Colin Ainsworth – 1978 – 2023
North Somerset Hockey Club and the wider hockey family heard the devastating news that Colin died unexpectedly but peacefully in his sleep on 17th December 2023.
Since joining NSHC Colin threw himself into not only playing but also volunteering for numerous different roles. These included team captains over a number of years, umpiring, assistance with adult coaching, club website management and social media posts, managing the membership directory and being first point of contact for membership enquiries, managing and replenishing first aid kits and match balls for teams.
This list would be more than enough for most, but not for Colin. He was also Junior Section Manager for several years and coached and managed our junior teams, including umpiring at numerous junior’s games and festivals. Through this role he influenced, developed, and passed on his love of hockey to so many younger players.
Colin’s input and huge commitment was recognised at the Club’s Annual Dinner in April 2023 when he was awarded the Club Person of the Year trophy.
As well as his involvement with NSHC, Colin also volunteered as a coach for Avon Juniors, assisted with umpiring at another club, and captained the Avon and Somerset Police team in the Corporate 7s league – playing a game just days before his untimely death.
In July, Colin was Highly Commended in the “Unsung Club Hero of the Year” category at the England Hockey awards evening.
Colin fitted in his enormous hockey commitments around working shifts as Acting Custody Inspector in the Police, and his family life.
Our heartfelt thoughts are with Sam his wife, and children and NSHC members Josh and Lexie.
Some of the many hockey related tributes that have been received/posted included
messages of condolence sent direct to the NSHC Chair from Firebrands HC and Westbury & United Banks HC; and the following individual tributes:
“Colin passed his love of the game on to so many, a legacy will live long in everyone’s memory”;
“Such heart-breaking news. A huge loss to the hockey community and to the family, thoughts and prayers are with all”;
“Such sad news. Colin was so kind to * in his early days at hockey”;
“He was the very first person who looked out for me when I started playing hockey and was always kind, funny, and thoughtful. He will be greatly missed. So sad.”