Praise was heaped upon scores of local football volunteers when they were recognised for decades of service, fair play and dedication at the annual Essex County FA Awards Evening on Tuesday 30th July, with Sir Trevor Brooking presenting the mementoes.
Accolades such as the FA McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards and recognition for community activities were handed out at Chelmsford City Racecourse to grassroots volunteers, whose efforts keep the game alive at the lower levels. There was also a special presentation from Leyton Orient FC’s Josh Wright on behalf of the new Justin Edinburgh 3 Foundation.
The award winners were treated to fun activities, a meal, a season review video and a special ceremony supported by Hospital Radio Chelmsford to add to the prestige. Justin Edinburgh was Special Guest at the 2018 Awards Evening and donations were pledged to Hospital Radio and the JE3 Foundation on the night to support their excellent work.
The Justin Edinburgh 3 Foundation hope to continue Justin's name and legacy, along with his story, to help others. The foundation are raising money through fundraising events to support a charity related to heart or brain health, as well as campaigning to change the law to ensure all health and fitness clubs across the UK are equipped with defibrillators.
Wright, who was Justin’s final signing for The O’s before his sad passing over the summer, informed the crowd and said: “We’re losing Justin and we’re losing people day in, day out because of it. We want to raise as much awareness about the JE3 Foundation as we can. We’re on social media, and every little helps. Hopefully we can save one, ten or 50-plus lives.”
To get involved in grassroots Essex football, browse the menus above. Photos from the Awards Evening can be found at www.dephoto.biz/EssexFA, plus features on the event are available by searching for ‘EssexFootball’ on Facebook and @EssexCountyFA on Twitter. A full list of all Essex County FA award winners, from all categories, can be found below.
FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards: Grassroots League of the Year: Brentwood Community Football Alliance Youth League, #WeOnlyDoPositive Respect Award: Basildon Boys & Girls Club FC, Grassroots Coach of the Year: Ben Elmer (Tiptree Jobserve FC), Grassroots Club of the Year: Great Bradfords FC, Grassroots Project of the Year Award: Muslimah Sports Association and Frenford FC, Volunteer of the Year: Ann Longman (Stanway Villa FC), Grounds Team of the Year: Hawkwell Athletic FC, Supporter of the Year: Albert Bastick (Hawkwell Athletic FC), Rising Star of the Year: Ciaran Whatley (Hawkwell Athletic FC), Grassroots Match Official of the Year: Emma Guest
Groundsman of the Year: Jimmy McKinlay (White Notley FC)
Fair Play: First: Hedinghams United Under 12s (Hawks), Second: Hullbridge Sports Under 16s, Third: Daniel Garfinkle (Epping Town FC)
Long Service Certificate (10 Years): Adrian Arnot (Referee), Anthony Pope (Referee), Carl Pearse (Referee), Christopher Green (Referee), Craig Pullen (Referee), David Tregaskes (Referee), Dean Willsher (Referee), Elsie Hewitt (Colchester & District Sunday League), Errol Souter (Referee), Hazel Massarella (Essex Comets FC, Chelmsford Youth League), James Commins (Boadicea Dynamos FC, Reed Hall Sentinels FC, Colchester & District Youth League), James Whittaker Snr (Referee), Jerry Munson (Reed Hall Sentinels FC, Colchester & District Youth League), Jonathan Smith (Referee), Karl Dunnage (Referee), Martin Berry (Referee), Neil Livermore (Coryton Athletic FC, Referee, Romford & District League, Thurrock FC), Nicholas Kinseley (Referee), Patrick Shanahan (Referee), Paul Beales (Stanway Villa YFC), Raymond Parmenter (Referee), Rhys Battye (Referee), Richard Murphy (Kenson Athletic FC, O'Connors FC, Chelmer Wanderers FC), Robert Bradley (Referee), Robert Earll (Referee), Simon Govus (Beaulieu Park FC), Tracy Blanchett (Layer Colts YFC, Colchester & District Youth League)
Exemplary Service (20 Years): Alan (Dale) Sharp (Referee), Andrew French (Referee), Anthony Keeble (Referee), Brian Freemantle (Referee), Christopher Baker (Referee), Christopher Townes (Referee), Colin Townsend (Referee), David Brignall (Referee), David Margetts (Referee), Geoff Holyland (Rochford Town Sports & Social FC), Geoffrey Cook (Referee), Guy Pell-Ilderton (Referee), Ian Kettridge (Referee), James Pope (Referee), Jamie Garwood (Referee), Janet Leavett (Tollesbury FC), Johanna Withams (Referee), John Burdett (Referee), John Hayto (Referee), John Ilett (Maldon & Tiptree YFC), Kevin Preston (Referee), Lee Dorling (Referee), Maurice Cook (Referee), Paul Gallacher (Writtle FC), Peter Wilson (Referee), Roger Chilvers (Essex Sunday Football Combination), Stephen Margiotta (Northend FC), Stuart Battye (Referee), Stuart Boorman (Referee), Stuart Gillman (Referee), Sylvia Eve (Old Chelmsfordians FC), Thomas Cheek (Referee), Wendy Townsend (Referee)
Outstanding Service (30 Years): Alan Romain (Referee), David Chinery (Referee), Frederick Fairchild (Referee), Geoffrey Saunders (Referee), Graham Austin (Referee), John Ackred (Referee), John Finn (Referee), John Hopkins (Referee), John Machnicki (Referee), Joseph Buda (Referee), Keith Yeo (Referee), Michael Cottee (Referee), Michael Debens (Referee), Michael Summerville (Referee), Mike Sessions (Referee), Paul Eldridge (Referee), Raymond Martin (Referee), Robert Salmon (Referee), Robert William Henson (Colchester & District Youth League), Trevor Megran (Referee)
FA 50-Year Award: Albert Kilby (Maldon Saints YFC), Eric Gallacher (Highwood FC, Great Baddow FC, Park Avenue FC, Writtle FC, Essex Olympian League, Pope & Smith Chelmsford Sunday League, Tom Farr Charity Shield, Bill Spurgeon Invitation Charity Cup), Ernie Osborne (Dagenham Village FC, Southend Municipal FC, Parkside Rangers FC, Alresford Colne Rangers FC, Alresford Athletic FC, Great Bentley Minors League, Colchester Sunday League, Referee, Colchester Referees Society), Norman French (Melbourne Sports FC, Navestock FC, Park Royal FC, Byron Red Star FC), Peter Crowhurst (Southchurch Rovers FC, Scotia FC, Essex County FA, Basildon Saturday League, Referee, Basildon Sunday League, Essex County Women’s League, Referee Observer), Roger Chilvers (Plashet Dynamos FC, Referee, London Sunday Corinthian League, Essex Sunday Football Combination, Clapton FC, Barking FC, Ilford FC, Barkingside FC)
#CelebrateEssex Volunteer Awards: Manager: Robert Hutchings-Spiller (South Benfleet United FC and Leigh Town FC), Secretary: Jamie Wright (Chigwell FC), Welfare Officer: Claire Priddle (Trinity YFC), Young Volunteer: Ben Morris (FC Redwing), Fundraiser: Ray Wright (May & Baker Eastbrook Community FC), Groundsperson: Jim Robinson (Dagenham United FC), Coach: Mark Gordon (FC Redwing)