The club is sad to learn that its former Club Captain, Eddie Griffiths, sadly passed away last week in the Isle of Man. HIs funeral will be held on Thursday, 5th October at 2pm at Douglas Crematorium, IOM.
Eddie became a member of Eccles RFC in April, 1963. He began playing rugby as a 7 year old when he attended De La Salle prep school and later went on to recruit lads from De La Salle, Wardley Grammar and other local schools for the Colts team which was forming at Eccles RFC.
Being instrumental in setting up the Colts Section at the club, Eddie went on to become Eccles 1st XV Captain in 1968/69 season and 1976/77 season and served on both the general committee and also on the Grounds committee.
Eddie was mentioned in many match reports published in the Eccles Journal, in particular, this one from 5th October 1972 - "Eccles front row forward, Eddie Griffiths, and the slope of the pitch, were in many ways responsible for the Eccles 19-6 defeat at Burnage on Saturday, with Brian Griffiths as best man and Eddie Griffiths as groom, Eccles were forced to make many alterations in the pack”!
At the start of the 1976/77 season Eddie made amends, as reported in this headline “Fine start to the season. A 30 points to 16 win for Eccles and their new season's captain, Eddie Griffiths, over Burnage” and he continued to play his part in the successful team which went on to win the Griffon Plaque competition.
Eddie worked as a surveyor and this took him to Hong Kong for a number of years where he played for Valley Rugby Club. Their ground was positioned in the centre of the Happy Valley race course, sometimes playing matches on race days giving Eddie the opportunity to claim he played in front of a crowd of 80,000!
Eddie lived in Tyldesley and he left Eccles RFC in the late 1970's to play for Tyldesley, although he returned to Eccles for a number of commemorative games.
His work eventually took him and his wife, Elaine, to the Isle of Man, where he played a few games for the Vagabonds.
This Saturday, there are several players returning to the club for the reunion lunch who played alongside Eddie and will no doubt have many happy memories to share.
Team photo - 1977
Standing - Graeme Boocock, Ken Mathews, John Brunt, John Crowder, Jeff Crompton, John Whiteside, Colin Leigh, Bernard Collier.
Kneeling - Martin Cooke, Derek Pearson, Eddie Griffiths, Dave Hunt, Greg Smith, Dave Mallinson, Chris Sommerton.
Photo taken at the wedding reception of Eddie and Elaine Griffiths at Patricroft Conservative Club, 1972.
Back row - George Merton, Ernie Bradshaw, Neil Ainsworth, Chris Stonely, Paul Mellor, Tony Evans, Eddie Dawson.
Middle row - Mike Bateman, Eddie Griffiths, Brian Griffiths, Duncan Fraser.
Front row - Ray Cook, family members.