img692 England Team SCO v ENG Jan 1966 John Havers (3)

2nd November, 2023

Badminton England are deeply saddened to learn that former Chairman and President John Havers has passed away at the age of 92.   

John made a significant contribution towards building the profile of badminton in England on and off the court throughout his career as a player, manager, selector and administrator. 

Born in Romford, his playing career started in the Barking League, but he was soon playing for Essex before his performances brought him to the attention of the England selectors.  

In 1965, he became the English Nationals men’s doubles champion alongside younger brother Bill Havers in the English National Badminton Championships.

John won seven caps for England and the pair became one of the best badminton teams in the country, finishing runners-up in the same tournament in 1964 and 1968. In 1967, he was also runner-up in the mixed doubles of the National Championships with sister-in-law Patricia Page.

img616 Nov 1963 (1)

John and Bill Havers, November 1963

Towards the end of his illustrious playing career, John was appointed as a selector of the English badminton team and managed the 1974 Commonwealth Games badminton team in Christchurch, New Zealand.  

He continued to hone his leadership skills off court in 1966, when he was elected Deputy Chairman of Badminton England, eventually becoming Chairman in 1996. 

John served as Chairman until 2004, when he was elected as President for the governing body. 

He represented Badminton England and many other sporting bodies, including Badminton Europe and the Badminton World Federation.  

John was an avid cricket and West Ham supporter, but he was most passionate about being an ambassador for badminton. 

His contributions were recognised by the BWF when he was awarded the Meritorious Service Award in 2004. 

In the same year, he was elected President and served for six years until 2010 alongside his role as a Trustee of the National Badminton Museum. 

In 2015, he was awarded again with the Distinguished Service Award, “in recognition of long and distinguished service to badminton throughout the world,” which will serve as his legacy for years to come.  

Following a long battle with Alzheimer’s, John passed away with his family by his bedside.  

Badminton England CEO Sue Storey said: “John had given a lifetime commitment to the sport of badminton and everyone at Badminton England and the whole badminton community are grateful for his passion and dedication to our sport. Thank you John and rest in peace.”  

John will be missed by his many friends throughout badminton, and the thoughts of everyone at Badminton England are with his family at this difficult time. 

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