Norma Blaine: 1935-2021

The Amateur Athletic Association is sorry to hear of the death of AAA Founder Life Vice President Norma Blaine who passed away in December 2021 after a lifetime of service to athletics.

Norma’s interest in athletics began with race walking and she was part of a successful race-walking team throughout the 1950s and 60s. Although Norma continued to race-walk into the 1960s, the focus of her work turned towards coaching and the development of women’s athletics in the UK. She became a very active member of WAAA, leading the Midlands delegation for many years and acting as team manager on several occasions both at home and abroad. She held the post of Hon. Secretary of Midland Counties WAAA and became Vice Chairman of WAAA.

She officiated as a senior technical official at the AAA Championships each year.

At Birchfield Harriers, in addition to coaching, her volunteer roles included team manager, technical official and club committee member. She reached the office of club chair and two terms as Club President, the first woman to achieve these positions. She also held various administrative roles in BAF (the forerunner to UKA), Midland Counties, the UK Women’s League and the National Young Athletics league which became the YDL.

Norma was awarded an MBE in 2010 for her services to the sport.

A spokesperson from the AAA said, “The AAA Board are very sorry to hear that Norma Blaine has passed away. As a Founder Life Vice President and Trophy Trustee she was a great supporter of the AAA. Her death is a great loss to the sport.”

Photo by Mark Shearman