Suffolk teenager who set up two volleyball clubs receives bursary

Sixteen year old volleyball player , Joe Warner. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

Sixteen year old volleyball player, Joe Warner, is the latest recipient of the Ron Ames Memorial Sports Fund - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

A Suffolk teenager has been awarded a bursary for his passion for volleyball and his commitment to setting up two clubs. 

Joe Warner, from Bury St Edmunds, was awarded the bursary from the Ron Ames Memorial Sports Fund, a charity set up to try and give small grants to young people. 

Ron Ames worked extensively with young people in sport, until he sadly passed away in 2017.  

left to right: Mervyn Evans, Joe Warner, Sue Garrod and Les Basham. Joe collecting his award

left to right: Mervyn Evans, Joe Warner, Sue Garrod and Les Basham. Joe collecting his award - Credit: Mervyn Evans

Dennis Tattoo, who was good friends with Ron, initiated the sports fund, and said: “The charity was really keen to support Joe, he is clearly doing a great job in local volleyball and is a worthy recipient of his bursary.” 

The 16-year-old started teaching himself how to play volleyball by watching videos on YouTube and practising at home by learning a skill, and then practising with a volleyball and bucket. 

He set up a volleyball club at his old school, King Edward VI in Bury St Edmunds, before joining Stowmarket Volleyball Club. 

Joe said: “The more I played the more I loved the sport and focused on improving to play at a higher level. 

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“However, as I progressed, there was less and less available because of how small the sport is in the country, so I planned to try and change that.” 

Sixteen year old volleyball player , Joe Warner. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

Joe Warner, plays for Stowmarket Volleyball Club, and has recently played in the Suffolk Cup Final - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Joe set up another volleyball club at the school he now attends, Abbeygate Sixth Form College. 

Joe said: “The money from the Ron Ames Memorial Trust will go a long way to helping purchase balls, equipment and covering for travel costs, which I plan to do more matches and competitions. 

“My goal throughout has been to play more volleyball myself, but to also try and give others more options to enjoy the sport to the full extent. 

I want to leave the sport at the school as an option, long after I am gone so others can enjoy it.” 

Sixteen year old volleyball player , Joe Warner. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

Joe is hoping that volleyball will continue to be a fixture at his schools long after he leaves. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Joe was presented with the award just 10 minutes before playing in the men’s Suffolk volleyball cup final. One of the presentation team, Mervyn Evans said: “Joe is a fine young man and is a thoroughly deserving recipient."

Joe was nominated not only for his personal playing contribution to the club but also for his involvement in setting up two junior clubs at his school and also his involvement in developing the ‘Team Suffolk’ squad. 

Sixteen year old volleyball player , Joe Warner. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

Joe Warner set two volleyball clubs up to try and get the sport more known and played in the country. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown