8th May, 2021

Tributes paid to 'inspirational' former youth club leader

AN ‘INSPIRATIONAL’ former leader of a beloved century-old youth club has been fondly remembered after he passed away.

Kenneth Edmund Piercey – known as Ken – died on March 31 at the age of 73.

He was the leader and manager of the Bradby Club from 1991 to 1996 – when it was known as the Bradby Boys’ Club – before he and his wife Rose left to work in London.

Bradby Club Trustee Alison Ross described Ken as ‘a legend’ whose guidance benefitted many young people.

She said: “Ken was such an inspiration to so many young people in Rugby and Europe.

“He was appointed in 1991 as leader – one of the best decisions the Trustees ever made.

“He was a sportsman, musician, first class bass player, and exactly what Bradby needed in 1991.

“He injected competence, fun, innovation and charisma, leading to a rapidly expanding membership and being an ideal role model for many boys and girls.”

A Bradby Club newsletter from 1996 – paying tribute to Ken and Rose as they left the Club – read: “Ken and Rose have given a proud old club a new sense of pride and purpose. Their ideas, imagination and enthusiasm has rubbed off on everyone.”

Ken’s initiatives included exchanges with youth groups in Germany, France, Russia and Poland. He joined German youth groups on canal holidays in the Midlands, and invited them to use the Club as a hostel and a base from which to see England.

He organised summer camps, weekend cottage holidays in Wales, and activities including music, pantos, workshops, boxing, archery, hovercraft construction, motorcycle workshops, go-karting, drop-in centres for the young unemployed, and programmes on crime and drug-taking. He also oversaw renovations to the club’s HQ, including the introduction of a gym.

Alison added: “Despite funding problems, money was found due to his positive determination.

“In 1993 he and Rose married and the team became unstoppable, with Rose managing to secure much-needed funds.”

She said Ken has been described as ‘a super, helpful, friendly person, a brilliant raconteur and with great charisma’.

“He and Rose were essential elements in transforming the Club and laying the foundations of Bradby today,” she said.

“He organised the 75th Anniversary celebrations – and now the Club has just celebrated 100 years.”

Rose wrote a tribute to Ken on Facebook, which read: “This is a tribute to a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and brother.

“We will all miss your funnies, your appetite for life and all the good things in it.

“Ken’s motto was: ‘It’s all in the game plan.’ Work or play, it made no difference. He always tried and mostly succeeded with a smile.

“We will remember him with love in our hearts.”

Rose asked anyone who wished to donate in Ken’s memory to send donations to the Bradby Club, East Union Street, Rugby CV22 6AN, email john@bradby.org.uk or call the club on 01788 544344.

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