Dedicated St. John’s College teacher awarded for service on and off the field

Posted: December 8, 2021Category: Uncategorized

Dedicated St. John’s College teacher awarded for service on and off the field

A passion for sport and commitment to seeing the young men at St. John’s College grow on and off the field has seen a teacher awarded for his service.

Conor Bolton won the Steve Cotterall Memorial Trophy for Contribution and Commitment to St. John’s College sport at the school’s Sports Prizegiving held last month.

The Director of Special Character and Religious Education teacher says he is completely surprised by the accolade.

“I think I was just the next cab off the rank to be honest,” he said. “There’s a lot of other staff members who work a lot harder than I do.”

The Trophy is in remembrance of Steve Cotterall who passed away in 2009 and was passionate and dedicated to his sport and the young men of the college.

“You can only win the prize once so there are other staff members and other people that have won it already and are still doing amazing work for the boys, they just no longer qualify.

“The reason we get involved with sport at St. John's is so our young men grow as people, not just as sportsmen. That's the important thing.”

During his decade of service to the school, Mr Bolton has been involved with cricket and hockey and most recently set up a hockey foundation which is part of the St. John’s College Charitable Trust.

“You just fill the gaps and when people ask: ‘will you help?’ I just say yes. That’s how I got involved.”

Having previously played premier level hockey and coached in Zimbabwe and in New Zealand, Mr Bolton says he enjoys the sport, especially the strategy and technique behind the game.

However, health issues over the last few years have meant he hasn’t been as involved as he would’ve liked to.

“I sit in the background, help with the fundraising and manage and organize.” He also coaches one of the junior hockey teams.

The reason for the foundation was to raise much-needed funds to support development of the sport. It also encourages a lot more parent involvement.

He has enjoyed seeing the school’s hockey players hold their own against top-division teams. A highlight was the 1st XI team coming fourth last year at the national tier 4 tournament. Their previous best result was eighth place.

“The satisfaction is seeing the boys in tough games where they just grit things out and show great character.”

A number of staff and students received awards at the Sports Prizegiving, held in line with COVID-19 Alert Level 2 restrictions.

Of the special awards, Isaac Pilcher won the Nightingale Trophy for Effort in Sport, and his squash team won Team of the Year.

Fair Play Sports Person of the Year went to Hamish Scurr, while Logan Start won Official of the Year, and Bradley Campbell won the Russell Brothers Trophy for Outstanding Contribution to Sport.