Waterhead ARLFC mourns the loss of president Allan Booth

WATERHEAD ARLFC will not be the same place without Allan Booth after the club’s president and stalwart died.

That is the view of vice-chairman Jonathan Eastwood as the Peach Road outfit tries to come to terms with the loss of one of their own.

Allan, 80, simply did everything at the club now known as the Warriors – whether it be helping run it or strapping up players for matches.

The standing of the man has been shown by the reactions of some of Waterhead’s famous old boys – even those he told off.

Barrie McDermott, who went on to win Super League titles with Leeds Rhinos, said: “I’m very sad to hear Boothy has left us.

Waterhead ARLFC Allan Booth – CREDIT JACKIE CLOWES

“What a man. Whether it was the magic sponge, a word of advice or encouragement even a b******ing from time to time, when he spoke we all listened.

“He’ll be sadly missed.”

Allan’s connection with Waterhead – and his service to them – saw him become a life member of the British Amateur Rugby League Association (BARLA).

The club showed its regard for him by helping him get a new wheelchair and his name was included on the club’s centenary shirt.

He also oversaw many improvements at the club, which also helped develop the likes of Paul Sculthorpe, Marc Sneyd and Jordan Turner.

Kevin Sinfield, currently completing his Ultra 7 in 7 in 7, also learned his started at Peach Road and has never lost his connection to where it all began as a seven-year-old.

Many say Allan’s proudest day was seeing Waterhead win the BARLA National Cup in 2022 and this year, he saw them win the National Conference League’s Division Two title.

And Jonathan explained the void his death leaves.

He said: “Allan will be sorely missed by everyone connected with his beloved Waterhead rugby club.

“My earliest memories of Allan are that he was always busy at the club, whether it was putting post protectors out, doing rub downs or physio with players.

“He was always last one out after making sure changing rooms were spotless too.

“Allan was held in the highest regard by everyone, after years of being at the club he was a hero to most.

“Mr President was so proud when the first team won the National Cup and I know the place won’t be the same without him.”

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