Boxing retro: memories of a teak-tough Sheffield boxer

Local former boxer Billy Calvert is caught out by Coronation Street's Steve Arnold and Local ex-Boxers Chairman Harry Carnall. (27/2/04)
Local former boxer Billy Calvert is caught out by Coronation Street's Steve Arnold and Local ex-Boxers Chairman Harry Carnall. (27/2/04)
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Veteran members of the Sheffield boxing community spared a thought for featherweight Billy Calvert, as we moved into the New Year.

Billy, 82, died in August, from complications associated with Alzheimers, an illness he’d endured for eight years.

His widow Paula, of Dinnington, told The Star: “Billy worked hard for a living as a joiner to support his young family and trained in the evenings at Rex Gray’s gym in Handsworth and also in Barnsley where he sparred with Shaun Doyle and other boxers of his era like Brendan Ingle, Freddie Gilroy and Georgie Bowes.

“He also fought Howard Windstone twice for the British title, losing on points but Howard said it was the hardest fight of his career.”

Billy created one of the biggest upsets in Scottish sport in 1963, stopping big puncher Bobby Fisher inside the distance.

Six months later Darnall-raised Calvert took defending British and European champion and Welsh legend Winstone the full 15 round distance before losing on points.

The boxer retired in May 1965 with a record of Won 24 Lost 21 4 draws record.