The Presidents Prize is presented at the Annual Presentations day and is voted for by all members of the Committee and Team Managers. It has often gone to a Team Manager or another Committee Member in the past but the truth is that this award is open to any member of the Club including players. To make matters easier for adjudication managers those voting are advised to put a 1st and 2nd placed choice. The voting slips are then all checked to find the season's winner.
Many of us will not have known Pat Harvey. He was the third Chairman of the Club and is considered the person who was largely responsible for getting the club to operate in a professional and, to a degree, in a business-like manner. At the time that he was Chairman, there was an ambition to either own our own ground, rent our own facilities or at the very least, get preferential use of a local recreation ground.
Needless to say, the Club was deeply into fundraising, in order to achieve this goal at some stage in the future. Although he was not the organiser for much of this fundraising, this was largely carried out by Eric Shoebridge who was the Social & Fund Raising Chairman of that time, Pat would ensure that things were going in the right direction and it was he who hit upon the idea of having our local M.P. Ivor Stanbrook as the Club's President, as he was aware of how influential he might be in helping us achieve our aim, which in a roundabout way, proved to be the case.
The qualities that Pat looked for from players were those that gave total commitment when representing the Club, and led by example, be it on or off the field of play and always kept their Team Manager informed, in advance, if they were unable to attend training sessions.
Pat had stood down as Chairman and had sadly died of cancer before we reached our goal, but it was his widow Jean's wish that a Cup is presented in his memory each year and that it should be awarded to the player from our youth section, who most fitted Pat's ideals. Players who are inspirational on the field, who always give their utmost, who lead by example, lift their teammates when games are not going as they would want them to and do not question the referee's decisions, even when things are not going the team's way. Players who always turn up for training, keep their team manager informed if they are not able to attend training or for any reason not be available to play in a match and generally make their team managers life much easier, dare we say, even a pleasure. Pat also admired those players who were not so gifted, who persevered and worked at their game and by sheer hard work and determination developed into better players, and because of this, the award hasn't always gone to the best player in a team.
If managers feel that there is a particular player in their squad that merits being considered for this award please give us a brief report as to your reasons for nominating him and a winner will be selected from the nominations received.
Dennis Marshall first became involved with the Club in the Mid Eighties, through his interest in football and in particular, that of his son Wayne. Dennis stood down from the Committee in 2006 mainly through poor health, but as his health seemed to improve for a while, he again began attending meetings until 2008.
Dennis held various roles within the Club over the years. He was an Assistant Manager for the team that Wayne played in. The team had at least three Managers, but Dennis remained Assistant Manager throughout. When that team came to a close after the Under 18 age group, he became involved in organising the colts section of the Club at Tubbenden Lane. Dennis was not only excellent with the youngsters, but he was also very well organised.
When others succeeded him in that role, not nearly as well at times, he turned his attention to helping out on the Groundstaff and here again, made a huge contribution to the running of the Club.
He was always willing to help with Fund Raising events in our formative years and he was a reliable helper at any event that the Club was involved in, whether it be Car Parking Duties, or keeping the Changing Rooms clean and orderly when we hosted Cup Finals at the Ground.
He was one of the rare breeds that continued to be involved with the Club long after his son had finished playing. He was an extremely Loyal Club Member.
When he passed away his children's wish at his funeral was that donations be made to Orpington Rovers Football Club and we were deeply honoured by this gesture.
It was therefore decided that we should remember him in a significant way. It was decided that we should purchase a Cup in his honour and because of his involvement with the younger element of the Club, that this Cup should go to a member of the Club from that section that trains at Tubbenden Lane, whether they are in a League Team or just attend for training if they are too young at present to play in a League Team.
The managers of age groups at Tubbenden should nominate players for this award.