Leon Field can look back with great pride on a sporting career which has delivered success in both playing and management.
Born on April 25, 1980, today marks the latest birthday of this fine all-rounder from Abergele.
A former pupil of Ysgol Emrys ap Iwan, Leon began playing football at the age of nine and at one time was selected for Welsh Schoolboys trials.
As a senior, he played for Conwy United in the Welsh Premier – briefly in the same team as Rhyl and Bangor City legend James Brewerton – and had a short spell with Colwyn Bay before moving to village club Llansannan, where he admits he truly fell in love with football.
Firefighter Leon also switched sports occasionally and played regularly with Abergele Rugby Club, before becoming manager of football team Abergele Rovers, who won the Clwyd League Division One title in 2006-07 before going on to land back-to-back trebles in 2009-10 and 2010-11.
In 2017-18, Leon burst back onto the local football scene when he helped reform Kinmel Bay men’s team – and instant success was achieved.
As joint-manager with Andy Thomas, Leon inspired Kinmel to the Vale of Clwyd and Conwy League Premier Division title at the first attempt.
A fresh challenge awaited Leon in 2018-19 when he became joint manager of Prestatyn Town with Ryan Turner.
The Seasiders had just come down from the Welsh Premier League into the Cymru Alliance, but Leon and Ryan did a steady job, bringing in a lot of talented young players, before the club’s greatest-ever manager Neil Gibson returned to take over at Bastion Gardens.
Leon stayed on as general manager and performed a fantastic role behind the scenes before stepping down in September 2020.
In February this year, Leon announced he was retiring from all football-related matters to concentrate on family life with lovely wife Helen and young daughters Megan and Erin – and not to forget Tyson the No 1 dog !
It is also important to mention Leon’s brother Gary, a fine sportsman himself over the years who often played in the same football teams as his brother.
Leon also enjoys combat sports, having taken part in some boxing contests as well as being a massive fan of the hardest game.
I’ll close with a tribute to the man himself – a kind-hearted, caring friend who devotes so much of his time to helping others. His friendship and support is something I value very much.
Happy birthday Leon – have a cracking day with your loved ones.