The king of the ring!
A “scallywag” who changed his life through boxing has been recognised as a Teesside Hero for his decades spent helping hundreds of young boxers.
By his own admission, John Dryden was a “scallywag” as a child, but boxing helped put him on the straight and narrow – and he’s spent much of his life passing on the magic of the sport to young Teessiders.
Now, having run Stockton’s Wellington Amateur Boxing Club for 30 years, his contribution to the lives of hundreds of young boxers has been recognised with a Teesside Hero Award.
The charity Teesside Philanthropic Foundation presents the awards to unsung community champions - volunteers who go above and beyond the call of duty to help make the area an even better place to live.
Great grandfather John, 79, received his award in a surprise presentation from one of his former boxing pupils, Alisdair Beveridge, the owner of local firm and Philanthropic Foundation patrons The Build Directory.
“It’s so nice of people to do this,” said Middlesbrough-born John, who lives in Overfields.
“They must think I’m doing a decent job, which is appreciated. I don’t get paid for running the club.
“Boxing helped form me and has always been a big part of my life, so this is my way of giving something back.
“Like most sports, boxing can give young people confidence in life.”
John Dryden and Alistair Beveridge with some of the club’s youngsters