselves.”

Mr Walmsley was born in Dunbar, Scotland, and moved to Norfolk just after the Second World War, settling in Hoveton, where he was living with his son Nick at the time of his death. His wife Rosemary passed away in 2004.

His funeral service will take place at St Helen’s Catholic Church, Hoveton, on Wednesday, May 2 (11.30am).

His passing completes a sad spell for Norfolk cricket, with fellow bowling great Tracey Moore and former secretary and president David Armstrong having also died in recent months.

That prompted the formation of a Norfolk CCC committee to raise funds for what will be a unique memorial for the much loved pair. The money will be used to commission two portraits by Ken Taylor, the former England, Yorkshire and Norfolk cricketer, who is now a renowned artist, with the plan being to hang them in the Norfolk Room at Manor Park during the summer festival.

Anyone wishing to donate should contact one of Ted Wright, David Wild, Chris Gillham, Alan Ponder, Robin Huggins or Norfolk treasurer Roger Claxton, with cheques to be made payable to NCCC.

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