In memoriam: Eric Shaw

Everyone at Warrington Town Football Club was saddened to learn of the passing of club president Eric Shaw earlier this month.

Eric played for the club in two spells in the 1960s and 1970s, before serving on the club’s management committee for more than three decades in a variety of roles.

That included many of the unseen jobs that every non-league football club requires dedicated volunteers to undertake, such as groundskeeping, washing the kit and even helping out at training.

His presence in the social side of the club was always felt, Eric being a keen dominoes player and story teller with an infectious laugh, and in his later years although health prevented him attending as many matches as he would have liked, he enjoyed watching the Yellows from the balcony area of the clubhouse.

Even when not able to attend games, Eric always made an effort to keep in touch to find out the score and in recent years, has tuned in to the live audio commentary provided by the club from every match.

Eric was part of the backroom staff when Warrington Town played at Wembley in the 1987 FA Vase final, and was part of a Civic Reception held at Warrington Town Hall for the 25-year reunion of players and staff in 2012.

The club sends its heartfelt condolences to Eric’s wife, family and friends at this sad time.

Jerry Liversidge, a long-time Yellows supporter and friend, pens a tribute to Eric.

I cannot recall the first time that I met Eric Shaw. It must have been in the early 1970s, when we both came to Warrington Town, even though I knew his wife, Beth, from earlier when we worked at Rylands’ offices.

Eric had played for other clubs previously, such as Earlestown in the Lancashire Combination and Crosfields in their 1965–66 Warrington District League Championship-winning side. It was here that he played alongside Dave Taylor amongst others. Both later arrived at Warrington Town and played a major part in the club’s rise in the ’80s, culminating, losing the FA Vase Final at Wembley in 1987 (Dave as Manager, Eric as Trainer, complemented by Coach Alex Gibson [who later joined up with Stuart Pearce as England Under 19 Coaches])

During and after this, Eric served on the Club Committee, doing many jobs, including Decorating & Painting (his trade), running the weekly Football Pontoon, kit man, which included cleaning the changing room, Sunday Team Manager, assisting his friend Derek Gleave with bar work, and not to forget Secretary of the Dominoes Team, in which I was fortunate to have the pleasure of being his partner.

With the differences between the Football and Social sections in the 90s, Eric stood down briefly; incidentally at that time, there is some irony that the Manager Derek Brownbill with most of his players left joining today’s visitors Curzon Ashton.

As I am writing this, I have just been interrupted by a message from one of our Norwegian supporters (expressing his condolences). This shows how far and wide Eric was admired, liked and respected.

However, now I come to 2000 when after a short break Eric wished to return. As Club Secretary, working twilight shifts, I spent most mornings at Town Club. It was on one occasion chairman Harry Bowden suggested to me that Eric should be elected to the vacant position of Club President, needless to say I totally concurred.

We as proposer/seconder put to the members meeting a few days later, consisting of 135 members who unanimously approved the motion (crowds at Town games did not reach 3 figures at that time) shows the huge respect people had for Eric.

With Eric as President, the Club started its steady climb from Step 6 to Step 2 and the debt that we owe this quiet, witty, friendly and sometimes light-hearted, mischievous gentleman is immeasurable.

In conclusion, I wish, as many have, to offer my deepest condolences to his wife Beth, son Billy, daughter-in-law Linda and all their Family.

RIP Eric.

Eric’s funeral will take place on Friday September 29, with the funeral cortege to pass Cantilever Park at approximately 2.20pm.

It is then due at Walton Lea Crematorium for the service at 2.40pm.

There will then be a funeral reception at Warrington Town Social Club.

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