The ’50s Boys

The idea for forming the ’50s Boys came to Paul Nihill M.B.E. in 2007 when at the opening of the Paul Nihill M.B.E. hall at the Sir Philip Game Centre he realised that amongst those present was the SPG winning team of the 1959 Croydon Youth Cross Country Championship: Stan Rogers (1st), Paul Nihill (2nd), John Flynn (3rd) and John Quinn (7th). In 2009 he organised their first reunion at the Alma Tavern. The winning squad was present together with several other rivals from the 1950s including Mickey Mead and Jack Seymour, both boys’ club runners.

With the help of Mickey Mead, Paul set about tracing the Surrey County NABC team that travelled to Manchester in April 1957 to contest the National NABC Cross Country Championship. They located six of the eight competitors from the two teams (Junior/Senior). They being Steve Warzee (3rd) and Mickey Mead (13th) from the Juniors and Mike Hindle (6th), Jack Seymour (10th), Paul Nihill (69th) and John Quinn (94) from the Seniors. Their trip to Manchester was all paid for and for the majority of the boys it was probably the furthest any of them had travelled. It was for Paul and the majority of the other boys a big deal. The second reunion in 2010 saw five of the six Manchester 1957 boys in attendance. The only one who could not make it was Mick Kindle who lived way down in Devon.

The 2011 reunion got together the first four Surrey/Croydon boy race walkers: Paul Nihill (1956), Peter Selby (1957), Dave Delaney (1957) and Richard Miles (1957). Few kids tried race walking in those days. Their first four reunions were held at the Alma Tavern, not a hundred yards from where Paul was brought up in the war years.

The 2013 reunion took place at The Orchard on Cherry Orchard Road, near East Croydon station. The 2014 reunion celebrated the 60th anniversary of Stan Rogers (1st), Jack Seymour (3rd), Mick Hindle (5), and Paul Nihill (6th), all competing against each other for the first time in the 1954 Surrey NABC Cross Country Championship at Tattenham Corner in May 1954.

Whilst they started out as the ’50s Boys they welcome everybody to their reunions including local veteran road runners and veteran race walkers.

Email the club at contact@spgcentre.co.uk for further details

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