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uk athletics statement: bob smith

Bob Smith

UK Athletics is greatly saddened to hear news of the death of Bob Smith. Bob made a huge contribution to the sport and the work of England Athletics as a volunteer and member of England Athletics staff.

Bob’s enthusiasm for the sport and desire to support a range of people in their involvement in athletics and running were obvious to anyone who met him.

Within England Athletics Bob’s roles included those as a regional and area manager. He also managed England Athletics’ work in London in the build-up and period immediately after the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. This saw Bob’s knowledge of the London athletics scene and the many bodies who could be engaged in partnerships to develop the sport proving invaluable. A range of activities were undertaken from the provision of activities for people who had not previously been involved in the sport, support for established clubs, the creation of new clubs where there were gaps in provision and the pioneering of new approaches to facilitating the sport, such as the compact athletics facility developed in Hackney.

The impact of his work in the sport as a volunteer and a professional will continue to be felt and remembered.

Bob's family, Jo, James and Janet, would like to thank all of his friends and colleagues from the athletics world their support over the last 20 or so months, "We are heartbroken at his loss but it is of great comfort see the affection and respect all had for him.

"Bob followed the family "trade" in athletics but to us he was not just Bob the athletics man but also an incredibly caring, kind and loving son, father and brother. We will miss you Bob and will try to be as strong as you were."

England Athletics Chief Executive Chris Jones said, “There is a great sense of grief for many of us at England Athletics at this time. Bob was a dear friend to us as well as being a valued colleague. Our thoughts are very much with his family and other friends at this time of loss.

“As an employee, Bob’s knowledge of the sport, the people involved and, specifically, of the London athletics scene have been invaluable. His knowledge was fuelled by his huge passion and love of the sport, and drew on the many different people he knew across the athletics family.

“As a professional he made a big impact on the sport, particularly in London in the period building up to and after the London 2012 Games. And Bob’s contribution to the sport went far beyond his work for England Athletics with his service of his club and the wider sport as a volunteer.”

“Bob is someone who we will miss greatly and count ourselves privileged to have known.”

Joining Chris Jones in paying tribute to Bob, UK Athletics’ Chief Executive Niels de Vos said: “We are deeply saddened to hear of the loss of Bob Smith. A stalwart of the sport, his irrepressible commitment and work ethic, particularly in the busy period pre and during London 2012, was always undertaken with the good of the sport and the athletes involved in mind.

“His legacy as an athletics man through and through is sure to live on, and our thoughts are with his family and many friends at this difficult time.”