The League Reaches Australia (10/02/2013)

We have heard over the weekend from Paul Froggatt, one time member of Solihull A.C. & Royal Sutton Coldfield A.C. who now lives in Australia. His family has a long and distinguished connections with Birmingham & Midland athletics. Here are his observations.


I have seen the website request for details of previous medals and trophies from the Birmingham League and rooting through the family archive box, I have found two plaques that would have been won by my father, Robert Froggatt (whom of course many would have known), for Small Heath Harriers. The first is a Division 2 runners-up plaque from 1966/7 season and the second is a Division 2 Champions from 1970, with Small Heath H engraved on it. The Small Heath is a different engraving style so I don't know whether the club arranged for that to be done after the awarding. Sadly, although I have a number of other medals and awards that appeared to be for my grandfather and great-grandfather (both also Robert Froggatt and both also of Small Heath Harriers), there is nothing from their eras connected with the Birmingham League. I can find what I anticipate to be my grandfather in results from the 1930's and 1940's on the website.

BDXCL Froggatt Plaque 02 BDXCL Froggatt Plaque 01

As many of those that I ran against over the years for Solihull and Small Heath and latterly Royal Sutton Coldfield know, I moved to Australia a couple of years ago so I'm afraid I'm not around to bring them to a league match to show those interested in the history. However, I attach a photo of each of the two plaques.

I can also help you to some extent on the history of the Small Heath Harriers vest as noted on the website. You are correct in that during the 1970's up to the point of the merger with Solihull, it was a plain white vest with two diagonal blue bands. These were the year round colours, as Small Heath did not particularly participate in the track & field scene other than as individuals in the old open meetings. The earlier version was blue and white hoops throughout, although I do not know if this was the original colours, or at what point the club changed from the hoops to the two diagonal bands. The hoops were the club colours in 1930 as I have newspaper clippings from that year of my grandfather at the Polytechnic marathon. They were still the colours in 1948 from a club photo. Colin Simpson is probably the best person to try and get in contact with to provide more details on the Small Heath history as he appears on the 1948 club photo.

All the best with the research and history, I still enjoy reading the results from the league and hope that at some point in the future I will be in the UK to participate in another Birmingham XC league race.

Kind Regards,

Paul Froggatt"