A room full of old friends, teammates and fans gathered in the old clubhouse in Accrington
How the team would assemble at Broadway by the Odeon cinema, and take the double decker Corporation bus to away games in neighbouring valleys - Bacup, Todmorden, Rawtenstall – which seemed like the other end of the world.
How Sir Wes took all 10 wickets on two occasions: at Bacup, all-out for 28 and at Burnley who mustered 57 after Sir Wes had scored 59 in his own team’s total of 117. (Wesley Winfield Hall was frequently at the top of the order.)
For his own part, Sir Wes discusses a vulnerability which was perhaps not always appreciated amid the laughs and camaraderie. It was at this club that he doubled his run-up, having concluded that bowling off about 18 yards never provided the rhythm which fast bowlers obsess about.
‘As a fast bowler you’re afraid of failure,’ he says. ‘But I found out in Accrington that failure is not one cataclysmic event. It’s a succession of small things that grow into something big if you don’t actually learn from them. It applies to life, too.’
The visit ends with mutual understanding enhanced and new connections made. Never before has the Accrington Cricket Club pavilion stood to applaud the Barbados High Commissioner to the UK, though the young incumbent of that position, Guy Hewitt, helped make the trip happen.
‘Wes, thanks for caring. Thanks for coming back,’ are Lloyd’s closing words and before the man in question has folded his frail limbs into the car which pulls away, he, too, has contributed to this life-affirming demonstration of what a power for good sport can be.
‘I used to think I knew every blade of grass at Accrington and now I’ve found out that I did,’ he says. ‘I just so loved that. The feeling that came back. Even though I can’t walk well now, I think in my spirit I could take off on my run-up and get a few wickets like I used to do. Thank you. I don’t think you could ever envisage what this has meant to me.’