Stamford AFC and Cottesmore AFC lead the tributes for sports photographer Geoff Atton
Tributes have been paid to a popular photographer whose passion for sport made him a familiar face on the area’s sporting scene.
Geoff Atton, of Mill Lane, Cottesmore, passed away last week after a short illness. He was 88-years-old.
A regular at Stamford AFC’s home games, Geoff also had a long allegiance with Cottesmore Football Club where he served on their committee.
A tribute from the Daniels said: “Stamford are saddened to advise that our dear friend Geoff Atton has passed
“Geoff has been a regular photographer at the Daniels for many years and was popular with supporters, officials and players.
“Our thoughts are with Geoff’s family and friends at this sad time.”
With the club’s Northern Premier League South East Division campaign on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak, the Daniels’ players individually took to social media to video a 30-second silence in his memory.
Manager Graham Drury explained: “With no football planned, we didn’t want Geoff’s passing to be forgotten so all my staff and players did a 30-second silence in his honour.
“It’s so sad that we won’t be seeing this lovely man at our games again, but knowing that he will be now with his wife again after she passed away last year fills my heart.”
Cottesmore AFC, in their tribute, added: ”The club are sad to hear of the passing of Geoff Atton, a familiar face around Westray Park who had a long involvement with our club.
“Geoff will be sadly missed and our condolences go to his family from all at Cottesmore AFC.”
First team manager Rich Giblin commented: “It’s very sad news. Geoff has been around the club for as long as I can remember. I always looked forward to seeing his photos in the Rutland & Stamford Mercury and Rutland Times each week.”
Geoff was also a keen cricket fan during the summer months and could be regularly seen at Oakham, Uppingham and Market Overton
A tribute from Oakham Cricket Club said: “Geoff was a true legend, always keen for a chat when sitting in his chair on the mid-off boundary with his camera. He will be sorely missed throughout the county.”
Uppingham Cricket Club added: “We were very sad to hear that very popular local sports photographer Geoff Atton has passed away.
“Geoff enjoyed many a cricket tea at Castle Hill while photographing the cricket action and was always a most welcome and popular
Mark Hudson, chairman of Market Overton Cricket Club, commented: “It’s such sad news.
“I’d known Geoff since I was a lad from him taking many photos of Market Overton’s games.
“He was a true gent and I’m sure he’ll be missed by many involved in local sport.”
James Bedford, sports editor of the Rutland & Stamford Mercury added: “On a personal note, I would like to thank Geoff for his friendship and invaluable contribution to the sports pages of our papers over many years.
“I know that I speak for all of us at the Mercury in that he will be sorely missed. We have truly lost a great friend and a real character.”