Derek Hodgson, who passed away earlier this month, had many friends among the FWA, notably James Mossop, who was still meeting him and other former colleagues on a regular basis as part of the ‘Ampersands’ social group.
Jim spoke to the Sports Journalists’ Association website last week: “I’m shocked and saddened to learn of his sudden death. I was drinking and dining with him and fellow old-timers only last Wednesday. At 87 he enjoyed a good innings.
“Derek was our leading light in the Ampersands. He conducted proceedings and kept us all informed with clever, humorous emails.
“There was a small turnout last weekend, Don Hardisty, Hoddy, Peter Johnson, Peter Shaw, Peter Gardner and me. We meet in the Laurel and Hardy Room, most fitting for those who saw us spend half an hour trying to get Hardisty’s mobility scooter up the pub step.
“The battery died and then we were snookered until an old boy passing by touched one button and the scooter was up and running. With the landlord laying a makeshift ramp (two planks) we got Don into the pub. Hoddy was quietly amused.”
(with thanks to the SJA)