Woodrush are mourning their former chairman Brian Smart who passed away earlier this week after a brave battle against cancer.
Smart was a familiar figure in North Midlands rugby through his long association with Woodrush and as father of the club’s fly-half Steve Smart, who also enjoyed a successful spell with Dudley Kingswinford.
His first involvement with Woodrush was as first team manager but he took on the role as chairman in 2003 and continued to serve as a fine ambassador for the club until his death.
“His early focus was very much about having a competitive playing side, whilst employing deep core rugby values of friendship, respect, enjoyment and he offered the warmest of welcomes to anyone who came to the club,” said Matt Elwell, who succeeded Smart as chairman.
“Brian led the club with great integrity for eight seasons and was instrumental in the growth of the Woodrush rugby family. He was awarded the highest honour of Life membership when he stood down in 2011.
“He stayed very close to the club during some very challenging times over the past few months but made a huge effort to attend as many games as physically possible.
“He always kept the scores and had a very keen eye for the match detail, ,which he would happily discuss before , during and after every game.
“He also attended training sessions to keep up to speed with the latest moves , ideas and developments within the team.
“Brian had many friends within the club but was also very well respected by the local rugby community at all the clubs he visited on behalf of Woodrush.
“Brian was a great rugby man but mostly a wonderful, warm-hearted human being.”
Brian Smart’s funeral will take place at Redditch Crematorium on Monday May 18 at 1.15pm and afterwards at Woodrush RFC.