The former assistant manager, director and head of youth nominated for Football League hero award
DICKIE Danson has been declared a Football League hero.
The Football League has announced a new award to recognise a stand out contribution from individuals involved with Football League clubs and the former assistant manager, director and head of youth was the Shrimps’ nominated person.
Together with then Manager Jim Harvey, Dickie was instrumental in creating Morecambe's successful Youth Development programme in partnership with Lancaster & Morecambe College which produced a string of young players who went on to play in the Football Conference for Morecambe.
A number of those graduates went on to enjoy successful careers in the Football League, including Danny Carlton, scorer of the winning goal at Wembley in 2007 to clinch promotion from the Conference, David Perkins (now with Blackpool), Garry Thompson (Notts County) and Jonathan Smith (Luton Town).
Dickie was also heavily involved in founding the club's EPPP programme in 2012. Together with then Chief Executive and current Director Rod Taylor, Dickie travelled the length and breadth of the country on fact-finding missions and attending meetings in advance of preparing a report and making recommendations to the club's Board.
The outcome was Morecambe becoming a Category 4 Academy with aspirations to develop a Category 3 structure, Dickie initially heading up the operation as Academy Manager.
Illness a couple of years ago forced Dickie to reduce his workload within the youth set-up but his long association with the club continues as Senior Academy Scout and Match Day Co-ordinator.
Shrimps director, Rod Taylor, said:
"Dickie is a credit to himself and he shows unbelievable dedication in everything he does at the club, having helped out with the first team, reserves and youth team during my time at Morecambe. He’s a great person and an absolute credit to the club, Mr Morecambe as I regard him.
"I recall one Christmas Day, a few years ago, when we were trying to protect the Christie Park pitch from snow and the freezing weather ahead of the Boxing Day fixture, and both our wives were on the phone as we'd delayed Christmas dinner in our two households to continue working on the pitch!
Stewart Drummond, who joined the Morecambe ranks when Dickie held the position of Assistant Manager, and who now combines playing with his role as the club's Head of Youth and Reserve Team Manager, said:
"No one person at Morecambe FC can be said to have fulfilled more roles over such a long period of time than Dickie Danson, from caretaker manager of the first team to being synonymous with the club's youth development programme. For nearly 25 years he has been working tirelessly for the betterment of Morecambe FC behind the scenes in an understated, but richly appreciated manner."
Each of the 72 people nominated will receive a special commemorative glass plaque to mark their inclusion in the list. It is the first time that every one of the 72 Football League clubs will be honoured at the annual awards ceremony as part of a special way to mark the 10th year of the event.