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Tributes paid to Windsor Hockey Club member

Windsor Hockey Club stalwart Patsy Welford has died aged 71 after a lengthy illness.

Club members paid tribute to the former player and committee member, who passed away on Monday September 2, saying she was admired across the hockey world.

She joined Windsor Hockey Club in 1970 and held positions including ladies’ club captain, fixtures secretary and umpire secretary. Her status grew over the years and she earned the nickname ‘Queen of Windsor’ after masterminding an unprecedented triple for the ladies section in which all three teams were promoted in the 2000-01 season.

When Patsy, a former IT project manager, retired from playing five years ago, she became a mentor and match day coach for the Ladies 2s, who won promotion to Try-sports Division 3 last season.

Despite battling illness, Patsy, who lived in Fleet, Hampshire, was at home matches every Saturday until going into hospital, where friends say she kept tabs on the team and offered advice from her hospital bed.

Ruki Sayid, ladies captain, said: “Patsy was dedicated to the club and her influence was far reaching, from help-ing new players settle in to offering wise words of advice to long-standing members.

“She made sure everything ran like clockwork, from booking umpires to sorting out fixtures for the whole club as well as coaching on the sidelines.

“But her hockey world extended beyond Windsor to South Club Women’s Hockey League where she was a well-loved committee member and known right across the region from Basingstoke to Brighton and Oxford to Southampton.”

Windsor Hockey Club held a minute’s applause to celebrate her life at its annual Club Day on Saturday and will be holding a minute’s silence before home league games on Saturday, September 21 when the season starts.

A memorial match to mark her devotion to the club is planned.

Her funeral is on Tuesday.

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