In memory of Bill O'Neill

In Memory of Bill O'Neill

It is with great sadness that we must report the passing of Bill O'Neill

It is with great sadness that we must report the passing of Bill O’Neill, former Hertfordshire FA Council Member and founder of Boreham Wood FC

Bill was best known for his involvement at Boreham Wood, where he remained President until his passing last week. Having spent three years in the RAF as a young man, Bill returned home in the spring of 1948 and became involved in the establishment of the club, through the merging of local rivals Boreham Rovers and Royal Retournez.

He remained intimately involved as the club grew in stature through the years, including a very hands-on role in the construction of the new ground at Meadow Park, but most notably as Chair from 1968 until 1990, a period of significant development which saw the club rise through the leagues and reach the first round of The FA Cup for the first time.

During this period he would also join Hertfordshire FA as a Council Member, serving on many committees where his knowledge and experience was of great value in developing the game across the county, later becoming a Life Member after he retired.

However, it was Boreham Wood FC that was Bill’s true passion and he was extremely proud of the club and everything it achieved. In 2018 he accepted the prestigious Stanley Rous Memorial Trophy on its behalf following their exploits in The FA Cup the previous season, which saw them defeat Football League opposition for the first time.

Speaking at an event to mark the club’s 65th Anniversary, Bill said “Boreham Wood FC has always been my life, I have given so many years to it, and it has given so much to me”. We are sure that on the occasion of his passing there will be many across our football community who will be reflecting on what his efforts have given to them.

On hearing the sad news, Graham Phillips, Chair of Hertfordshire FA said:

“We are all deeply saddened to hear that Bill has passed away. Everyone at Hertfordshire FA sends their sincere condolences to his family and friends and our thoughts are with them at this most difficult time. He will be sadly missed”.

Brian Curtis, Vice Chair of Hertfordshire FA added:

“I had the pleasure of working alongside Bill for many years, having joined Hertfordshire FA at the same time in 1975. His knowledge of the game and his dedication to the club he founded were clear for all to see. The game is poorer for his loss”.

Funeral Arrangements

For those wishing to pay their respects, details of any service will be added in due course as appropriate following consultation with the family