George Woodhouse will be remembered both as Somerset’s youngest captain and as one of the three amateurs (some of us counted five) who shared the responsibilities of leadership in 1948. George Edward Sealy Woodhouse, who was known to friends and colleagues within the brewery industry as Edward, was chairman of Blandford-based Hall & Woodhouse up to the time of his death.
He identified with life in Dorset and was High Sheriff in 1977; more recently he had been Deputy Lieutenant of the county. His career for Somerset extended over 58 matches between 1946 and 1953.
George Woodhouse was a sound middle-order batsman, he scored one century in 1947. The following summer, he took over as captain after spells by ‘Mandy’ Mitchell-Innes and Jake Seamer. It was at a time when Somerset could find no available amateur prepared to take the job on a more permanent basis. Woodhouse agreed, however, to be a skipper for the whole of 1949.
Then, as he had forewarned, he settled into his career in the brewery trade. Taunton’s contemporaries described him as a likable captain. On the field, he had an unobtrusive personality. It must have been demoralizing for him when the county lost 10 matches in a row during mid-summer.
But they still climbed three places in the Championship table, to finish ninth under him. In all first-class cricket, he scored 2048 runs (19.69), and took one wicket; he also took 18 catches and a stumping. After being educated at Marlborough, he spent a year at Trinity College, Cambridge before going into the Coldstream Guards. He played wartime cricket and rugby for Cambridge, and also represented Dorset & Wilts at rugby.
George Woodhouse was a life member of Somerset CCC and had been president of Dorset CCC. Woodhouse leaves a widow and four children were 63 at the age of his death. He died at his home in Fontmell Magna, Dorset after a heart attack on Jan 19, 1988.