Christian league's tribute to long-serving stalwart
2013: Norfolk Christian Football League stalwart Alan Barnes was presented with a long-service award from the league by Norwich City chaplain Bert Cadmore at the league’s cup finals day at Dereham Town’s Aldiss Park on Saturday May 11.
Alan has achieved a remarkable 34 years of service to the league as both a founding member at the tender age of 19, back in 1979, and in an enormous variety of key roles ever since.
Alan took over as league secretary from the founder, Don Wilson, and continued in this post for eight years while also running the Dereham Road Baptist Church team.
Alan helped to establish and run the now flourishing youth league and has been the ever-present fixtures secretary for the youth section and also compiling fixtures in several spells for the adult league.
He has run both the Dereham Road and NCBC youth teams in his time and also played for Norwich Vineyard and occasionally this season at the age of 53 for Cringleford.
Alan, who has no plans to retire from his involvement, said: “I have been privileged to be involved in the league for so long and I have made scores of friends and contacts through it. I am honoured to have been recognised by the award.
“One personal highlight of my time in the league was the Bishop’s Cup final in 1983 held at Trowse playing for Dereham Road. Unfortunately we lost 3-0 to the YMCA.”
Making the presentation, league vice-chairman, Jim Green paid tribute to Alan, saying: “Alan is someone who combines faith and football in his life. Calm on the pitch and with those he coached, a supportive presence to others, and someone who’s consistent, quiet work has enabled others to enjoy football over many years.”
Pictured above is Alan Barnes, left, receiving his award from Bert Cadmore.