On the beautiful hillside of Sale Fell is this simple memorial bench to Mike Saunders. Mike Saunders lived in the Cumbrian coastal town of Workington and died at the age of 62-years in the West Cumberland Hospital after an ‘illness bravely borne’.
The memorial plaque told me that Mike Saunders was a good cricketer and a good golfer. Research revealed that he was an excellent amateur cricket player, playing for Haverigg Cricket Club where he eventually became Captain and for the Cumberland team. This memorial bench left me with the sense of a much loved man and his obituaries paint a picture of a well thought of man who loved cricket and later golf. In his working life Mike Saunders started out his working life as a teacher and later worked at nearby Sellafield Nuclear site. Mike Saunders was a ‘great husband’ to Val Saunders and in retirement he generously gave his time to the Meals on Wheels service.
In Memory of Mike Saunders Good Cricketer, Good Golfer, Great Husband 1948 – 2010
Sale Fell is one of the smaller Wainwrights, that is the 214 hills listed by Alfred Wainwright in his guidebooks. The Wainwright Fells range from Scafell Pike at 3,210 feet above sea level down to Castle Crag at just 985 feet. Between Keswick and Cockermouth, Sale Fell might be small but it is a stunning viewpoint and its steep slopes make it an excellent site for a memorial bench to rest on. We walked from Wythop Mill’s lovely Church of St Margaret of Antioch that is tucked in to the fellside. From the fell we had glorious views of the flanks of Skiddaw and on the ridge above Wythop Woods we had a lofty view along the length of Bassenthwaite Lake that glistened blue in the sunshine.