- David Taylor was named one of four Mitsubishi Motors Volunteers of the Year
- Taylor has been chairman at Cannock RUFC for 19 years
- Find out more about the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer Recognition Programme
There would be no Cannock RUFC without 72-year-old David Taylor. Not according to those at the club who nominated Taylor for a Mitsubishi Motors Volunteer of the Year Award this season.
Taylor has been the chairman for 19 years at Cannock and has overseen the club’s remarkable transformation in that time.
“I’ve never played rugby in my life”
Born and raised in Inverness, Taylor had never been exposed to rugby until he moved to Staffordshire 25 years ago.
“My son started playing rugby for Cannock, I was just a parent spectating but I’d never played a game of rugby in my life.
“As with all rugby clubs they were looking for volunteers so I started helping out.”
‘Helping out’ at Cannock soon became a lot more. Taylor has held every role at Cannock in that 25 years from chairman to barman – two positions he still holds to this day.
“It’s hard to describe what Cannock was like all those years ago without swearing,” says Taylor.
“Let’s just say it was a bit of dive, and not the best looking club but it was friendly and full of good people. It was our dive.”
From humble beginnings, Cannock has undergone a complete transformation in no small part down to the hard work and dedication of Taylor and other volunteers.
They now field three senior teams, a women’s team and a junior section. The players’ facilities and clubhouse has been overhauled and are now some of the best in the county.
Budgets and Bacon Baps
Walk into Cannock on any day of the week and you are likely to find Taylor, who juggles his responsibilities as chairman with tasks such as making bacon baps for parents on the weekends, pulling pints and cleaning kits.
“It keeps me active and busy,” says Taylor when describing his motivation. “It’s the main part of my life these days."
“My wife helps me at the bar every weekend, my son is now a coach with the minis and juniors and my two grandsons are also now playing.” "Volunteers are the heartbeat of rugby..."
Taylor’s incredible dedication to Cannock was recognised at the Mitsubishi Motors Volunteers Recognition Programme awards last month where he was named one of four winners.
“I was surprised to be there at all and so be a national winner is fantastic. The thing that really pleased me was to see so many young volunteers there. Volunteers are the heartbeat of rugby so it is really important to have that next generation.”
Despite talk of the next generation, Taylor has no plans to stop volunteering and when asked what’s in store for the coming season he replies without hesitation, “our next big target is floodlights for our 1st XV pitch, we would like them in place next season.”
25 years after stepping into Cannock as a spectator, Taylor has become the club’s most integral member.
David Taylor was one of four Mitsubishi Motors Volunteers of the Year alongside Adam Padgett, Jane Waterhouse and De'Shaun Elliot. Keep an eye out on EnglandRugby.com for further features on the rest of the winners.