DESPITE not having been able to play a match since March 19 due to the coronavirus outbreak, members of the Shoestring-chargrilled sponsored Chippenham & District Sunday Football League held their annual awards night on Zoom.

Unlike any usual season where nearly 30 awards and cash prizes are handed out on the night, this year saw only four presentations made.

After finishing the last campaign with 32 teams, the league saw four more clubs decide not to re-join, however two new clubs, Calne United FC and The Castle FC, are signing up for the 2020-21 season.

They are hoping to be able to re-start the 55th season on Sunday, September 6, subject to government and FA advice.

No divisional winners, runners up, cup winners or individual awards were possible, so just the Best Secretary (sponsored by Manny Schneider) and Gordon Blatchford (sponsored by Andy Hillier) awards were presented for the last campaign.

There were two special awards, to John Haigh and Vivienne Gardiner, whose long association with Westbury Rangers and the league has sadly come to an end as they are one of the two teams dropping out.

Westbury Rangers FC were formed in 1970 by Eli Mannessah, Gordon Blatchford and Rod Coleman and originally known as Westbury QPR.

Viv’s early involvement saw her attend matches to support her late husband Neil, who was became manager of the team along with Gordon Blatchford in 1979. Viv then became a major part of both the Club and the League when in 1980 she took over the role of secretary, a position she held until this May. She was registration secretary for the League from 1981-1987, and won the Gordon Blatchford award in 2004.

Over the years Rangers have operated a Reserve and First team, with their greatest achievement on the pitch coming in 2005, when three years after the Neil's death, and under the guidance of son Shaun, Rangers lifted the Premier Division title, which was dedicated to the memory of Neil. That same season Rangers were beaten Knockout Cup finalists, a fate they would suffer in both 2008 and 2010.

Along with her secretarial duties for Westbury Rangers, Viv's other roles have included kit washer, tea maker, fundraiser and she even helped out behind the bar at Meadow Lane, which become the club's home base many years ago. Viv also gave up many hours of her time to help out at Westbury United on a Saturday.

Former chairman John Haigh was rewarded for his 18 years’ service to the Sunday league by becoming a life member. After a lifetime in football, he moved to Wiltshire and became vice-chairman at the start of the 2002/03 season and took over as chairman the following year, a post he held for eight years, then being vice-chairman until 2019. He also served on the Wiltshire FA until recently, was the league’s representative to the County FA of which he was made an honorary member, and with over 50 years involvement with football he has also been honoured by the Football Association.

The League's Secretary of the Year award went to Stuart Green, from Warminster, of Wednesday Warriors FC, and the Gordon Blatchford award to Cader Esoof, from Trowbridge. This is presented annually to an individual, or club who the league believe has gone that extra bit to give something back to grass roots football.