Jimmy Bryce - an appreciation

6th May 2020

The Games Committee was saddened to learn of the death earlier today of one of the finest runners ever to emerge from the town of Alva, Jimmy Bryce, in his 89th year.

He was steeped in the culture of pedestrianism, as old fashioned pro running was known and the highlight of his career was undoubtedly in winning the New Year Powderhall Sprint of 1956 over the full 130 yards distance and running from a mark of just 9 yards. He continued to compete well into his 8th decade but had by then moved to Cowdenbeath and turned to training other runners, and his Dunfermline and West Fife Athletic Club found its name regularly in the results sheets of Games across the country.

He was always willing to share his vast experience and would be found in his usual spot at the Games, on the curve beyond the finishing line, until ill health prevented his annual return to Alva. Many runners of today owe a great deal to JB as he was affectionately known and Alva's fields of youth runners owed much to his encouragement of his team to come to his home town, for which the Games will always be grateful.

Photo of JB was taken a few years ago when he was at Inverkeithing Highland Games, surrounded by five other winners of the New Year Sprint.

The funeral of the late Jimmy Bryce will take place at Alva Cemetery at 11am on Monday 18th May. Current restrictions will mean that only immediate family will be able to attend the graveside however people who wish to pay their respects may be able to do so by taking their place on the road leading to the Cemetery Gates provided that they maintain the relevant social distancing at all times. 


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