I’m saddened to announce the passing of league Life Vice President John Whidborne, who was born in Barrow in Furness in 1930.

John married Bessie in 1952 and they had a son and a daughter.

John’s interest in table tennis began in the RAF where he rose to the rank of corporal during his National Service years. In 1964 he moved to Sheffield and joined the Abbeydale club and spent many years as chairman of the club. John served a total of thirty years as league chairman and was National Councillor for South Yorkshire for six years. His sporting interests also stretched to racketball and crown green bowling.

In 1968 John joined the general committee of the Sheffield table tennis league; he also served on the selection and coaching committee, the formation of divisions committee and the finance committee. In 1993 John was appointed Life Vice President of the Sheffield table tennis league and in 2012 he became a member of the select group of the Outstanding League Service award winners who have won the Arthur Smith trophy twice.

John devoted much of his spare time to table tennis activities and he carried out his duties stoically; he was a stalwart of the Sheffield table tennis league and his contributions will be missed.

John’s funeral will take place at 1:15pm on Thursday August 1st at the Hutcliffe Wood crematorium.