Missing trophy reunites boxing trio
PUBLISHED: 18:00 16 October 2008 | UPDATED: 09:48 10 June 2010
A FAMOUS boxing trophy, thought lost for half-a-century, has mysteriously reappeared - leading to a boxers' reunion after 40 years. From 1954 to 1957 the Bulkeley Shield was presented to the winner of the annual three-way derby between junior boxers of Ex
A FAMOUS boxing trophy, thought lost for half-a-century, has mysteriously reappeared - leading to a boxers' reunion after 40 years.From 1954 to 1957 the Bulkeley Shield was presented to the winner of the annual three-way derby between junior boxers of Exmouth, Sidmouth and Exeter Amateur Boxing Clubs.Originally donated by a Mr G Bulkeley, then president of Sidmouth Amateur Boxing Club, the shield was 'found' by Brian O'Brien, former coach at the Lympstone Boxing Club.And, thanks to Brian's discovery, it lead to the reunion after 40 years between Exmouth's former star amateur Mike Norrish, 74, and Terry O'Brien, formerly of the Sidmouth Club, at Mike's house in Denning Court, Exmouth.Brian, who works at Exmouth Community College, in the student community action programme, said: "I work at the college and someone there knew of my interest in boxing. "One day the shield turned up outside my office. I assumed one of the caretakers had left it and it had been in a storeroom there all this time."Terry said it brought back 'memories' of when his father, Jimmy, a professional boxer, who founded the now defunct Sidmouth club, fought on the same bill at Exeter City football ground in 1948 as Bruce Woodcock, British heavyweight champion - who was making a comeback.The Bulkeley Shield is now being cared for by Mr Norrish, who said: "It was great to see Terry after all these years - it really brings back memories." Mr Bulkeley was a wealthy gent who may have lived at the Victoria Hotel, and presented the shield "to provide contests for the junior members of the clubs". At the Sidmouth Boxing Club's annual meeting in July 1958, it was reported it was "not possible to stage the Bulkeley Shield tournament this season because of the shortage of schoolboy boxers". Soon after the Sidmouth club folded and even after its brief re-formation in the mid-60s the trophy was never reintroduced, and eventually lost.