League-winning boss dies

The Bexhill Town Athletic league-winning team of 1966/67 with manager Don Pellett far right
The Bexhill Town Athletic league-winning team of 1966/67 with manager Don Pellett far right
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The most successful manager in the history of what is now Bexhill United Football Club has died aged 89.

Don Pellett, who twice led Bexhill Town Athletic (as the club was then known) to the Sussex County League title in the 1960s, passed away on Friday June 27 at The Conquest Hospital of complications following a fall and a broken leg.

Born in Sidley on June 12, 1925 as one of eight children, Don was a talented attacking player for the likes of Hastings Rangers, Sidley United and Bexhill.

His achievements on the pitch included winning the Sussex Intermediate Cup, a feat later repeated by his grandson Graham Morris, who played for Sidley and Little Common in recent years.

Don became manager of Bexhill in 1965, and led the club to the Sussex County League title in 1965/66 and 1966/67 with 46 points from 30 games in both seasons (only two points were awarded for a win in those days).

He remained at the helm until the early 1970s, overseeing a runners-up finish in 1967/68 (with only two points fewer than the previous two years) and fourth place the year after that.

Don, who was also a boxer for Bexhill Athletic Club in his younger days, married Mary in 1954, and they brought their family up in first Eversley Road and then Linden Road, where Don lived for 55 years.

He leaves four daughters - Donna, Susan, Angela and Kathryn - as well as 11 grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

The funeral will held on Monday (July 14) at Eastbourne Crematorium from 11.30am, immediate family flowers only. Donations should be made to Arthur C. Towner Ltd in Albert Road.