John KNOCK (Pen Portrait)

“Parents of Leigh children should put up a memorial to John Knock.”  This is the view of one of his colleagues with which few who have played their sport in Leigh as youths will argue.

His total commitment to coaching our young cricketers and table tennis players, and his enthusiasm, have encourage several to achieve significant success and all to enjoy their sport.

John, a chartered accountant with a Redhill firm, came to the village in 1939 at the age of two.  He attended the village school where his mother taught under the headship of Miss Naish who still lives in Leigh.  He completed his school education at the Judd School and played his first cricket for the village in 1953, becoming Secretary in 1966, a pot he still retains.

Although John has never played football for Leigh, he has run as far as most of the players waving his linesman’s flag and offering timely advice in the process.

His knowledge of the local sporting scene is reflected in his membership of the Sevenoaks Sports Council, whilst his professional training is put to good use as treasurer both of the Leigh Table Tennis Club and of the Tonbridge Table Tennis League.

Away from the sports area, John is an accomplished after-dinner speaker and poet, and an enthusiastic member of the The Village Stompers jazz band where he blows a mean trombone and occasionally contributes with a gravelly voice.

A true man of Leigh, he is a village councillor, a trustee of Leigh Village Charities and an active campaigner for the interests of the community whenever it is threatened by the likes of British Rail.

But it is as a champion of the youth of Leigh that John will be recognized above all his other contributions to our village life.

Parish Magazine: September 1990:  no author