Tribute: William Gordon MBE

September 1, 2021 | by Matt Halfpenny


England Boxing has been sad to learn of the passing of Amateur Boxing Association council member William Gordon on 17th August at the age of 90.

Awarded an MBE for Services to Sport in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List of 1982, he was also an England selector and team manager and it is understood he took the Great Britain team to the 1980 Moscow Olympics, where Tony Willis brought home a bronze medal.

He led the England at the ninth Acropolis Cup in Greece where they won four golds, one silver and one bronze to finish as the most successful nation of the 11 taking part.

Sqn Ldr Gordon was also secretary of the RAF and Combined Services Boxing Association.

“Giving service to the ABA was one of my father’s biggest passions and gave him much joy,” said daughter Alison Rayner.

“Coming from very humble origins in Gateshead, he really appreciated the opportunities it (boxing) gave young people who came from difficult beginnings in life.”

Originally a talented footballer who played for Leeds United Juniors, he also represented Northumberland and Durham at athletics.

When he joined the RAF, he travelled all over the world with the Combined Services Football Team and then became involved in Combined Services Boxing, becoming a referee and judge and then finally a selector for the England Boxing Team.

Gordon was a very gifted and entertaining after-dinner speaker and was extremely popular at boxing dinner events.