Winds of change blowing through as Tornados chairman steps down

Burnley's one and only American football club has marked the end of an era.

Tuesday, 3rd October 2017, 5:03 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th October 2017, 3:11 pm
Burnley Tornados retiring chairman Ivan Jackson with his successor, his grandson, Cameron Stewart and Tracey Stewart, general manager, who is Ivan's daughter and Cameron's mum.

For Burnley Tornados founder Mr Ivan Jackson stepped down from his role as chairman, a position he has held since the club was launched nine years ago.

After announcing his retirement at the club's annual presentation night at Holt House in Colne on Saturday, Ivan then introduced his successor... his 22-year-old grandson, Cameron Stewart.

Cameron, a lieutenant in the RAF, has been playing with the Tornados since he was a boy and he was happy to take on the mantle and keep the family tradition going.

Players at the Burnley Tornados AFC presentation night.

Ivan, who was presented with gifts including an engraved glass tankard, a teddy bear with a handknitted Tornados top and hat, and a spade as he is keen gardener, said he had mixed feelings about stepping down from the role at the club he founded.

He said: "Now the time has come I feel like I don't want to go but I know that the post is in safe hands with Cameron and I will certainly still be involved with the club.

"It makes me very proud to see the young people who join our club grow in confidence and maturity through the game."

As a surprise for Ivan, Cameron presented his grandfather with the first Tornados lapel badge the club has had made to raise funds.

Players at the Burnley Tornados AFC presentation night.

And Ivan will become the first ever honorary chairman of the club that is a member of the Pennine Academy of American football.

Catering for teams from the ages of 10 upwards the club has a variety of disciplines, from action packed flag football to technical kitted games.

During the evening players were each presented with a medal and the coaches and volunteers received gifts after parents of players held a collection.

The trophy winners were as follows:

(Under 12 flag) Blossom Bates (most improved player) Harrison Hill (most valuable player).

(Under 17 flag) Ryan Parker (most improved player) Khan Durnall (most valuable player)

(Kitted) Toby Scott ( most improved player of the year) George Nicholson-Wilson ( rookie of the year) Oliver Norwood (offensive player)

Shane Thompson (defensive player) Tom Lockett (players' player) Tom Doherty (most valuable player)

Rebecca Robins (chairman's award)