NewsDavid Kimpton RIP

20th August 20212

It is with deep sadness that we must announce the passing of one of our Honorary Life Members, David Kimpton, a great ambassador, and servant of the sport. We would very much echo the sentiments expressed in the following personal tribute penned by Brian Stote:-

David Kimpton, who passed away yesterday, at the age of eighty, first trained as an architect, but took on a new career in the 1990’s as the full-time employee of the British Petanque Association in the role of National Secretary, which post he held from 1991 to 2004. In his retirement year, he was awarded Life Membership of the BPA for his services and that was carried forward through the British Petanque Federation, the English Petanque Association and the newly established Petanque England. In his early playing years in the late 1980’s, he joined Coventry Petanque Club and was based with the club for several years until he transferred to Half Crown PC at Stockton. David, Natalie Turner and myself played in tournaments as a regular triple for some years, often under the name Peeping Tom, a reference to the character in the Godiva legend.

David knew huge numbers of people in the sport, both domestically and abroad, and was a qualified umpire and coach. He was a respected adviser on all things related to petanque and was one of the most influential forces in the development of the sport in this country.

He was no mean player, having represented England in the Home Nations on more than one occasion and his region, first West Midlands and later Heart of England, from its very first entry into the Inter-Regional Championships when they were held on the car park of the Hospitality Inn in Poole, Dorset, in the late 1980’s.

He and I won the BPA Over-50’s Pairs, held at The Haycock at Wansford, sometime in the 1990’s (records lost) and travelled extensively to competitions in various parts of the country over several seasons. When a Warwickshire Olympics was held, the petanque being played at Stockton even before the establishment of the Half Crown club, David, Jan and myself came away with the medals.

He was a quietly spoken man, but people listened to him because of his great knowledge of the sport and his experience as an organiser. He was a personal friend and allowed me the privilege of sitting with Jan on the night that she died while the family had a short break from their vigil at the hospice, an experience for which I remain eternally grateful.

David was, in petanque terms, a legend in his own lifetime and those who have been involved with the sport for any length of time know just how great his contribution was. His passing will sadden many people greatly, but those fortunate enough to have known him will have a host of happy memories to reflect upon and count themselves all the richer for having him in their lives.

Brian Stote


  • Josette Whick

    21st August 2021 at 11:13 am

    As I knew David Kimpton well I would like to contribute this short tribute:
    “The BPA (as it was then known) had an office in Coventry during the 1990’s which was solely managed by Dave. For six years during that time I helped him out two days a week on a part time basis. This was in the infancy of internet and new technology so most of the office work was done on paper by hand! He was always patient, thoughtful and kind and a pleasure to work with. Through our dedication and interest in petanque we met at matches over the ensuing years and I am sad that I will not meet again”.
    Josette Whick
    Solihull Petanque Club


  • Ged Barton

    21st August 2021 at 3:48 pm

    It is with sadness I read this news regarding the passing of David Kimpton.
    He joined the Management team of the BPA when John Roberts was the President, following the resignation of the previous Secretary, Garth Freean, and the closure of the BPA office in Leatherhead, as the Association’s first employee. He set up, organised and ran the Coventry office by himself until it became obvious that additional help was required, hence the arrival of Josette.

    In addition to his Secretarial duties he was responsible for the planning of all BPA events as well as administering our membership records, dealing with insurance and many many other matters.
    At that time we had around 4500 members, all the records being recorded onto a basic computer by David, later with help from Josette. No “Love Admin” was around then to provide assistance.

    He was very good in preparing the Annual Reports to the Sports Council in support of our annual grant of £20000 pa. In particular his prepared presentation to the Sports Council in 1996 was crucial in as both being able to convince the SC to extend this grant for another 4 years.

    THe foundations of the PE we know today were laid by David and I am sure that all of us who had the pleasure of knowing him will join together in saying ” thank you” for all you have done.

    RIP David – It was a pleasure to work with you.
    Ged Barton
    A 90’s BPA President



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