My father, Mike Rines, who has died aged 89, lived an eventful and fulfilling life, working in industry and journalism, and then undertaking retirement projects that were in many ways as notable as his professional career.
Throughout his life he had a love of cricket. While studying at Merton College, Oxford, in the 1950s he was serving as 12th man for Oxford University against the Australian touring side when the Australians lost a man to injury and Mike was called on to replace him. This unusual event was documented in Wisden.
Born in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, to Edith (nee Cox) and Ken Rines, who ran a radio and electrical shop in the town, Mike attended Scarborough high school for boys, where he first developed an interest in cricket. He helped in the dressing room at Scarborough Cricket Club, met such giants as Wally Hammond, Jack Hobbs and Len Hutton and went on to top the batting averages for Scarborough, playing alongside Freddie Truman. After national service in the RAF, Mike went to Merton College, where he graduated with a law degree.
In the mid-1950s he met Ann Parker at a ball in Scarborough and they married in 1958. The following year, the couple moved to Leeds, where Mike worked for Yorkshire Imperial Metals before becoming editor of Marketing magazine in 1970, despite very little journalistic experience. He threw himself into the role and made the magazine much more than a trade publication, regularly breaking stories picked up by national news media, such as his challenge to the tobacco industry over their launch in the 1970s of New Smoking Material, supposedly a safer alternative to cigarettes, which Mike claimed was simply a marketing ploy.
A love of sailing started on a family camping holiday to Spain where he rigged a towel to a small pole and fashioned a sailing boat from an inflatable dinghy. The passion culminated in his saving and restoring the yacht Nancy Blackett, once owned by the Swallows and Amazons author Arthur Ransome and fictionalised as The Goblin in the book We Didn’t Mean to Go to Sea.
In retirement in Suffolk, Mike took on voluntary projects such as editing the Woodbridge newsletter and organising its maritime festival, and he arranged for the publication in 2012 of the novel Their Cemetery Sown With Corn, written by his former schoolmaster, Frank Binder, which detailed how, at a local level, a civilised society can quickly fall into the grip of tyranny.
Ann died in 2020. Mike is survived by their three children – my brother, Nick, sister, Vicky, and me – and a granddaughter, Molly.