Tribute Speech: Trevor Bell
West Chapel, Pinegrove Memorial Park Cemetery & Crematorium, Minchinbury
Friday 7th June 2013
Reading by Gary Knight (past BSA NSW Secretary & qualified referee)
Like Trev, I’m a qualified referee for the sports of snooker & billiards. I’m also a past Secretary of the BSA NSW and would like to share a few brief words with you on behalf of the Association and also Trevor’s refereeing colleagues.
Trev always had an interest in our sport and, whilst he would be the first to tell you that he was only a reasonable player, he really loved playing billiards. It was a real passion for him.
But whilst he was unable to leave his mark by way of a string of victories in major championships, Trev found another way to indulge his passion – and that was to become an official referee.
This way he could still be readily involved in both snooker and billiards, making a genuine contribution to the success of tournaments, and all the while ensuring that he had the best possible position to watch his chosen sport – which was standing right beside the better players and looking straight over their shoulder as they plied their skills.
Trev obtained his qualified referee’s Certificate in 1982 at the age of 41 and it was a role that would prove to fit him as snugly as his refereeing gloves did. He handled the duties with such distinction that he quickly earned a reputation as a very competent referee. As his experience grew so too did his commitment and desire to progress further, which saw him rise through the various levels of referee qualification to ultimately attain his Class 1 Certificate.
Trev went on to referee at many different levels of competition – from Club and District Championships, National Ranking Tournaments, State and Australian Championships, up to and including several International events and World titles.
In addition to time spent at the table actually refereeing, Trev was also active in an administrative capacity and would officiate at many tournaments in the important role of Referee’s Director. He served on the BSA NSW as State Referee’s Director on 2 separate occasions and was also NSW’s designated ABSR representative for many years.
His dedication to the sport gave him the opportunity to wear his cherished gloves at events where lesser referees could only dream of - and at times this saw him in charge of games involving some of the world’s best players. But no matter what the event, he would always perform his official duties in his renowned thorough and efficient manner.
Confirmation of Trev’s world-wide standing in the sport is the Gold Referee status that was bestowed upon him by the IBSF – this being the ultimate honour for a referee after officiating at International and World Championships.
Not content with just refereeing games, Trevor also wanted to put something back into the actual development of our sport’s future referees and this resulted in him becoming an Examiner in 1991. This is a very onerous role, but once again Trev excelled and over the last 20 years he made a significant contribution in ensuring that our sport’s refereeing ranks received adequate training and guidance.
Trev retired from active refereeing following health issues, but such was his dedication that he continued to conduct examinations for potential new inductees until only recently.
Referees don’t get a lot of acknowledgement in snooker and billiards, rightfully because the focus is on the players. But the referee is always there, doing what needs to be done. It is often said in our sport that if you don’t notice the referee during a game that he has done a good job – and this always applied to Trevor Bell.
Unfortunately the time has now come for us to finally notice and acknowledge Trev’s unstinting efforts. His contribution to snooker and billiards refereeing over more than 30 years has been immense and he has left an indelible impression on everyone he came in contact with.
Trev’s overall knowledge, mentoring ability and friendship will undoubtedly be missed by many people. But perhaps we can honour his memory best by remembering his calm and confident manner; his pride and professionalism; his dedication and commitment - and hold these qualities up as the perfect role model for the next generation of snooker and billiards referees to aspire to.
Trev, farewell old friend, it was an honour and pleasure to have known you.