15 Jun 2020 in General News
By Brian Bennett
Ashington FC honoured David Bainbridge – a supporter as well as a volunteer – last week with chairman Brian Shotton making an extra special presentation.
Brian awarded David with a lifelong season ticket; a personalised football shirt; a training jumper and a hoody in recognition for his sterling work over the years with the Woodhorn Lane based outfit. And for David, the unexpected ‘gifts’ arrived only a matter of weeks before his birthday next month.
The presentation - which was captured on video by David’s nephew Ross Thompson - has gone both global as well as viral on social media outlets and the club have been inundated with glowing tributes from people at home as well as across the nation.
Mr Shotton has been staggered by the response: “I never envisaged that what was basically a small gesture of appreciation would lead to such a massive reaction,” he said, “the club have been overwhelmed by the sheer volume of comments.”
For the past seven years, David has sold football and domino cards on match days and always carries out the task with a broad smile on his face. His favourite Ashington player is Dylan Williamson and the striker said: “When I heard about the presentation to David my first thoughts was that he absolutely deserves it. David is a top bloke and does a fantastic job on a match day. I saw a comment on social media from another team saying they could do with a ‘David’ at their club - which shows what a great job he does. Credit to chairman Brian Shotton for the thoughtful gesture because you can see what Ashington means to David by his reaction on the video which is very touching. Brian is doing a great job at the club and seems to be bringing the fans and the community back together and moving things in the right direction.”
He continued: “To be chosen by David as his favourite player at Ashington is great because hopefully it means I’m doing something right on and off the pitch. Hopefully I can repay David for all his hard work by scoring goals and helping the team to get three points on a match day.”
Manager Ian Skinner said: “It is an act of kindness of the club’s behalf to reward someone for their hard work and dedication. It has brought a lot of publicity in difficult times in the world but personally I think it’s thoroughly deserved for David’s commitment to the club. David is an infectious individual and he’s great to have around the club. He brings a smile to everyone for the passion he shows and I’m delighted that Ashington FC have recognised the work he does. However, this isn’t about the club - it’s very much about David and to reiterate, a reward for his dedication and commitment.”
Assistant manager Paul Antony commented: “My initial thoughts were that it was a lovely gesture by the club providing positive news at a time where things are not too great with covid-19. The award is thoroughly deserved and I know both David and Ross (Thompson) well. They give up their time and create that community atmosphere – David by selling cards and Ross by taking photographs - and they are two good people to have around the club.”
Pictured: From left to right: Paul Antony, David and Dylan Williamson