Colin Deaton Table Tennis Academy Club History
Colin Thomas Deaton, born in Hollingwood in 1939, discovered through attendance at a local youth club that he had a natural gift for the game of table tennis.
With the help of local coaches Colin went on to become a top junior international player and represented England on numerous occasions.
As was the norm in his era he started work at a young age and tried to carry on practicing and playing his beloved sport. It was very difficult, with work place and domestic issues taking preference, so he had to abandon his dream of being a top senior England star.
However, not one to give up, he decided to spend as much spare time as he could in helping other young hopefuls discover the game of table tennis and reach their maximum potential. It was from that point onwards in the early 1960s that table tennis in Chesterfield became a recognised force.
In 1969 he took the plunge and decided to try his hand at coaching and developing table tennis full time. Many school children were introduced to the game and they witnessed an exciting exhibition of top class play as Colin and the then No.1 Denis Neale set about motivating interest in the area.
Over the decades other clubs were established in the area giving an opportunity for young boys and girls to come along and take part in the sport. Hundreds of children have played table tennis at some point with many reaching great levels such as the World and Commonwealth Gold Medalist Alan Cooke.
Colin's greatest achievement came with the establishment of the Staveley Table Tennis Centre. This was set up at the Middlecroft Leisure Centre, opening its doors three nights a week to be inundated with young, middle aged and veteran table tennis players. The club became part of the ETTA Premier Club programme and later went on to establish club mark at advanced level.
Many players from the club have gone on to represent England at Cadet, Junior and now Senior level including the current Senior Mens No1, Liam Pitchford, former European Youth Gold Medalists, Sean Cullen and Daniel Lowe, multiple cadet and Junior Internationals Lucy Davidson and Isobel Ashley, Isobel is still a current member at the club and is currently in the England Schools (ESTTA) Under 19 Girls team.
The club has over the years mentored many people to achieve their coaching qualification as well as introducing an opportunity for people to become part of a family of dedicated volunteers.
In 2006 as a mark of respect and recognition on the death of its founder and mentor, the Staveley Table Tennis Club changed its name to the Colin Deaton Table Tennis Academy and has continued to thrive to this day.