Don Copley – A Tribute to a Hornsea RUFC Legend

Don Copley sadly lost his brave battle with cancer on Thursday 20th August 2015 at Castle Hill Hospital, in Cottingham, aged 75. Don Copley was a Hollisman through and through, from joining the club in 1971 he gave so much to the club through his time, dedication and effort and was an active member of the club for over 40 years. Widely regarded as the greatest player to have played for Hornsea, Don captained the 1st XV for three consecutive seasons from 1972 to 1975. During this time Hornsea had the best seasons in their history, winning many matches, with a lot of much larger clubs falling to Hornsea. Don was the life and soul of the club, on and off the field. A larger than life character, his infectious laugh could always be heard in the Clubhouse. Don was not just solely interested in the rugby club, he worked tirelessly for the Sports Association. His work was rewarded with grants for improvements to the changing facilities and clubhouse that saw the home of sport in Hornsea grow and grow. He was the man for getting things done, when he walked into a meeting he knew what he wanted the outcome to be, and would have done his homework with meticulous attention to detail. After retiring from the game, Don was still involved on the committee, and doing valuable work for the Sports Association. Don secured funds for the improvements to the playing surfaces, and in 2004 the first team rugby pitch was moved to the south field with a substantial grant from the RFU. Don then had a plan for the clubhouse and changing rooms, and secured monies from the Ann Watson Trust Fund, which helped in the development of the new changing rooms, toilets, and disabled toilet. Don retired from the Sports Association in 2007. Don will be missed, his laugh will be missed, but his legacy still lives, and will go on.A sporting legend, and family man, our thoughts are with Eileen, Phil and Alison and the rest of the family at this sad time.

Steve Crooks

Leave a Reply