End of an era for league
The Southern Counties East League are mourning president Roy Vinter, who died on Friday aged 76 following a long illness.
A former referee, Mr Vinter, who lived in Ickham near Canterbury, moved to the county in 1971 and joined the Kent League list of officials the following year.
He was appointed secretary of Whitstable Town in 1979, joined the Kent League management committee in 1980 and was appointed secretary-treasurer in 1990. He stepped down as secretary when he was elected president last year.
Association honoured him with a 50-year long service award last year.
Mr Vinter cut his footballing teeth on Teeside. He qualified as a Class 3 official with the North Riding County (Minor) FA, starting in local leagues, before being promoted to Class 1. He continued to officiate while on national service.
His career in league administration began in 1961, when he was appointed registration secretary of the Middlesbrough & District Youth League, before taking over as treasurer of the North Riding County (Minor) FA.
Work then took him to Yorkshire in 1966 where he joined the West Riding FA, officiating in the Central League and the West Yorkshire League, before being appointed to the North Midlands League linesman’s list.
A move to Slough followed for the same reason three years later, refereeing in the Spartan League.
FA vice-chairman and Kent FA chairman Barry Bright led tributes to Mr Vinter.
He said: ”I think Roy’s passing is the end of an era as far as Kent League football is concerned, coming so soon after the change of name, having been such a great servant and working so tirelessly on behalf of it.
“I was sad to hear the news, although he had been ill for some time.”
SCEL referees secretary Ray Brown said: “Roy was a personal friend for 30-odd years ever since he moved to Kent.
“He was always reliable – if he didn’t know something he would get to know about it, which was a blessing and a comfort. He will be terribly missed by everybody.”
Funeral arrangements will be announced shortly.
MY BALL: Kennington (yellow) take on Borden
BIG LOSS: Roy Vinter