Willington chairman Richard Tremewan is fighting for his life after collapsing during the second half of Tuesday evening’s match at Chester-le-Street. He is thought to have suffered a stroke and a bleed on the brain.
“He seemed as right as rain in the clubhouse before the match, chatting to everyone and running round as usual,” says Willington manager Rob Lee.
Formerly chairman at Bishop Auckland, Richie has led a transformaton at Willington – where he lives – both on and off the field. He’s also club secretary.
“There’s no two ways about it, it’s a completely diofferent place. He’s done a fantastic job,” says Rob.
The most charismatic and enthusiastic of men – he even got Newcastle Brown into the clubhouse after I’d nagged him – Richie helps run a successful double glazing business and is also a keen mountain biker. He’s 48.
He was first taken to hospital in Durham and then transferred to Newcastle where he underwent an operation tonight. This Saturday’s game with Bedlington Terriers has been postponed – “the players just couldn’t have got their heads around it,” says Rob.
*The Rev Canon Leo Osborn, inveterate ground hopper and the Northern League’s chaplain for many years, is back on holiday in the North-East and keen to tick off Darlington’s temporary home at Blackwell Meadows. That’s if he can find it.
As usual I give him impeccable directions, as usual he gets hopelessly lost, as usual he blames me.
The Quakers have done tremendously well since Northern League days, now in the National League North and tonight hosting Brackley – yet another team which plays at St James’ Park – which is about as far south as north goes. The journey from Northamptonshire has taken four-and-a-half hours.
Blackwell Meadows is the home of Darlington Rugby Club, and Quakers may not be there much longer. The club’s thought to be considering a move back to the former George Reynolds Arena, now home to Mowden Park RFC, with a fans’ vote likely in the summer.
“The club will face significant challenges and decisions in the coming months,” writes chief executive David Johnston in tonight’s programme.
The gate’s just 916, the first time this season that it’s been under 1,000 and well below the notional break-even figure. The game’s poor, the small consolation that the drummer’s reduced to almost total silence. Drum minor, as it were. Brackley win 2-0 to remain in the play-off places.
Leo’s headed back up the A1 to Alnwick, another place where the ground’s called St James’ Park. Whether he’s found it is anyone’s guess, but if he hasn’t, we all know who’s to blame.