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18 May 2022 : Reflections of "Spenny" - prize-winning volunteer

Runcorn Linnets volunteer, Alan Spendlove ("Spenny") was awarded the Noel Bell Trophy for his contribution to the club at our Presentation Evening on Friday.

"Spenny" was unable to attend the event due to illness but wanted to show his appreciation to Noel's widow Sue for honouring him, give fans some context to work already carried out at and briefly outline future ambitions.

He said: "The Noel Bell Award for contribution to the Linnets. I am overwhelmed to receive such an honour.

"Unfortunately due to a viral infection, I was unable to be there to collect in person to accept the award, which is totally unexpected.

"I was privileged to have known Noel from living on the same estate. I would often bump into him and talk on his favourite subject Runcorn FC."

"Spenny" added: "When the pandemic started and football ceased, or ground volunteers decided that the time was right to make improvements.

"Alan Jones and Paul Tandy relocated containers and re-painted. It was left to me and my fellow volunteers Bren Connolly and Paul Riley to lay many flags and erect fencing,

"Sam Phillips asked me would I build a gantry for the media team above the stand. I jumped at the chance. Work in progress.

"With winter 2021 approaching, it decided we needed cover down the bottom (Forest End). I designed cantilever frames and had them manufactured and we set up a working party to fit them.

"We recently added more frames and with a very kind and welcome donation from supporter Reg Woods, we will be shortly be fitting more roof panels.

"I would like to envisage for the future a larger bar and terracing at the Popular End or down the side of the ground - oh, and we continue with the gantry. Martin (Holding) needs cover for videoing the games."

Another regret for "Spenny" in his absence from the awards ceremony was being unable to say farewell to departing manager, Calum McIntyre.

"It is a pleasure to have known Calum," he added.

"Thanks for a cracking season and good luck to him at Chester FC."

Photo - Alan Spendlove (centre) with fellow volunteers Paul Tandy and Jimmy Peers.

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