Tributes for QPR president Winton

09 February 2010 06:03
Marc Bircham has led the tributes to QPR's honorary president Harold Winton, who died on Monday.Winton, who had been suffering with cancer, provided much-needed financial help for the club and funded the signings of Bircham and Dan Shittu. [LNB]Former midfielder Bircham said: "I owe him a lot. It was my dream to play for QPR and he helped make it come true. [LNB]"Rangers had no money and I was close to going somewhere else, but Harold stepped in. I'll always be grateful." [LNB]Bircham, now youth team coach at Loftus Road, is a lifelong QPR fan and joined the club from Millwall in 2002. [LNB] Harold was liked and respected by so many people Gary Waddock Winton and his sons Matthew and Alex also financed Rangers' signing of striker Doudou and the capture of defender Shittu from Charlton. [LNB]Former QPR player and manager Gary Waddock, now in charge at Wycombe, said: "I'm so sad to hear that Harold has passed away. He was a wonderful man. [LNB]"He was a real character and his love for QPR always shone through. It was a pleasure to know him. [LNB]"Harold was liked and respected by so many people, myself included, and he was very supportive of me personally. [LNB]"I got on really well with him and liked him a lot. He'll be very sadly missed." [LNB]In 2002, Winton was part of a consortium that attempted a takeover of the west London outfit but failed to reach an agreement with former owner Chris Wright. [LNB]After Rangers came out of administration, he continued to provide financial assistance and worked on behalf of the club during difficult times. [LNB]After a spell as a director, Winton resigned from the QPR board in 2004 and was given the title of honorary life president.[LNB] The club has lost one of its foremost characters, and will be the poorer for Harold's passing Former QPR chief executive Mark Devlin Former QPR chairman Nick Blackburn said: "Harold was helpful and supportive of the club when it was most needed," while Bill Power, who became chairman in 2004, described Winton as "a unique, lovable rascal who can never be replaced." [LNB]Ex-Rangers chief executive Mark Devlin added: "He cared deeply and passionately about QPR. He was a real old-school gentleman, and great fun to chat with. [LNB]"The club has lost one of its foremost characters, and will be the poorer for Harold's passing." [LNB]Winton's funeral took place on Tuesday afternoon and QPR will hold a minute's silence in honour of him before their home match against Ipswich Town.

Source: BBC_Sport