John Robertson has been named Volunteer of the Year at the 2017 sportscotland Coaching, Officiating & Volunteering Awards

COV winner: John Robertson

Find out more about the 2017 Volunteer of the Year

One of Scotland’s leading sports volunteers has had his contribution to sport in the Kingussie, Badenoch, area recognised with the Volunteer of the Year award from sportscotland.

John Robertson, 51, has been awarded the accolade for his commitment and passion for volunteering at his local shinty organisation, Kingussie Camanachd Club.


Having been both a player and a volunteer with the team, John has dedicated most of his life to the club and supporting the local sporting community. As an active member of the club’s committee since 1989, John has always hoped of increasing the club’s membership and raising the overall awareness of the sport.

Over the past 12 months John has been the driving force behind the club’s expansion, sourcing over £172,000 from various funders to cover construction, electricity and pitch costs. John hopes that the whole community will benefit from the new development along with the club’s men’s, ladies, youth and secondary teams.

Praise for John

John was nominated for the award by legendary fellow club member Ronald Ross, one of Scotland’s most famous shinty players and the only player in shinty’s history to have scored 1000 goals.

Ronald said: “As a volunteer, they don’t come much better than John.

"He has been an inspiration to the whole community who have really got behind his expansion project.

"Current and ex-players, committee members and supporters have really backed the new developments – it’s given the whole village a real sense of purpose and excitement. I hope the new developments will be the catalyst for other shinty clubs to follow suit. 

“I honestly can't imagine the amount of time, phone calls and meetings John has dedicated over the last year, bringing the expansion to fruition. I truly believe there is not a more deserving Volunteer of the Year than John Robertson.”  

John picked up his award on an evening when inspirational coaches, officials and volunteers from across Scotland were celebrated across 13 categories for their significant contribution to sport over the past 12 months.  

The prestigious sportscotland Coaching Officiating and Volunteer Awards 2017 were held on 8 November at Stirling Court Hotel where leading athletes congratulated the winners and thanked them for their work in supporting and developing sport in Scotland.

Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland, said: “Every year across Scotland, thousands of dedicated sporting enthusiasts devote their time, knowledge and skills to help others achieve their sporting goals.

"Our Coaching, Officiating and Volunteering Awards provide us with a chance to celebrate the great sporting achievements that are taking place every day and congratulate individuals on their commitment to Scottish sport.

“John is the perfect example of how hard work and dedication can certainly pay off. Not only has John helped facilitate the expansion to benefit the current teams, but the centre will leave a lasting legacy for the next generation of players and supporters.

"It’s evident this expansion has helped bring the community together and encourage more participation in sport.

“At sportscotland we are implementing a world class sporting system at every level in Scotland and we can only do so with the support of the many dedicated coaches, officials and volunteers.

"I hope that many more people are inspired by our winners’ stories and recognise the opportunities that exist to get involved in sport at every level from volunteering at your local club or school to coaching or officiating on the world stage.”

At the event, hosted by BBC Scotland’s Bryan Burnett, coaches, officials and volunteers involved in swimming, athletics, lawn bowls, tennis, football, rowing, shinty and curling were recognised for the many hours they dedicate to helping others compete at the best level they can.

Find out more

Be inspired by the stories of all the 2017 COV winners.

Visit the sportscotland website for information about the COV Awards.  

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