Roger Bird has been such an influential member of Timsbury Cricket Club for so long that it is difficult to envisage a future without him. He began playing for the club in the 1950s and has fulfilled nearly every position in the club both on and off the field. As a player he was a fearless and outstanding wicket-keeper and was still playing well into his seventies.
So much of his work, however, revolved around his encouragement for the young players in the club both as a youth organiser and umpire and as captain of the third and fourth elevens. His personality saw him develop a natural bonding with the youth who idolised him. For a number of years he was a manager of the Somerset County Cricket Club youth sides and he was proud to see a number of his protégés progress to play county cricket.
For more than thirty years Roger and his wife Yvonne spent nearly every Saturday evening during the season demonstrating their culinary skills in the clubroom kitchen. While other ex-players have drifted away Roger has given nearly seventy years service to the club that was such an important part of his life.
Club chairman Ben Hosford has contributed his own personal tribute:
It’s telling that every player playing cricket for Timsbury today, whether 15 or 50, as well as those who have gone before, will have fond memories of Roger, and will each have their own story to tell.
Whether it be cherishing the support offered from ‘long on’ with his beloved wife Yvonne as he did week in week out, enjoying the toasties and chips the two of them served from the hatch after games, the umpiring of so many u15 and u19 games, or watching Roger standing up to the stumps with the gloves on (as he did until as recently as 2015), putting his body on the line ball after ball.
Roger will be remembered as a club man that transcended the generations, who provided ongoing support, enthusiasm and guidance to all youth cricketers, was a welcoming presence to all our families and the village community and had an uncanny ability to generate a smile.
While we are so sad at his loss and will miss Roger dearly, we feel fortunate and proud to have known him and are thankful for all the good times.