A JUNIOR cricket coach from Haslingden was found dead in a river near a Helmshore park.

The body of 50-year-old Andrew Duckworth, coach of the under 15’s at Rawtenstall Cricket Club, was discovered in the River Ogden near Snig Hole Park, also known as Helmshore Memorial Park, on Saturday afternoon at around 1.20pm.


Police said that Mr Duckworth, who was a father from Haslingden, was out walking his dog before they found his body.

His death is not being treated as suspicious.

Officers cordoned off the park for around two hours while investigations were carried out.

Mr Duckworth was coach of the youngsters at Rawtenstall for three years and Brian Payne, chairman of Rawtenstall Cricket Club, said that he was incredibly dedicated.

He said: “Andrew is going to be sadly missed by the juniors. He was down there with them every night, he was such a dedicated guy.

“He would always want everyone to be organised, getting the nets up early.”

The club will pay tribute to Mr Duckworth when the team holds a minute’s silence next week ahead of the Lancashire League match against Haslingden, his home town.

Junior coach David Hannam worked with Mr Duckworth regularly and said: “It’s hard finding people who are willing to dedicate their time to young people and the ones that do are worth their weight in gold.

“Andrew will be sorely missed by the juniors who he was always enthusiastic about coaching. He showed them empathy and made them enjoy the game.

“It isn’t about winning trophies, it’s about making sure kids get involved and enjoy playing and in that he was extremely successful.”

Keith Roscoe, captain of the Rawtenstall first team, said: “He was a fantastic man, a really enthusiastic coach who did a heck of a lot for the kids that were in his charge.

“It’s an absolute tragedy for everyone.

“For a few years we didn’t have an under 15’s team so it’s excellent that he got that up and running and he’s got a fair few players into the second and third teams along the way.

“It’s come as a real shock to all of us, as a person and as a coach he was just an all round nice guy.

“I think he has left a real legacy here and I’m sure that some of the kids who worked with him will be popping up in the first team at some point.”