Daily Archives: 03/27/2011

Peter Wight honoured by Somerset

Peter Wight honoured by Somerset.

Peter Wight (left) is pictured with Roy Kerslake 

Somerset’s second highest ever run scorer Peter Wight was back at the County Ground on recently to watch the T20 game against Kent during which he was inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Between 1953 and 1965 the right hand batsman played in 321 first class matches for the Cidermen in which he scored a total of 16965 runs at an average of 32.75, which included 27 centuries with a highest score of 222 not out against Kent at Taunton in 1959.Now a very sprightly and trim 80 year old Peter was born in British Guiana explained how he came to play for Somerset. “I had just arrived from the West Indies, from British Guiana that was, and played as an amateur in the Central Lancashire League.” “I came down to have a two week holiday with my sister at Woolavington near Bridgwater where Bill, my brother in law, said why didn’t I go and have a trial with Somerset and he took me down the first day- but it rained.”

Peter Wight went on: “The coach asked me to come back the next day and I said that I would try but it might be a bit difficult because I had to travel by bus. I did come back and within five minutes of watching me batting in the nets he brought me out a contract – which at first I didn’t accept.” “However soon after that he asked me to play for the Seconds in a match against Gloucestershire and after then he asked me to play against Australia.”

“I bagged it in the first innings but then I got a hundred not out in the second and that was the start of it.” How did he feel about being inducted into the Hall of Fame. “It’s an honour to have been made a member of the Somerset Hall of Fame, which I don’t think I deserve but I am very willing to accept it. I enjoyed the time that I was here and unfortunately I couldn’t go on forever but I had a great time a loved every moment.

The Somerset crowd were magnificent then and they still are today.” Peter Wight also talked about some of the changes that had taken place since he first started back in 1953. “Compared to the way things were when I first arrived here back in the 1950’s I can’t recognise the place it, the changes are unbelievable. In fact it’s 15 years since I last umpired here and I don’t recognise it even from then, but it is absolutely marvelous what has happened.

Despite all of the changes the County Ground has still got that same atmosphere.” “Its been wonderful to be back here and I have been amazed by the number of former players including Roy Smith, Mervyn Kitchen and Roy Kerslake. A lot of other people have recognised me and come up to say hello.” “I have just got so many fond memories of the place.

I remember when I first started that they had the dog track surrounding the ground here and then there was Cecil Buttle the groundsman who used to look after us.” He continued: “When I played we changed over in the Old Pavilion where there wasn’t any heat so we were always trying to keep warm and there were splinters in the floorboards.” “We had to travel by train to away matches and sometimes you wouldn’t arrive in a place until 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning and then have to go out and field all day.”

During his time on the staff Peter Wight lived in Taunton but after he left he moved up to Bath where he opened an indoor cricket school. In addition the former Somerset batsman also had 29 years on the first class umpires list before he retired in 1995.