Family’s tribute to cricket-mad Phil

Phillip Hamer
Phillip Hamer

A family have paid tribute to a ‘one of a kind’ cricket stalwart after he lost his battle with motor neurone disease last week.

Phillip Hamer, 65, of Elland, was born in 1949 and spent his early years in Ripponden before his family moved to Barkisland.

A former pupil of Barkisland Junior School and Ryburn Valley High School, Phillip - nicknamed ‘The Sheriff’ - trained as a plumber at the former Percival Whitley College from the age of 16 before spending 38 years working at the Century Dyeing Company in Elland.

After marrying, Phillip and wife Josie went on to have two children - Clare and Rachael.

Phillip’s family said: “He was bubbly, unique and a one-off - a real character. He loved his kids and was very family orientated.”

Throughout his life, Phillip was a passionate fan of cricket and had stints playing in Barkisland, Greetland, Copley and Blackley.

He was an official member of Blackley Cricket Club and managed their under-11 team for 13 years, was a Halifax Cricket League umpire and was also a pioneering member of the group who set up the Halifax Sunday Cricket League.

Phillip also supported Halifax RLFC and played rugby with Greetland All Rounders and football with Ryburn United..After taking semi-retirement, Phillip was a school crossing patrol warden for nine years, a school lunchtime supervisor at Elland CofE School, a community transport volunteer and a volunteer for Age UK.

Phillip was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in March - he spent his final months being cared for at home by his wife Josie and passed away peacefully surrounded by family.

The funeral will be held on November 19 at All Saints Church, Elland, from 1.45pm, followed by a cremation at Park Wood Crematorium at 3pm and a celebration of Phillip’s life at Blackley Cricket Club.