It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the passing yesterday (Friday) of long time North Down member Brian Davis after a long illness. The number of compliments and sincere messages on social media etc over the past 24 hours are a testament to how Brian was regarded by everyone who knew him.
Brian first joined North Down in 1982 after playing for Portrush and then becoming an integral member of the Lisnagarvey team. He was a tenacious midfielder who then captained the first eleven in his second year at the Club but three years later he had to retire from playing following a potentially serious head injury.
However the best of Brian was still to come as he introduced new coaching regimes at the Club. His first trophy successes as a coach came in 1989/90 when North Down, having been relegated in his absence as a player, won the Intermediate League and Cup.
In August 1997 during pre-season warm up games in Dublin, Brian sat down with senior members of the Club in long late night discussions and set out his views on North Down’s structure moving forward. These were all implemented and in April 1999 North Down were promoted back to the top league for the first time in 40 years. In 2009 Brian coached the Club to its first ever all Ireland success, the Irish Trophy.
Brian also coached the Senior Ulster and school teams and although he was not seemingly prominent in recent years at North Down, he was always there behind the scenes with advice and guidance and kept very much in touch with all that was going on. Winter and summer, he rarely missed either hockey or cricket at Comber.
North Down owes a lot to Brian for his dedication to the Club and he is and will be sorely missed. Our thoughts are with Rosemary, Alison and Colin at this time.