Three appearances in the Middlesex County Championship side of 1960, in which he achieved a highest score of fifteen not out, and took one solitary first-class wicket, are not the career figures you would normally associate with a cricketer who receives an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list, however when you consider everything that followed, no one could argue that there are few more deserving recipients of this honour than 83 year old Bill Higginson.
The briefest of professional careers with Middlesex over six decades ago sparked a life-long dedication and passion for the game off the field that has seen the former Middlesex man deservedly honoured with an MBE.
Following his professional playing career, Bill took up coaching, umpiring and even became a match-day ground announcer at Lord’s, however it is for services to Disability Cricket that Bill’s award was deservedly received.
Time spent in Kenya as MCC’s Coach in East Africa clearly stood him in good stead, as returning to Powys, Wales, Bill took on the role of Cricket Development Officer for Mid-Wales, although it was only upon his retirement from this post, some eighteen years ago, did his passion and dedication to Disability Cricket come to bear.
Following his retirement, Bill became involved in Disability Cricket with Wales Cricket and then the British Association for Cricketers with Disabilities (BACD) until just last year, when he retired as Chairman of the BACD, which is now under the governance of the England and Wales Cricket Board.
In 2001, when Bill first became involved in Disability Cricket there were only three sides actively playing the game in the UK. Almost two decades later and after Bill’s commitment and passion to grow the Disability game, he left the BACD with a proud legacy and a Disability game that is now thriving - with thirty-two teams now competing across the country.
Speaking of receiving his MBE for services to the game, Bill commented:
“It came as a complete shock.
“It’s very exciting of course but also very humbling. It’s an award with my name on it but for me it’s a shared award, it really should go to all the volunteers for disabled cricket over the years. It’s a nice reward for the hard work that everyone has done.
“My wife knew before I did, she kept it a secret for months, I had a letter in May asking us to confirm if I’d accept. How she kept it a secret before then is a mystery because we’re a very close family.”
Middlesex Cricket would like to pass on our most sincere congratulations to Bill for the thoroughly deserved recognition of being awarded an MBE.