President's Message

 

President 2019-20 Ken Bamford-2

It is with great pleasure that I take up the role of President of Instonians for the 2019/20 season. To be elected as the first President of a new centenary is a huge honour and I will endeavour to continue the good work of our fantastic list of Past Presidents.

I joined Instonians back in 1976 after leaving school and soon came to understand the meaning of being part of this great club. A year into my rugby career I was injured and unable to return to the field. This is the first time I have been able to publicly thank all my Instonian friends for their support and encouragement. It is not always about results as a means of measuring sporting success, but about friendships we make and nurture during a lifetime of sport.

I am truly amazed at the strength of the youth across our three sports. Seahorse Hockey, Seahorse Mini Rugby and Youth Cricket number over 700 including coaches and administrators. The enthusiasm that drives this section of our club is infectious and I would encourage all our older members to show your support at every opportunity.

It was great to witness last season, when immediately after the 1st XV won their final league match to secure the Ulster Rugby Championship Division 1 title, the players making their way to the hockey pitch to watch the 1st XI win their Ulster Premier League. This bond between our sports is a further indication of our strong foundations. I have no doubt both sections will want to go one better in the coming season and win promotion to their respective All Ireland leagues. The cricket section also shows great resilience and I believe they will continue to build on their successes from 2018.

Last season the Rugby Club celebrated their centenary with a wonderful Gala Ball held in the City Hall. This coming season the Hockey Club will mark the occasion of their sixtieth year with a dinner to be held in the school dining hall.

No sports club can survive without the generosity of their sponsors. I thank them for their support and would encourage all our members to think of them when going about their business. My thanks and admiration goes to all coaches and administrators who give freely of their time to promote sport within Instonians.

In today’s climate of a more focused need to look after our mental health and wellbeing, the presence of a meaningful support network of family and friends makes a considerable difference. At Instonians we take time to listen to each other from the youngest to the oldest and show that we care.

I am looking forward to working with Robin McKelvey, Senior Vice-President and Owen Lambert, Junior Vice-President, to extending the warmest of welcomes to everyone who comes to visit Instonians at Shaw’s Bridge. You are part of our extended family in sport and therefore amongst friends.

 

Ken Bamford

President 2019/20