HE might have been best-known as an astronomer, but cricket also played a huge part in Sir Patrick Moore’s life.
And now Selsey’s most famous resident’s name will live on forever at the cricket club he served for nearly half a century.
Selsey Cricket Club have renamed their HQ the Sir Patrick Moore Pavilion to honour the service he gave them as a player and secretary and for raising the profile of the club through his own fame.
Local dignitaries including Selsey Town Council chairman Mike Beal gathered to at the cricket ground on Tuesday to see a board unveiled to mark the renaming, and while they were there, one of the executors of Sir Patrick’s will turned up with cricket equipment - including his old bat - that they wanted the club to have.
Cricket club president John Reeve said the event was a fitting tribute to their old friend, who died last December.
“The nice thing is Patrick actually helped construct this pavilion,” said John. “It was originally a classroom at a private school in Selsey and when the school closed, the classroom was given to us. It was dismantled and then put back together here - and Patrick mucked in and helped.”
There are plans for a new building serving the cricket club and neighbouring Selsey Football Club and when that goes ahead, Sir Patrick’s name will go with it. But for now, the club are delighted to have honoured the Sky At Night legend.
“Sir Patrick only packed up playing in the late 1990s, and then he carried on as secretary and scorer,” said John. “He was a big influence on the whole club - he mentioned us on TV or radio whenever he could, and he got some other famous names involved - like when he got Tony Greig to help one of our players who was 6ft 6in tall and was having trouble finding kit that fitted.”
Sir Patrick’s dear friend Brian May, the Queen guitarist, sent the club his best wishes for Tuesday’s ceremony.
Further tributes to Sir Patrick are planned by the club and the wider Selsey community are planned in the future, including a blue plaque at his former house.