Tributes pour in for Dudley Kingswinford RFC legend
Tributes have been paid to a rugby stalwart who spent four decades with one club.
Graham Robbins spent more than 40 years involved with Dudley Kingswinford RFC in various roles as a player, chairman and then president.
The proud Welshman, described as ‘the life and soul’ of the club, passed away on Tuesday following an illness.
Rugby secretary Pete Edmonds said grandfather-of-five Mr Robbins will be greatly missed by all involved with DK.
Mr Edmonds said: “Graham was the life and soul of the club – a massive part of it.
“He was originally a player, served as chairman and moved to be president.
“He will be very sadly missed and was one of those people who was the face of DK when you went down to the club.
“Everyone at the club will miss his smiling face and him telling us about how his grandchildren are getting on.”
Mr Robbins, who lived in Kingswinford, leaves behind his wife Joan, children Darren and Nicola and grandchildren Sophie, Tom, Jack, Harvey, and Zach.
He worked in the steel industry, moving from his native Wales to South Africa before settling in the Black Country in the early 1970s.
A club statement said: “Dudley Kingswinford also took up a large part of Graham’s life, from player to rugby chairman, then in later years president of the club.
“Take some time and look through the team photos in the clubroom and see how many he is on.
“Graham was one of those guys that you immediately associated with DK, and his presence will be missed at first team games, both by the DK stalwarts and the committee men from all the clubs we currently play.
“Always a true rugby man many a memory of Graham will come to those who accompanied him on club tours prior to the leagues.
“He even took his kit on the 1991 tour to the Isle of Man, and played stand off for the Wanderers.
“Originally, from the principality he came to DK via South Africa and found a home amongst the large Welsh contingent at Heathbrook.
“Graham’s memory will burn bright at Heathbrook.” Scores of people have paid tribute to Mr Robbins on Facebook.
Among those is Edward Smith who wrote: “Such sad news. An absolute legend of the club.
“Will be sadly missed by everyone who met him.
“Not only a great rugby man, but a fantastic kind hearted gentleman who gave so much.”
Martin Edward posted: “Such sad news. A top man that always had time for a good chat.
“An absolute legend. An inspiration. Terrible loss. Thoughts his family. Absolutely gutted. RIP Graham.”
Pete Stinton commented: “So many unforgettable memories of this larger than life character.
“A true DK great who always greeted you with a big smile and his infectious laugh would warm you.
“My thoughts and prayers to Joan, Nic, Darren and family.
“Rip Gra xxx”
Robert Harding added: “Such sad news to hear.
“Graham was quite simply a top guy and a true rugby gent who was admired by many, many friends throughout the Midlands and beyond.
“My condolences to the family.”