A sad farewell to Dave; Supporters rally for wheelchair athletes; East Lothian job

Friday 28th May 2021

scottishathletics were saddened to learn that Dave McConnell of Lasswade AC passed away on Monday 24 May after a period of illness. Dave was an enthusiastic coach, official and Lasswade AC member for decades and will be much missed by the sport – we extend our condolences to all his family and friends.

The club paid a fitting tribute on its website: “Dave became involved with Lasswade Athletics Club in 1984/85 after going along to support his young niece. He was very enthusiastic and soon became involved in coaching, officiating and committee work which he continued throughout his life. Dave coached hurdles which was his favourite event and he was a dedicated and reliable coach, official and club member always involved in anything the club did and more than happy to volunteer whatever the task.

“Dave officiated at both local and national level and was involved in senior athletics to international level as part of the start team. Dave was a stalwart of his club and scottishathletics and will be sorely missed by his colleagues at all levels as well as countless athletes he coached over the years.”

Start team Discipline Head for scottishathletics, Richard O’Grady, added: “Dave was a valued member of our team. Often the first to crack a joke and always the first to offer guidance and advice to new officials.

“He had been an official for over 40 years, so had considerable experience of officiating at all levels of competition. Dave was a L4 Starters Assistant, a L3 Field & L3 Track Judge. He was also a L2 Throws coach with Lasswade AAC.

“He will certainly be fondly remembered by all who knew him.”

The funeral will be held in the Main Chapel at Mortonhall Crematorium, Edinburgh, on Monday 7 June at 4pm. Due to the current Covid restrictions, the number of friends and colleagues able to attend in person is limited – if you wish to attend please contact Dave Hand of Lasswade AC. There is the possibility of the service being streamed online – if that is successfully arranged we will add details to this story in due course.


Support has flooded in this week for the Dumfries and Galloway Wheelchair Track Athletics Club, after a fire at the sports centre where it is based destroyed vital equipment.

Police say they have arrested a youth in connection with the fire at the David Keswick Centre in Dumfries on Monday evening, which caused smoke and heat damage to racing wheelchairs, RaceRunning frames and other kit.

A GoFundMe page set up to support the athletes in replacing the damaged equipment sailed swiftly through its initial target of £2,500 and has at the time of writing gone through the £20K mark as generous supporters rushed to help the club, which was founded by world champion wheelchair racer Shelby Watson and her father Russ.

scottishathletics staff have reached out to see how we can be of assistance and we know many of our members will have a connection with the club or want to show their support. The fundraising page can be found at https://www.gofundme.com/f/wheelchair-training-equipment


Want to work in athletics? A position has arisen to support the athletics community in East Lothian.

enjoyleisure is looking for an Athletics Development Officer to be based at Meadowmill Sports Centre, working 30 hours a week to promote and develop a thriving athletics community and structure in the region.

More details are available online, with applications closing on 6 June.

Below: Meadowmill was the venue for several successful scottishathletics track and field events last summer. Pic by Bobby Gavin.

Tags: enjoysport, Job Vacancies, Jobs in Athletics, Meadowmill, Officials, Para Sport

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