Chesterfield Cricket Lovers' Society

The photo shows Peter Pyemont, Niven Roper, Christopher Pyemont.
Photo courtesy of John Windle


And now for something completely different…………

Ex Headteachers Peter and Christopher Pyemont certainly achieved this with a distinctive, unconventional talk to CCLS members that could be better described as a performance or an entertainment.

Whatever the definition it left members thrilled with such a different evening which incorporated speech, drama, song, film, humour and ‘props’. Despite their long trip from Sussex on which they encountered serious delays they displayed an infectious love of the game and boundless energy.

The subject for the two brothers was ‘A History of the Ashes’, their presentation starting with the ‘birth’ of cricket and ending with the last Ashes series, of which we really did not wanted to be reminded.

A typical comment from the evening was, when describing the Bodyline Tour it was stated that it had ‘shifted cricket’s tectonic plates’.

Film footage of W G Grace, Harold Larwood, Bradman, Laker etc. were shown, with commentaries from amongst others, John Arlott who, when commenting on Bradman’s first ball in his last innings in an Ashes series said ‘ he plays back and gently hits the ball in the direction of the Houses of Parliament’. The next ball Arlott is rendered speechless for obvious reasons!

During the evening tributes were paid to another commentator, Christopher Martin – Jenkins who had attended the school the two brothers had taught at.

The Movietone News clip of Laker’s final two wickets at Old Trafford showed when the 19th wicket fell just gentle handshakes all round rather than the ‘high fives’ which may have been offered in modern times.

When the last ball of the 2005 Edgbaston Test was shown, Niven Roper was unable to comment on the question of if it was out. Of course it was?

In a span of 132 years there has been 320 Ashes matches of which Australia have won 128 (40%), England 103 (32%) with 89 (28%) being drawn.

A thoroughly enjoyable evening ended with great appreciation being shown by all present.