RIP Denis Dunford
January 1, 2000
It was with the deepest sadness that I learnt today of the passing of Rovers’ President and former Chairman Denis Dunford.
Along with his son Geoff and long time friend Ron Craig, Denis took Rovers from near bankruptcy in the mid-eighties away from Eastville into an unprecedented move to Bath City’s Twerton Park. No Football League team had ever ground-shared with a non-league club before but the vision and drive behind the move saved Rovers from extinction and, within just four years, to a first ever Wembley final and to the Championship of the 3rd Division – a remarkable achievement. The Supporters Club Committee was right behind the Dunford’s scheme and we provided accommodation and almost every last penny to help the Rovers to survive. This brought us into close contact with Denis who acted with great vision and fortitude throughout. Through all the pain and angst Denis was always kind and generous to those us who served the club and I never heard a bad word spoken about him. He remained a top man through into his Presidency and the eventual return to Bristol, something I know he was so proud to achieve. It is a great shame that Denis did not live to see the final move, that into a new stadium at UWE, which is now so tantalisingly close.
Every Rovers fan owes Denis enormous gratitude and the Supporters Club sends its sincere condolences to Geoff and all the rest of his family. Geoff himself has been very unwell of late and I would like to take this unfortunate opportunity to wish him a full and speedy recovery during what must be a very difficult time.
R.I.P. Denis, one of Rovers’ greatest servants.