UNSUNG heroes from the Parker family have retired after playing a possible record innings for Oulton Park Cricket Club.
After 80 years of preparing the traditional matchday teas the family have put away their butter knives and tea cups for the last time.
The Parker family's association with the Little Budworth club dates back to the beginning of the 1926 season.
From the first matches in the village, around 1820, teas were always prepared by staff at Oulton Hall, the ancestral home of the Egerton family. But in February 1926 the Hall burned down and it was not until the start of the season that the cricket club suddenly realised they had no-one to provide the teas.
In stepped Brian Parker, of Parker Stores, and when he retired his brother and wife Margaret took over. Noel, who died 10 years ago, passed on the task to son John with Margaret - now 91 - still providing expert assistance.
Oulton chairman Roy Ramsbottom said: 'Margaret has been preparing our teas since she was 25.
'We wonder whether any family has ever prepared teas continuously for 80 years, or any individual for 66.
'A query for Wisden perhaps.' John added: 'It's one those things that someone starts doing to help out and we have carried it on.
'But now mum is not in good health and is too old and I don't have the time.
'I doubt if mum has ever seen a full game, though she has taken a look when she has been up there. But she is not a fan of cricket, though I watch the occasional game on a nice Sunday afternoon.'
Taking over in the coming season is Veronica Eaton, who is already doing teas on Sundays. Maybe another tradition has started.