1 Getting Personal with Ian Darler

IanDarler FishingIan Darler - a spot of wind! Must be the bacon butties!


Who are you? Ian Darler, Stadium Manager and Head Groundsman at Cambridge United FC.

Family status? Married with two children.

Who's your hero and why? Pele; simply the greatest player I have ever seen and, as kid playing football, I was always Pele when kicking the ball against the garage wall.

What would you change about yourself? Not much really, other than I wish I could learn to keep my mouth shut instead of saying it how it is.

What's your guilty pleasure? Pasties and home baked cakes.

What's been the highlight of your career so far? Being approached by John Sillett in the eighties to be the groundsman at Coventry City when they were flying high, and winning the FA Groundsman of the Year awards.

Which three people, living or dead, would you invite to a dinner party? Brian Clough, Prince Charles and Tom Kerridge.

If you could be anyone for a day, who would it be and why? David Cameron - to sort the country out.

Do you have any bad habits? I spend too much time at work - and suffer from wind, according to my wife!

... or any good ones? Always willing to help other people and generous.

Do you go to bed worrying about the next day's workload? Constantly.

What are you reading at the moment? Pole Angler.

What are your pet peeves? Mobile phones as you don't get two minutes peace and quite nowadays.

If you could go anywhere right now, where would it be? The Lake District as it has special memories.

What's the best part of your job? End of season renovations, and working with my volunteers on the pitch who are my fishing mates; it's just a good craic.

… and the worst? Dealing with people who have no knowledge relating to groundsmanship and they think they know best.

Do you have a lifetime ambition? To help raise enough money through the Charity group Cambridge Charity Fund Raisers that I run to help find a cure for cancer.

Favourite record, and why? Ruby Ruby Ruby by the Kaiser Chiefs; it was in the charts when my daughter Ruby was born.

Who would you choose to spend a romantic evening with? My wife, as she is one in a million.

If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Retire from work and take all the family on a special holiday.

If you were to describe yourself as a musical instrument, what would you be and why? A drum, as I am told I have a loud voice that booms out.

What's the best advice you have ever been given? My first boss during my apprenticeship told me you should always wash your tools after use ... and my wife agrees!

What's your favourite smell? Bacon being cooked.

What do you do in your spare time? I am a very keen angler and also run a charity group called Cambridge Charity Fund Raisers, we raise funds for a number of charities and individuals.

What's the daftest work related question you have ever been asked? The playing surface at Cambridge United was covered in frost and a director asked if it would be worth putting the floodlights on to warm the pitch up.

What's your favourite piece of kit? Verti-drain.

What three words would you use to describe yourself? Honest, hardworking, sensitive.

What talent would you like to have? A mind reader.

What law/legislation would you like to see introduced? The elderly that have paid their taxes all their lives should receive more support instead of having to sell their homes to pay for their care.

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