A Great Figurehead in the Field of Sport for the Disabled
Written for Campden Hill LTC
We are sad to inform you all that Liz Dendy, who was our president from the late 90’s until 2012, died two weeks ago at the age of 90 yrs.
Liz was a member of the club over 50 years ago when I joined as a junior and I remember her with huge affection. She was incredibly encouraging towards all the younger players, always with a warm smile and twinkling eyes. She was a former first team captain as well as an accomplished player and continued to actively participate at the club until her late 70’s.
I last saw Liz around four years ago when I happened to be walking past her house in Chiswick and she immediately asked me in for a coffee. We lounged in her sun-drenched garden for a couple of hours and reminisced about the club and some of its quirky characters, those dusty clay courts, and the clubhouse, which was essentially some kind of rickety cricket pavilion, at a time when the food consisted of either sausages or baked potatoes. We laughed over the fact that we had to book our potato before we went out to play or we would go hungry!
I always knew Liz was a significant figure in the area of sports disability at the Sports Council, for which she earned an OBE, but until I read some recent obituaries, was not aware of just how revered she was in her field.
Scottish Disability Sport described her as an incredible visionary locally, nationally, and internationally and a “remarkable British lady whose influence on the development of disability sport was immeasurable”.
The International Paralympic Committee paints a picture of a woman of passion, commitment and expertise, whose influence on sport for participants with cerebral palsy was hugely significant. She was also highly active in the field of riding for the disabled.
Our former General Manager, Paul Holloway, says of Liz: “What a formidable treasure she was, generous with her time, unflagging in her enthusiasm and fun, always fun. No matter what the event, Liz would be there, cheering our teams, handing out prizes, giving speeches or just providing support.”
Larry Coyne remembers her fondly as being incredibly supportive during his time as Club Chairman when Liz was President. “She was a wonderful stabilising influence on the club. She was always very supportive of the committees, giving them wise counsel during various times of crisis, particularly those leading up to and during the close down of the club at the end of the 90’s when our very existence was threatened. Few will come close to Liz in terms of her positivity and kindness. We all owe Liz a big thank you.”