Head groundsman The All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club Wimbledon
I became an assistant Groundsman when I left school and progressed to the position of Head Groundsman at the age of 24. I joined the I.O.G as a member in 1961 and spent four years as the Honorary General Secretary and then three and a half years as the chairman of Education.
I succeeded the late Jim Thorn at Wimbledon after spending eighteen months working alongside Jim while he showed me how to handle the press, match officials and the overall management of the Venue.
My job is high profile, so I am reliant on my highly trained and motivated Groundstaff. Following events it is always the Groundstaff collectively that receive the thanks for the quality of the courts. Mind you the old analogy still stands that if things go well my staff always say 'we got it right, Eddie', if things go belly-up they say 'Eddie you got it wrong'.
Groundsmanship has provided me with a great social life, I have met and made many friends and the job still holds great interest for me. Since 1990 court improvements have not stopped and research has been ongoing at Wimbledon with the help of Dr Andy Newell and will probably never stop.
I take great pleasure in being able to pass on my experiences and wealth of knowledge to others in and out of the industry. As a man that enjoys stretching his mind and broadening horizons I find that the Internet offers almost endless possibilities. The formula of 'touch of a button information' that Pitchcare have created, means that all Groundsmen can pass on or obtain information quickly and efficiently. The ability to have information so close to hand is important to me but also vital for the younger generations to come.