Stephen J. Hewitt
Stephen J. Hewitt died prematurely of cancer on the 24th October 2014. He was 56. He was the second grievous loss to the Outcasts in 2014 following the tragic death of Keith Ambrey earlier in the year.
Stephen played for the GMC cricket team in the days before local government reorganisation and the abolition of the County Council in 1986. He continued to play for the reconstituted Outcasts after he found alternative employment with Rochdale Metropolitan District Council. However, when he moved jobs and home to the Bristol area his appearances were pretty much restricted to the Outcasts' annual tour of Dorset.
The records show that, altogether, he played 120 matches for the Outcasts post-86. He scored 332 runs in 76 innings, with a highest score of 27. He bowled 98 overs of spin, taking 16 wickets, with best figures of 2 for 18. He also took his place behind the stumps on more than one occasion, and even brought his own wicket-keeping gear with him.
Stephen was an enthusiastic and committed cricketer who was liked and respected in equal measure by his team colleagues. One of the achievements for which he will be remembered most fondly was hitting the winning runs in a game against the North West office of the Department of the Environment (as it was then) in the months leading up to the abolition of the GMC. It was a tense game, with the GMC playing against the organisation responsible for its ultimate demise. The scores were close going into the last over when Steve strode to the crease as another wicket fell. True to form, he made good connection with what might well have been the final delivery to get the boundary that GMC needed to topple their great rivals. It somehow epitomised Stephen's character. He could always be relied upon when required. He always gave his best. He never let you down. To commemorate his contributions to the Outcasts Cricket Club, Steve was posthumously awarded the prized 'Golden Duck' at the Outcasts' annual dinner in November 2014.
Away from the sporting arena, Stephen forged a splendid career at the interface between town planning and public health that was nationally recognised - see links below. He was greatly admired for his professional integrity, his wide knowledge and quiet intelligence, and for his strong principles.
In his private life he always supported independent businesses and avoided products and services provided by the major corporate interests wherever possible. He stood by his ideals of equality and fairness even when they were politically unpopular. He loved music and had a large collection of rock and jazz CDs. His backing for the underdog was reflected in his support for Northampton Town Football Club, his hometown team, and there will be more than one of his former friends and colleagues who will be taking an unexpected interest in the fortunes of 'The Cobblers' from now on.
He was a one-off and will be very deeply missed. Rest in Peace, Stephen.