Peter Griffiths (1923-2014)

Peter Griffiths – 24th October 1923 – 22nd August 2014

‘Come on M E R S E Y’. ‘Make him part.’ Familiar words to anyone watching from the sideline at Heaton Mersey over the past sixty years. Peter first played lacrosse at Woodhouse Grove School near Bradford in the 1930s. He kept up his links with The Grove in later years taking Mersey teams to play Old Grovians in what turned out to be incredibly sociable occasions, beginning in the Stansfield Arms across the road from the School.

Peter’s adult playing career was entirely devoted to Heaton Mersey, being a key member of the team that won the Senior Flags three times in the 1950s. He played for Lancashire and also captained a North of England President’s team against a visiting Johns Hopkins side in 1958.

Peter was known for his enthusiasm and his vigorous approach to the game. Despite being no more than 5’6” tall he would take on all comers from his position at the heart of the defence with his determined “They shall not pass” attitude.

He went from Mersey 1st team to the “A” team in 1965 and captained them to success in the 1967 Junior Flags Final. As he dropped further down the teams he gathered players around him to make sure of getting a game every Saturday. As a result Mersey formed a “D” team and even went on to an “E” team. Peter played a hard and uncompromising game, but never with malice and was always the first to shake hands at the final whistle and “to buy his man a drink”.

His massive appetite for lacrosse culminated in a game between Mersey and Stops to celebrate his 80th birthday. Peter stayed on the pitch for the entire duration of the game – and still had plenty of energy for post-match celebrations in the old Mersey clubhouse which he loved so much. He was a true sportsman and lived life to the full.

By Stuart Galloway

Funeral Arrangements: Stockport Crematorium Rowan Chapel – Friday 5th September 2014 at 10.45am Wake: Heaton Mersey Club