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  • Writer's pictureCity Of Salisbury ARC

Club remembers former stars

Sadly we have recently lost 3 club members over recent months.

Images left to right: Nikee Hirst - Mike Humby - Silvia & John Fry

Firstly the wonderful Nikee Hirst who was taken before her time at the age of 50. Nikee was an amazing athlete who started off her sporting career as a heptathlete with Yeovil Olympiads and competed at a top level. At Salisbury she was casually spectacular re- writing our vets records, helping everyone within the team and applying great gusto to everything she did. It won't be even small comfort to her family but Nikee really did pack so much energy into her life and achieved more in 50 years than the rest of us will in a life of 90 years.

Until a couple of years ago, Mike Humby was club President. Current club President Dave Amey has written a few words about Mike. I have been asked to write a few words about Mike Humby, a friend of mine for over 60 years and a former club life member who died recently. I am sure that there are many within our club who have never met Mike, but like so many who have gone before him he played a big part in our clubs’ history. Mike joined the then Salisbury and District Athletic club in 1955 while still at Bishops Wordsworth’s school and developed into a very useful sprinter. In 1963 he was part of the 4 x 110 yds relay team that set a club record of 44.7, beating the mighty Southampton squad in the process, and on their own track. This time remained quicker than the metric equivalent for nearly 40 years. A serious hamstring injury curtailed Mike’s sprinting career, but he continued to train and competed on the road and cross country for several years though at a slightly slower pace. Soon after leaving school, Mike had become the club treasurer whilst training to become a chartered accountant, a post he held for many years. He later became the both club and Wiltshire AA chairman. When Mike stood down from these posts, he became involved with the organisational running British wheelchair athletics at Stoke Mandeville and for a while was the treasurer. Lord Margadale, formerly John Morrison the local MP had been the only club President since the formation of the club in 1946 and on his death, Mike was asked to fill the position. He remained President until 2018. The success of clubs like outs have always depended on the help of a lot of dedicated people and Mike was certainly one of those.

Finally, we received the sad news that Sylvia Fry passed away last week. Both Sylvia and her late husband John were the heartbeat of the club over so many years. It is probably some comfort to her friends to know that she is now back with John who passed away at the start of last year as they were such a devoted couple. Many of you will remember Sylvia, she was a stalwart of the club for many a year. Over the years Sylvia has served countless different volunteering roles including chief clubhouse manager, kit manager and keeper of everyone's keys and personal effects on a Wednesday night. Sylvia and John would travel to every Hampshire RRL event to cheer on the Salisbury runners. It was always a pleasant sight to see both Sylvia and John around the race courses, providing a much-needed boost! Sylvia also assisted with coaching, officiating at matches and it is road races which is probably what most of us will remember her for, but we shouldn't forget her earlier active days in cycling and other sport. A lovely lady who gave freely of her time to support the club in any way she could. She let you know if you weren't in her good books but had a heart filled with kindness and with a cheeky sense of humour. Just as with John, Sylvia will be a long time in our memories.

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