Cumbernauld athletics coaches scoop national award

Cumbernauld AAC award winners Donald Pegrum and Archie McBride (pic by Bobby Gavin/Scottish Athletics).
Cumbernauld AAC award winners Donald Pegrum and Archie McBride (pic by Bobby Gavin/Scottish Athletics).

Two stalwart founder members of Cumbernauld AAC have been rewarded for over 30 years of commitment to their local community.

Donald Pegrum and Archie McBride were named Club Coaches of the Year at the scottishathletics annual awards dinner.

Donald (above, right) and Archie received their awards at a glittering ceremony in the Hilton Hotel in Glasgow.

Over the past 32 years the pair have coached over 850 athletes in Cumbernauld between the ages of nine and 18 .

They coach the North Lanarkshire Development Squad, undertake primary and secondary school athletic sessions, help organise the highly successful annual Scottish Cross Country Relay Championships at Cumbernauld and represent the club at regular scottishathletics meetings.

They received the award for “selfless and unconditional voluntary commitment to athletes of all abilities at Cumbernauld AAC week in, week out, all year round”.

Cumbernauld South Councillor Paddy Higg, himself an athlete, hailed the duo for their amazing dedication to athletes and athletics in Cumbernauld and Kilsyth.

He said: “They set up the club from scratch and it has grown considerably to over 160 athletes of all ages now.

“Their commitment is exemplary to the community, for 32 years, all year in all weathers for selflessness and dedication and all done without one pence payment.

“I am a throws coach and was for several years a veteran athlete and proud to compete in the club colours of Cumbernauld but no-one has dedicated themselves to athletics in the area the way Archie and Donald have.”

The club just missed out on a second award to go with the Coaches of the Year accolade won by Donald and Archie.

Cumbernauld were among five nominees for the Impact Club of the Year award but were just pipped by Shetland.

Over the past four years Cumbernauld AAC club coaches and parent helpers have collectively worked very hard in restructuring the club which has grown from just under 70 athletes to now just over 160.

Working closely with scottishathletics, and learning from best practices kindly shared by other clubs, the committee put in place a development pathway that has allowed athletes to experience the fun in taking part in a variety of events from track and field (indoor and outdoor), cross country, road running and most recently trail running.

To move forward the club has also evolved from its twice weekly club nights and now offers seven days of training sessions for athletes.

Over the coming months Cumbernauld AAC will begin a new chapter in their history by formalising a transition plan to a new track and field facility, which is due to open in July 2017 at Greenfaulds High School.

This transition plan will be underpinned by the appropriate key elements of the scottishathletics Club 20/20 initiative which will allow the club to start realising the vision of becoming an athletics club that is at the heart of the community that promotes athletics for all.