Northern Alliance first division champions Percy Main Amateurs signed off their 2014-15 season in style at their annual presentation and awards evening at a packed Percy Main Cricket Club on Saturday night.
The event was compered by chairman Peter Bainbridge and the footballing awards were presented by club president and former player of many years ago, Ronnie Robinson, while Tony Short, the MD of the club’s main sponsor, ADS Aircon, was also in attendance.
Bainbridge got the awards under way with special awards to Pat McHugh and Julie Laws for their sterling work behind the scenes.
Having made his debut for Percy Main as a 17-year-old in 1998, goalkeeper Rob Rodgerson was presented with a salver to mark 250 appearances for the club, a milestone reached during the latter part of the campaign and rarely achieved in Northern Alliance football.
Normally the last award to be presented, the Clubman of the Year accolade was handed out first and to great acclaim it went to the memory of the ever popular former committee member Norman Rodgerson, the eldest of three generations of Rodgerson’s at the club, who sadly died last November and was accepted by his son Bob with many family members in attendance.
Team manager Richard Nugent paid tribute to the coaching staff of Danny Nelson and Dave Addison, who had played such a big part in the club’s success over the past season, while Nugent described the committee at Purvis Park as “the best in non league football”.
The Manager’s Player of the Year went to Chris Laidlaw for the second time, who had performed consistently well during his second season at the club, having just pipped Ryan Laws.
Dwayne Murray, a mid-season capture from the demise of Heddon, was named the Norman Rodgerson Supporters’ Player in a close run vote, with ten others also in the running.
There was a double celebration for Adam Green, who scooped both the Young Player and the Players’ Player awards.
Green joined Main during the summer and proved to be a real find, having made the right back position his own and featured in all but one of the season’s games.
The overall Player of the Year award went to Joe Betts, a talented centre forward who troubled opposition defences and netted 11 times during the past season, with a few memorable strikes among his counters.
Percy Main will prepare for the challenge for life back in the premier division after an absence of only one season with four testing pre-season games.
First up on July 18 is the visit of newly promoted Longbenton, who themselves will take their place in the league’s middle tier, and a week later FA Vase winners North Shields will make the short journey to Purvis Park for the annual Gary Hull Memorial Trophy match in a game which is sure to attract a large crowd.
Main will face further Northern League opposition in the shape of West Allotment (July 28) and Brandon United (August 1), both at home, before the new season gets under way on August 8.