A Brief History of DACO


I am indebted to our Founder Member, John Paulley and to former Chairman Tom Singleton for their help in putting together this history.


John Paulley was a member of ACU and had been on the Minor Counties panel of umpires for some time and was surprised to find that there was no local organisation for umpires.  He was teaching at Blandford Grammar School and he had a number of senior students interested in umpiring and he was anxious to try and help them further their knowledge, experience and ultimately qualifications.  He set about trying to form a local organisation and succeeded in setting up the Blandford and District Cricket Umpires Association.  John thinks this may have been in 1966 but it may have been in 1967.   However, after some advertising, an inaugural meeting took place at the Blandford Royal British Legion and as far as we can establish this was on 8th March 1967.  At this time the Acting Chairman was Sir Alfred Stapleton, Vice Chairman was a D Watkins and the Secretary was Peter Lowson.


Once the association was formed regular meetings took place at a public house in Shillingstone.  John tells me he was pleased with the agenda and attendance of these meetings, was it because of the venue I wonder?  He can recall that one of the committee may have been from Wimborne.


On 4th November 1968 at a meeting at the Old Ox in Shillingstone the association become the Dorset Association of Cricket Umpires.  Again the officers were re-elected although Sir Alfred Stapleton was now designated as Chairman.


On 6th November 1975 at Wimborne CC Ted Brown became Chairman in succession to Sir Alfred Stapleton.  The following year on 18th November 1976 the Chairman was Ted Brown and the Vice Chairman was Sir Alfred Stapleton and W D Webb became the Secretary.


Tom Singleton became the Vice Chairman on 22nd November 1984 and at this time Ken Bishopp was the Secretary.  In 1990 Tom Singleton became Chairman and John Welch the Vice Chairman with Colin Sturmey the Secretary.  The following year Jim Crump took over as secretary.


Sometime around the early 1990s ACU changed its name to include scorers and the Dorset Association of Cricket Umpires followed suit and added the 'and Scorers' to the title.  At the AGM in 2008 following the merger of ASU&S with the ECB ACO the name again changed and is now the Dorset Association of Cricket Officials.


John recognises that some of the details he has provided may be slightly incorrect as he now no longer has any documents from that time and is relying purely on memory. He has suggested that further enquiries could be made with the Western Gazette, who reported at least the inaugural meeting, Blandford and Shillingstone Cricket Clubs.  The secretary will follow this up meanwhile if any members have any knowledge or memories that may add to this history, please make contact.


I will refine this to be more accurate on dates as time progresses.


Mark Charles

Secretary DACO

April 2010