Brother of T.P.Reynolds (Cambridge Town Club 1857-58).
A hard hitting tail end right-hand batsman with little defence, right-hand fast round-arm bowler with a break-back from the off and an easy action, later he was a slow underarm bowler.
His first professional engagement was with Charterhouse School in 1853 and 1854, then the M.C.C. in 1855. In 1856 and 1857 he was at Botesdale, Suffolk and in 1858 he toured with the United England Eleven and in 1859 and 1860 with the All England Eleven.
In 1861 his long association with the Manchester Cricket Club began. First as a ground bowler then ground manager. On 26th May 1870 the match between Lancashire and Surrey at Old Trafford was played for his benefit and on 25th November that year, at a committee meeting of the Manchester Club he was promoted to the offices of Acting Assistant Secretary, Collector and General Manager of the Manchester Cricket Club. He lived in a house adjoining the old pavilion until the new pavilion was built in 1894 and then reluctently moved nearby.
At the time of the 1881 Census he and his wife were living at 1 Stretford Villas, Stretford, with their son Frank William, aged 16, an apprentice to a cotton goods warehouse, a seven year old neice and one domestic servant.
In June 1908 complaints about the condition of the wicket were made after the Surrey match, during which Lancashire were twice dismissed for a total of just over 200 and defeated by an innings. According to the local press "Mr.Reynolds, in the language of the polite hairdresser, admits that it is getting a little thin in places." An enquiry was opened and the committee admitted that the staff was hopelessly inadequate for such a large ground, and undertook to improve the situation. Reynolds, at the age of 74, resigned, but at the Anuual General Meeting of the Lancashire County Cricket Club on 11th December 1908 he was voted £100 a year pension for life, and he and his wife were elected life members of the Club. Was Mary Reynolds the first lady member?
In addition to his sterling work on the ground Reynolds published three editions of collected scores of the Club, the 3rd edition of which, from 1864 to 1881, has recently been reprinted in a limited edition by Red Rose Books.
(Article: Copyright © 2004 Don Ambrose)
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