A MAN known by many for his love of sport, history and church has died aged 86.

Jim Standish moved from Durham to Stocksfield in 1960 and quickly became involved in village life.

He played for Stocksfield Cricket Club for many years, later becoming club secretary.

Meanwhile his love of hockey, which originated from an ice hockey hobby as a young boy, saw him become goalkeeper for Durham County then Tynedale hockey teams and finally join the LX Club – a team for over-70s.

Through the LX Club, he and his wife Anne travelled to destinations including Barcelona, Athens, South Africa and Kuala Lumpur for matches and tournaments.

With the time not taken up with his beloved sports, Jim spent his working life in teaching, including a stint as headteacher at Mickley First School before moving to a school in Gosforth.

He was passionate about local history and was the first chairman and founding member of Prudhoe and District Local History Society.

After retiring, he filled his time with researching and writing, and The Drumming of the Poss Sticks – a book capturing people’s memories of Mickley – was his first to be published.

His next book A Prudhoe Likeness was followed by A Prudhoe Reflection, showing old photographs of Prudhoe alongside current photographs.

After becoming a lay reader at a church in Durham, when Jim moved to Stocksfield he began services at St George’s Church in Mickley, and also spent some time at Bywell’s St Andrew’s Church, before returning to St George’s.

Anne said: “He was determined to reach his 60 years as a lay reader which he finished in June.

“They had a fantastic service for him at St George’s.

“He was delighted to reach 60 years; he was overwhelmed.”

She described him as a family man who “had time for everybody”. Jim died earlier this month leaving Anne, his children Rowan and John and grandchildren Olivia and Ethan.