FUNERAL details for the highly respected local football coach, Alf Bilby, have been announced following his passing on May 18 at the age of 87.
Mr Bilby was the driving force behind a Thundersley-based soccer school for more than forty years and held close ties with Southend United, notably during Steve Tilson’s successful spell at Roots Hall Stadium.
Between 1975 and 2016 numerous youngsters benefited from Alf’s training methods at his weekly Soccer Star School.
Southend Sunday League secretary and Mr Bilby’s son-in-law, Guy Pell-Ilderton, told Yellow Sport; Alf was a much-loved and respected man. “He was an avid football man but his real passion in life was his family.
“He will be dearly missed by his daughters, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and all who loved him. Remembered by friends throughout Thundersley and Southend.”
Due to current restrictions, a private family funeral will take place at Pitsea Crematorium on Tuesday, June 16 and a celebration memorial will be arranged for all to attend at a later date.
For those who wish to pay their respects, the hearse will be leaving Stibbards in Hadleigh at 11:15am, travelling through Thundersley village via Dark Lane School and Kingston School.
Family flowers only, but donations, if desired, to the British Heart Foundation or National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society will be warmly received.
Please contact S. Stibbards and Sons, 4 Commonhall Lane, Hadleigh, Benfleet, Essex, SS7 2RN (01702 558717).