Cricket legend who played for 60 years finally leaves the wicket...

Len Norcliffe, 75, who died on January 2. Here he is shown with his Veterans Golf Trophy. He was a member of Stainland Cricket Club and played cricket for Stainland Cricket Club for 60 years.
Len Norcliffe, 75, who died on January 2. Here he is shown with his Veterans Golf Trophy. He was a member of Stainland Cricket Club and played cricket for Stainland Cricket Club for 60 years.

TRIBUTES have been paid to a local cricketing legend who died this month.

Leonard ‘Len’ Norcliffe, died, aged 75, at Marsden Gate Farm, Sowood, Stainland.

At 14, Len made his debut for Stainland Cricket Club and would go on to play for 60 years – eventually being made honarary president and affectionately known as “Len Babe”.

He was born on the farm in 1936 to Percy and Maud and had four brothers and sisters who all worked together on the farm.

Aged 18 Len, of Hullen Edge Lane, did his National Service with 42nd Field Regiment at Barnard Castle, Durham.

After completing his service he worked on the farm before joining Marshalls Construction, in Elland, in 1962, until his retirement in 2001.

Len married Val in 1964 and had three children, Helen, Patricia and Peter – who sadly died shortly after his birth.

Helen, 44, said: “He was just the kindest, most generous man in the world.

“He had time for everyone and was great with children.”

Len was also a member at Outlane Golf Club where he was known as ‘Len the Putt’.

He was an avid traveller and said his favourite place was Tobago,

The funeral will be at Park Wood Crematorium on Monday, before a wake at Outlane Golf Club.

Patricia, 45, said: “We can’t put into words how proud we both are to have such an amazing dad and how much it means to us that our daughters all got to spend so much time with him.

“When we had children he always asked if we’d finally had one who would hold a cricket bat.”