FORMER Barrow Raiders director of football and Great Britain amateur hooker Dave Robinson has died, aged 65.

Raiders coach Paul Crarey led the praises of an unsung hero.

Crarey said: “Dave was very passionate and put in many hours of unpaid work for both Barrow and Dalton.

“At Craven Park his first priority was the welfare and the support of the players.

“Not one to seek publicity for the work he did, Dave put money into making sure the lads had the equipment on training nights amongst other things.

“He was very knowledgeable and wanted the best for Barrow and though for many months and not in the best of health you couldn’t hold him back.

“At Dalton he was a big help to myself when I coached them and along with the likes of chairman John Winward and secretary Ian Gordon made an impact making sure the club is where it is today.”

Rugby-mad Mr Robinson was also a personal friend of Crarey who added: ”Dave was a genuine bloke, very honest and loyal and supported me along the way.

“He was determined to get along to pre-season training but in the end he was not well enough.”

Mr Robinson played his rugby for Roose and Walney Cents - going on the first ever Barla tour to Papua New Guinea in 1979 where he had the honour of scoring the first tour try.

Crarey never came face-to-face with Mr Robinson on the field but added: “I heard he was very good and I would have had a tough time.”

Mr Robinson signed for Roose under 19s as a sixteen-year-old along with Colin Leake and together they played a big role in recruiting players, including some from the rival code.

John Winward was in charge at Holbeck Park when Mr Robinson came on board.

He said: “Dave was a very good player. Energetic and very industrious, he had a big heart.

“Dave moved up a ladder into our open age side and along with many other youngsters his first season saw him help Roose to victory in the top eight play offs.

“In those days there were some very good teams. We finished eight in the league and beat Millom in the final.

“At Dalton he was not afraid of rolling up his sleeves and brought in sponsorship deals putting his hands in his own pockets to help the young lads at the club.”

Such was his rugby skills he was poached by Walney Central where he shone for several years.

Following his playing days Mr Robinson took up body building to keep fit.