Our Ambassadors


Bobby Hassell signed for Barnsley FC from Mansfield Town in the summer of 2004.  

He was named Players' Player of the Year, Fans Player of the Year and Disabled Supporters' Player of the Year for the 2008–09 season.

When Mark Robins joined Barnsley following the start of the 2009/2010 season, Bobby was initially dropped out of the team, yet soon found his way back in due to consistent performances and a high work rate.

Bobby is a committed Christian and he credits his faith as helping him overcome his temper and giving him an abundant sense of peace.Bobby was made Barnsley vice-captain in the summer of 2010 and the following season was another successful one for Bobby who made his 200th league start for Barnsley against Millwall in January. He was made club captain for the 2010/11 season. Proving his versatility, Bobby even had to go in goal in a League Cup tie with Rochdale after Ben Alnwick was sent off and Barnsley had already used all 3 of their substitutes.

HAROLD "DICKIE" BIRD OBE - Retired International Cricket Umpire

The son of a miner, he gained the nickname 'Dickie' at school. When a knee injury put paid to playing football professionally, he followed his second love, cricket. 

In his early career in Barnsley, he played club cricket at Shaw Lane in the same team as Geoff Boycott and journalist and chat show host Michael Parkinson, who became a lifelong friend. In 1956, Bird signed up with his home county, Yorkshire. After his county career, he coached and played league cricket before becoming an umpire in 1970. Three years later he umpired his first international, a test match between England and New Zealand.

One of Bird's strengths was that he was able to manage and earn the respect of some of the more volatile players in the game, sometimes by using his infectious humour. At the beginning of his 66th and final Test in 1996, the two teams – India and England – formed a "guard of honour" as he came out, and he received a standing ovation from the crowd.

Dickie is proud of his hometown and is regularly seen at both Oakwell supporting Barnsley FC and at Shaw Lane supporting both Barnsley CC and Yorkshire CCC. 

JENNA DOWNING - World Number 1 Inline Skater

Jenna is the world’s number one female inline skater and ten times British Champion. A natural competitor, Jenna has competed in rollerblading events since she was eight and became the youngest ever female to turn pro aged 12.

Since then she has represented her country across the globe in major international events, scooping the NASS title three times over, winning an X-Games silver medal in 2002 and becoming LG Action Sports World Champion in 2008. To date, she is the only European female to perform the 900-degree spin.

Jenna grew up in Barnsley and has had to work hard to get to where she is today whilst facing a multitude of obstacles. As an Athlete Mentor for Sky Sports Living for Sport, Jenna hopes to show young people that whatever their background or circumstances it is possible to achieve anything they choose to in life.


Sue was introduced to Table Tennis when by her parents when she was just seven years old.  Her Mum and Dad used to play competitively in the local league and Sue also fell in love with the sport.

Sue describes her proudest achievement as winning a gold medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester, Great Britain, with her friends and family in the crowd. She also succeeded in winning a silver medal in the women’s Singles class 4 at the 2003 European Championships in Zagreb, Croatia when she was seven and a half months pregnant.

Alongside her training commitments, Sue works as a year six teacher at Shawlands School. She has a BA (Hons) Degree in Business Studies and Financial Management, along with a PGCE, Certificate in Counselling, Level 3 ETTA Coach/Level 2 UKCC and many other qualifications. She previously taught on GCSE's, A Levels and Degree Courses as well as being a Student Welfare Officer, before converting to become a Primary School Teacher. Teaching is something she always wanted to do, particularly being able to  be able to teach Maths, Science and Music as a specialist teacher and being able to coach young people in Table-Tennis. In addition, Sue is Mum to daughter Lauren, aged seven, and son Ryan aged 13.

Sue was awarded an MBE in 2009 and Honorary Doctorate for her Services to Table Tennis and Sport for young people and for all her voluntary coaching and charity work. She has been the Patron for the Rainbow House Charity for Disabled Children for many years and she is incredibly proud of the work they do to help so many children. Her ambitions are to develop her coaching role and promote sport for all, in addition to continuing her charity work to improve the lives of disabled children.
Sue was also awarded BBC Disabled Sports Personality of the Year in 2002 and 2006 for Yorkshire and Lincolnshire respectively.

Share this on FacebookShare this on Twitter
Powered by SmartDeCat ® SmartSite Builder™ | Valid XHTML 1.0 | CSS 2.0+