Dave’s first meeting with Harry Redknapp was when Harry joined Portsmouth as Director of Football in 2001. Straight away Harry and Dave got on well and Dave was offered a year’s contract. Oxford came calling for Dave in March 2002, which was round about the time Oakley was first diagnosed. Despite not being at the club anymore, Harry was quick to make contact with Dave when he heard the news of Oakley, to offer his help in anyway he could.
Harry was a generous man with Oakley and would visit him in hospital from time to time, to see how he was. During periods when Oakley was strong enough, Harry would invite Dave and Oakley to the club, where they were always made welcome.
Harry supported the charity as it got off the ground, and when Oakley passed away, Harry once again supported the charity in some of the first fund raising events.
Despite having a busy schedule through football seasons, Harry has always offered his time and help whenever he could. When asked if he would be a trustee of the charity, he had no hesitation in saying yes.
Having Harry involved helps to show people that the charity is moving forward and looking to grow from strength to strength. We can’t thank Harry enough for putting his name to the Oakley Waterman Caravan Foundation and giving it the support that he does.
Dougie first came to Gosport at the age of 17, to join the Navy and with the exception of a brief spell in the 90’s, when he returned to his native Scotland, he has been a Gosport resident ever since.
Dougie has always been involved in sports, playing Rugby, Local Football and American Football amongst other sports. Once his boots were hung up he got involved in coaching and managing youth football where he organised trips away for his youth teams in both the UK and Europe. He was a joint founder of the first pre-season 11-a-side tournament for Gosport Borough Youth FC and took on the role as Vice Chairman of the club.
When his own team finished a successful time at Youth level Dougie took up roles as U18’s Manager and then Joint Reserve Team Manager at Fleetlands where he had a 100% record of League Titles.
Following this, Dougie was invited up to Locks Heath to take on a First Team Manager role, only to find that the club on the brink of folding. Perturbed by the thought of a club with a 108 year history folding, Dougie took up the mantle to keep the club going. Taking on the roles of Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer, he single handedly kept the club going. Over an 8 year period the club grew and in 2012/2013 the Club won the Hampshire Premier League, only losing 1 game all season. The club were on the brink of promotion to the Wessex League, but due to Ground Grading and other restrictions the club were denied their rightful place and Dougie took the decision to retire from Football.
His retirement lasted 2 weeks, when a chance meeting with Dave Waterman led to him getting involved and organising the first Solent Swim held by the Oakley Waterman Caravan Foundation. Since then Dougie has been involved in organising many of the Charities events and helping the Charity where he can.
Tania was born in Margate Kent and grew up in Ramsgate. In her youth, her passion was horses and show jumping in which she competed at Wembley in the Horse of the Year show, and at Olympia. At the age of 19 she decided to take life in a different direction and moved to Gosport after meeting her husband Paul.
After having 3 boys, Tania became involved in Paul and her children’s passion – football. With Paul as the Chairman of Gosport FC, Tania took on the role of Club Secretary. She also currently works in the family business with Paul and his brother Gary.
Tania first met Lorraine and Dave through football and mutual friends but soon became involved with the Charity on the first Ladies 100 mile Bike Ride, which she still continues to support.
As far as Tania is concerned, “Dave and Lorraine’s determination and dedication in keeping Oakley’s wish alive is inspirational; they are 2 of the most selfless people I have ever met, and having watched the Charity grow so rapidly over the past 5 years and involve so many of our local community, I am honoured to be a part of the next step forward”.
I met Dave Waterman at Portsmouth Football club at the end of his time with them and at that time I was the main sponsor for Gosport Borough and persuaded Dave to sign for them. We have gone on to become great friends over the years and Dave and his brother Lee have been subcontracting for my company for over ten years so the friendship has grow even stronger.
I do not have a specific role within the charity so will help out wherever required and purely because of my position as MD of a large contracting company I have the opportunity to source sponsorship for some of the upcoming events from my suppliers. I am in the process of retiring so can commit more time to the charity.
As a retired Police Officer of 23 years, my son Harry and I founded Absolute Running in 2011 so that the community could have a Hub through which they could organise and discuss local sport. This has so far been a success and from it, other sporting groups have come to life e.g. Bayside Tri, Shack Sharks open water swimmers, 545 RunClub and The Breakfast Club and our blue ribbon event, Gosport’s Golden Mile. This has proven that sport is a powerful tool in bringing communities together and we are great believers in keeping the faith in local good causes.
Duileach Ryan was involved in health care for over thirty years, and has been a trustee of the Charity since it’s formation. He has known Lorraine and David Waterman for the past sixteen years, and knew Oakley from when he was a baby.
The support role he plays in the charity contributes to keeping Oakley’s wish alive, and providing the same happy experience for clients that Oakley had in his final days holidaying at the Pagham caravan park.