Scarborough Pirates mourn loss of stalwart Billy Blackburn

The Scarborough Pirates rugby league team are mourning the loss of club stalwart Billy Blackburn.

Tuesday, 31st August 2021, 1:33 pm
Updated Tuesday, 31st August 2021, 1:39 pm
Scarborough Pirates stalwart Bill Blackburn, right, has passed away

A club statement said: "It is with great sadness that we share the sad loss of a Scarborough Pirates stalwart Billy Blackburn, who passed away on Thursday evening in York Hospital with his family at his bedside.

"Bill had struggled through lockdown with a number of ailments and succumbed to a final stroke on Monday.

"He would be familiar to the public in Scarborough town centre as the guy wearing rugby league shirts and shorts even on the coldest days, shirts of the Pirates, York Acorn and mainly his beloved Leeds Rhinos.

"Bill moved from York to Scarborough with partner Lesley on retirement. He was a member at the Civil Service and Castle Sports club.

"He lived for rugby league, as a player, referee, coach and finally touch judge for the Pirates."

Former Chairman Dave Marsden said: "Bill Blackburn was a larger than life character.

"He was instrumental in helping form the senior Pirates side in 2006. He was first at the games, checking every 10 metre to ensure no objects were on the pitch come kick off time to safeguard the players.

"He ran the line during games and was the last to leave the changing rooms having swept and cleared away the kit.

"Bill turned 80 in April this year, but still managed to get to the Pirates games this summer. He will be sorely missed by all present and past Pirates."

The Club send condolences to Bill's family at this sad time.