A judo coach who taught thousands of children at the club he ran for more than 45 years has died at the age of 82.

Ron Field never made a penny from his time at St Michael's Judo Club in Garsmouth Way, Watford, and it was his 'labour of love'.

Mr Field took the club on in 1973 and was still coaching in the weeks up until he died from cancer on July 28.

Hillingdon Times:

Omar Anaz has described judo at St Michael's as a "community like he has never seen before".

He said: "I knew Ron best as my coach at the club. The club was popular, but Ron never made a penny from running it – it was a labour of love. He would use any profits to pay competition fees and travel for families that couldn’t afford it otherwise.

"I think Ron barely aged due to all the goodness inside him and his positive attitude to life. If you'd met him a couple of years ago, you would never have believed that he was 80 years old.

"St Michael’s judo was a community unlike any I've seen before or since. It was a refuge where countless Watford residents of all ages could go to escape and not think about anything except Judo twice a week.

"Ron dedicated a significant portion of his life to ensure that every child who came through the doors had a great time and felt supported as they learned these lessons."

Hillingdon Times:

Ron pictured with two of his great-grandchildren

Mr Field leaves behind a huge family of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

His extraordinary work will be continued and taken on by his grandson Matt Chamberlain, who has been involved with the club since he was five-years-old.

Paying tribute to his grandfather, Mr Chamberlain said: "My grandad was an extraordinary man, who will be greatly missed by our family, friends and everyone who ever had the pleasure to meet him.

"He committed a great part of his life teaching judo in our community, dedicating 45 years to the sport and coaching the local children.

"I have decided, along with the help of many of his past students to keep the judo club running so that we are able to continue to help the community as he did for so many years.”

Mr Field's funeral was attended by more than 200 people on August 9 at West Herts Crematorium.