Chairman of the board!

PUBLISHED: 16:13 04 August 2006 | UPDATED: 22:02 28 May 2010

Eddie Woollard celebrates his 80th birthday

Eddie Woollard celebrates his 80th birthday

EDWIN Eddie Woollard, March s amateur champion darts player for decades, is celebrating his 80th birthday this Sunday with a family party at the United Services Club. Eddie, who was born in March, developed an interest in the game when he was about 10.

EDWIN 'Eddie' Woollard, March's amateur champion darts player for decades, is celebrating his 80th birthday this Sunday with a family party at the United Services Club.

Eddie, who was born in March, developed an interest in the game when he was about 10. His father bought him a board and he practised at home, sometimes with the help of his sister Mavis, who used to pile her hair on top of her head and let him throw the darts through it. His father soon put a stop to that.

Eddie joined his first darts team, the White Swan, when he was 19.

He threw his last competitive dart for the United Services when he was 70.

During those 51 years, while working as a maintenance supervisor for British Rail in March, he amassed more than 1,000 trophies and many titles, including singles champion.

A broken shoulder caused him to give up darts in 1996. His double knee replacement also means he cannot stand for long periods.

"I wanted to carry on but couldn't keep up with the youngsters," he said.

But Eddie has not given up all connection with the darts world.

He is friends with local professional Kevin Painter and changes the points on his darts, a highly skilled and specialised task. He has a dart board set up in his kitchen and admits he uses it occasionally while cooking.

Eddie, of Highfield Road, is a keen crib and dominoes player.

He plays for the United Services teams and helped the crib team win the National Championships in 1999.

"I still love playing games," said Eddie, "but now I have to do something where I'm sitting down."

Helping Eddie celebrate his milestone birthday will be his three sons, five grandchildren and his first great-grandchild.

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