Former ETTA Chairman Alex Murdoch has paid tribute to John Dignum, who has died at the age of 72.

John served on the Association’s Management Committee from 2003 until 2013, as Vice- Chairman (Administration) from 2003 until 2011 and Vice-Chairman (Operations) after that.

He chaired the Membership Committee from 2006-2010 and also served on the Honours Committee for a decade.

“John was a very active contributor to the ETTA management committee for many years,” said Alex Murdoch.

“He was the major advocate for updating and professionalising the Annual Report into a colour brochure, as well as improving conditions for staff members.

“John was well liked by all the staff, management and volunteers who he worked with. He will be sorely missed by all of us, not just as a colleague but as a friend as well.”

John Dignum was born in Hastings in 1944 and was first on the Hastings & District TTA committee in 1966. He was also organiser of the Hastings Junior Closed from 1966-68 and 1970-72.

He later became a member of the Maidstone TTA committee, before moving to Worcestershire. He served continuously on the Bromsgrove & Redditch TTL committee since 1991, chairing the development group over the same period.

John’s administrative and organisational skills meant he was perfectly suited to key roles at major events.

That included Information Manager at the 1997 World Championships, 1995 European Championships and 2002 Commonwealth Games and Information Director at the 1998 Veterans’ Worlds.

John presents champion Jess Dawson with the trophy at the Junior National Champonships in 2006
John presents champion Jess Dawson with the trophy at the Junior National Champonships in 2006

He was also in charge of hospitality at the English Opens of 1999 and 2001; Print Room Manager at the 2009 event and in charge of ticket sales and front desk at the 2011 event.

He was the ETTA delegate at the Commonwealth Championships in India in 2007 and in Glasgow in 2009 and in 1996 was Assistant Organiser of the Home Countries Tournament and Olympic Qualification.

The ETTA recognised his contribution with the Maurice Goldstein Award in 1997 and the Malcolm Scott Award in 2010. A year later, he became a Vice-President.

Table Tennis England Deputy Chairman and VETTS Chairman Susie Hughes said John had also supported his wife Margaret at VETTS tournaments and Veteran World and European Championships.

Margaret and their daughters Kerrie and Sue were with him when he passed away peacefully at home.

There will be the opportunity to celebrate John’s life on Thursday August 18 at 11am at Redditch Crematorium and he had specifically requested that this service is a celebration and that bright colours should be worn.