THE DAUGHTER of a well-known Carlisle cricketer has paid tribute to her father Kevin Reynolds.

Kevin sadly passed away on Friday, September 1 at the age of 81 following a long illness.

The sportsman was renowned in the local community thanks to his 30-year cricket career which began in the early 1960s at Wigton Cricket Club before he moved to Carlisle. He would go on to also represent his county. 

News and Star: Kevin in his elementKevin in his element (Image: Supplied)

Cricket was not Kevin's only sporting passion as he also enjoyed a long career as a football referee and linesman, which included officiating a match between Carlisle United and Newcastle United in 1986 which featured Toon legends such as Peter Beardsley and Paul Gascoigne.

Away from sports, Kevin had a long career as a special constable for Cumbria Police which began in November 1969 and ended when he retired aged 50. 

However, in the late 1970s, he contracted a mystery illness that attacked his nervous system and muscles, the day after he had hit a century for Carlisle Cricket Club against Barrow.

Kevin's fight against this mystery illness 'which virtually paralysed him' was well documented in the Evening News & Star and Cumberland News, with the 'courage of Kevin' regularly covered until he had won his battle against the illness.

News and Star: Kevin's fight against the illness was covered in a June 1978 edition of the Evening News and StarKevin's fight against the illness was covered in a June 1978 edition of the Evening News and Star (Image: News and Star Archives)

Speaking about her father, Stacey Reynolds said that he will be 'greatly missed'.

She said: "Dad sadly passed away after a long illness last Friday.

"He had suffered so much over the last 10 years but always bounced back.

"He was so well known he knew everyone and everyone knew him, wherever we went someone always stopped to talk.

"He finally became a grandad in 2018 and again in 2023 to Bella and Freddie.

"He will be greatly missed.

"I would also like to thank all the staff at Riverwell Beck who looked after him over the past few years and the nurses and staff at A&E who nursed him in his final hours with so much dignity."

Kevin's funeral will be held on Thursday, September 21 at the Carlisle Crematorium and will be followed by a celebration of his life at Carlisle Cricket Club.