His sporting life

November 30th, 2010

Vaughan Williams’ passion and enthusiasm for sport influenced University of Nottingham athletes of all standards for nearly 33 years.

The former Director of Physical Recreation and Sport died, aged 63, last year. Now a memorial fund has been set up in his honour.

The Vaughan Parry Williams Coaching Fund was launched by England rugby legend, Brian Moore – one of Nottingham’s most successful sporting alumni – as he officially opened the £1.67m Vaughan Parry Williams Pavilion. The fund, which has already raised £80,000, will honour Vaughan’s ‘sport for all’ ethos by providing coaching to enable students to achieve their athletic potential.

In an engaging speech, Brian explained Vaughan’s contribution to the University, which has brought vast improvements to its sporting facilities since his own time here. Vaughan’s legacy – of continued development – would benefit everybody who enjoys sport, both competitively and socially, he said.

Brian added: “One of the things which holds elite athletes back in this country is a lack of proper coaching and that is where this memorial fund is focused.

“Now that the hardware is in place, the University needs the intelligence and input from people who can make the most out of the athletes’ talent and the facilities that they train in.”

Brian said he was proud to be a Nottingham alumnus, adding: “The league tables, both academic and sporting, prove that Nottingham is getting better. It is important to keep sport fixed in the University’s mind and ensure that it doesn’t run away with the idea that academia is the only thing that is important.”

Nottingham is currently ranked seventh in the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) rankings, and boasts more than 70 Athletic Union sports clubs, including canoeing, squash, rugby union, hockey, swimming, rowing and ice hockey.

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