TRIBUTES have been paid to Oliver Grieveson, a major name in regional rugby union, who has died at the age of 82.

After completing his national service in the Navy, where he played for the Navy and Combined Services team, Mr Grieveson played as full-back for Selby RUFC for several years.

In 1954, he moved to play for Headingley, where he remained until 1964, before moving back to Selby for a brief period before he retired from playing in the late 1960s and moved into the administrative side of the game.

Peter Bramley, of Hemingbrough, played alongside Mr Grieveson at Selby, and praised his behaviour on and off the pitch.

Mr Bramley said Mr Grieveson, who lived in Doncaster Road, was also a skilled cricketer and footballer, and had played for Selby Bohemians prior to his rugby career.

He said: “He was very much an all-round player and sportsman, but it was rugby where he made his name and played with great distinction. His sportsmanship was always of the highest standard. That is the way he played, and that is the way he was.

“He played for Yorkshire 49 times, and had his first game while still at Selby, then the rest while at Headingley. During that time, he had trials for England, and played for the Barbarians, an invitation side, nearly all made of internationals, which was very prestigious.”

Mr Grieveson managed to fit in his responsibilities to rugby around his work as the manager of the Selby branch of Lloyds Bank, until he retired in at the age of 60 in 1991.

After he stopped playing, Mr Grieveson was treasurer for Yorkshire at a county level for 25 years, between 1970 and 1995, and was also selector for Yorkshire, and representative for the county on the RFU Committee.

Mr Bramley said: “He was a very important member of society and very friendly. He was very well thought of and much respected in rugby union circles and well respected in business.

“He was a skillful and talented player, very quick and a very fine line and goal kicker. He had a good sense of humour, he was good to get along with, and a good friend. My thoughts go out to his family.”

Mr Grieveson, who died on Thursday at York Hospital, is survived by his widow, Marjorie, children and grandchildren.