A dedicated former cricket groundsman who tended the wicket in Padiham’s championship winning season has died aged 89.
Frank Aldred, of Oat Street, was responsible for Padiham Cricket Club’s pitch when the senior team won the Ribblesdale Cricket League title in 1995.
Father-of-two Frank held the position as groundsman for around a decade at the club’s Arbories Memorial Sports Ground home.
The life-long Padiham fan, who supported the club since its current home at the Arbories was created in 1948, followed the team to every game home and away until around 18 months ago when he became ill.
Frank died peacefully in hospital with his family by his side on May 10th.
Son Steven said: “He was a really genuine bloke. He was really caring. He got on with everybody. He was really dedicated to what he did.
“He has always been a fan of cricket. It was one of his great loves – especially Padiham where he was born and bred.
“He has been a lifelong supporter. He was there right from the very start. He watched the club develop and grow.
“When he retired aged 62 he became the groundsman. He was groundsman when the team won the league in 1995.
“He followed the team everywhere home and away. It made his day when Padiham won and Read lost.”
Frank was the oldest of five children and married his wife Mary (85) who he met while working as a cobbler in the Padiham Co-Op.
He was a radar operator in the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Phoebe during the Second World War.
Frank had a 30 year career as a cobbler before working in a skilled trade at Lucas for 17 years.
He played cricket for Padiham Co-Operative but he main passion was watching Padiham Cricket Club play.
When he retired at 62 he took up being a groundsman at Padiham for around a decade.
He is survived by wife Mary and children Susan and Steven.