​Tributes have been paid to a Wakefield man who dedicated his life to sports, education, and community service

​Tributes have been paid to a Wakefield man who did a great deal for sport in the UK.
Robin BarronRobin Barron
Robin Barron

​Robin Barron who died on February 12, aged 84, led a remarkable life; he was much loved by family and friends and greatly admired by colleagues.

He was born in Morley on February 3, 1940. The eldest of three siblings, he excelled at many sports, in particular rugby.

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Robin went on to Brasenose College, Oxford where he allegedly studied geography, returning home regularly to play for Morley RFC.

Robin's career included teaching at Wimbledon College and Ermysteds in Skipton, working as an education officer in Carlisle, and a 24-year career at Sport England.

The most enjoyable part of his job was in assisting a wide range of school, amateur sports, and community sports clubs securing government funding.

Career highs included being seconded to the 1991 World Student Games in Sheffield and the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

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He met his future wife and love of his life Jackie at The Painters Arms in Drighlington in 1964. Married in 1969 they went on to have two children, James and Rachel and four grandchildren, twins Abby and Jack (18), Jamie (12) and Ena (9) all of whom he adored.

Daughter Rachel said: “He was a good man with a big heart and a generous spirit; he had an innate need to promote inclusivity for all and social justice wherever he went.

"His influence on the world of sport is widely felt and he leaves behind quite the legacy, both professionally and personally. I’m so proud to call him my dad.”

Beyond his professional achievements, Robin was deeply involved in community initiatives, including serving as chair of Vox, a government-created community empowerment organisation.

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He played a pivotal role in Disability Sport – Yorkshire, promoting opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in sports.

He also enjoyed his role as a governor at Wakefield College and Newton Hill Community School.

Sir Rodney Walker, former chair of Sport England and Wakefield Trinity, current chair of the British Basketball League, paid tribute and said: “Robin did a great deal for sport in the UK but particularly in Yorkshire. He leaves a proud legacy.”

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