Rotary Club of Belfast

John Savage Trophy


The John A Savage Memorial Trophy and Bursary is awarded by the Club annually to the individual or group selected as giving great service to the Community. Inaugurated in 2009 the Cup has been specially refurbished and created in memory of former member the late John Savage.


  The 2017-18 Trophy has been awarded to

A project between Shankill & Ardoyne communities that works with young people to enhance their personal development through an informal approach it was founded by two dedicated Youth Workers, Alan and Thomas, who identified the need to enable, empower and support young people. It has developed extensive links not only throughout this island but also internationally and links with YouthAction and the Belfast Activity Centre (both previous recipients of the John Savage Award). In addition, the project is well respected by statutory and voluntary sectors in the area. The name ‘R-City’ is a play on “Our–City” and CITY stands for - Communities Integrating Through Youth.

President Rosemary presented the Cup and Bursary on Monday 18 June to Thomas Turley (Leader) and Pierce McConnell (former participant now a volunteer). More information on R-City can be seen here.

The John Savage Trophy has been created from an historic award – the RR Bowman Silver Cup which, with thanks to Eric Rainey and Past President Craig McClelland has been refurbished with a new wooden plinth which displays the winners from 2009. R R Bowman was a Club member who died about 50 years ago. He was a great horticulturist and had particular ability in growing beautiful scented roses. The Silver Cup, given by him to our Club, was awarded for many years at our Autumn Flower Show, for the best Rose in Show. It was often won by the late Rotarian David A. Dorman, O.B.E. K.O.L - a Belfast Rotarian for well over 50 years and also a wonderful horticulturist.

Trophy15John Savage (pictured top right) born 12.04.1929, was a Club member who died over 20 years ago. A man of action with great ability, high ethical and moral standards - his Scouting career was unique! - Scout Master; Group Scout Leader and latterly President of his own Group. John resigned as Director (having followed an engineering career) in Craig's in 1972 to follow a career that he much loved, in Scouting - an extension of his lifetime hobby. With many awards for his Community Service he was Field Commissioner 1972 - 74 and Executive Commissioner 1974 until his death. He brought three Scout Associations in Ireland together. 'A man behind everything' he was appointed J.P. for his work in Juvenile courts; was a member of SELB from 1985; Chairman NI Standing Conference of Youth Organisations; member of the Board of Governors, Special School for Handicapped children, Newtownards; and a member of the Programme of Training Sub Committee (London H.Q.). On joining the Rotary Club of Belfast, John quickly entered into the Work and Service under the Aims & Objects of Rotary. Possibly, one of his greatest contributions in Rotary and Scouting was his re-establishing the Rotary Boys' Camp, at Crawfordsburn Scout Centre 1977, with Pat Smyrl and Denise O'Neill, Scouts and Ranger Guides. He nurtured the disadvantaged children attending the Camps, as they enjoyed the experience of sleeping under canvas with a simple Scout programme, and he made a lasting difference to many lives.

Previous Awards

  • JohnSavageAward to BAC3The John Savage Memorial Trophy 2016-17 was awarded to the Belfast Activity Centre who have over 25 years experience of challenging and inspiring young people and those young at heart, to realise their full potential.

    It was presented by President Ivan to CEO Stephen Dickson and Chairman Tom Scott OBE at the Club meeting Monday 27 February 2017.  BAC anually supports over 20,000 young people to expand their personal and social development through outdoor adventure learning. More here.

  • KatrinaPresRonnieGeraldineAnneWithTrophyandChequeThe John Savage Memorial Trophy 2015-16 was awarded to New Lodge Arts Group

    It was accepted at the Meeting on Monday 15 February by Katrina Newell, Head of Arts and Youth Development along with Geraldine Wilkins, Chair of the Board, and Anne Delaney, Arts Programme and Operations Manager who expressed their thanks. They are a community arts organisation based in the Greater New Lodge area of North Belfast which provides opportunities for people of all ages to actively engage with and participate in a wide range of art forms that they would not otherwise be exposed to - more here...
  • JimNicholsonAcceptsAward15The 2014-15 Trophy was awarded to YouthActionNI.

    It was accepted by Deputy Chairman Jim Nicholson at the meeting 19 January 2015 who in turn thanked the Club. More information on YouthAction NI and the Club's support for it can be seen here.
  • 2011-12 JS AwardThe 2011-12 Trophy was awarded to SOS Bus NI.

    It was accepted by SOSBus NI CEO Joe Hyland at the meeting 28 October 2013.

    More information on SOS Bus NI and the Club's support for it can be seen here.


  • 2010-11 JS AwardThe John A Savage Trophy for 2010-11 was presented on 21st February 2011 to the Belfast Rotaract Club.

    The award was collected, on behalf of the Rotaract Club by President Tom Eisenhart and founder member Laura Garland. Presenting the award, President Brian Clements stated he was personally delighted to present this award given his long-standing association with John Savage and the connection with the Rotaract Club.

    Information on the Belfast Rotaract Club can be seen here.
  • 2009 JS AwardThe first recipients of the Trophy were the Harmony Hill Presbyterian Church Youth Group for their work on the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme and commitment to young people. The Trophy was presented on 23rd November 2009 by President Arthur Boyd to Heather Best, Harmony Hill Open Centre and, by chance, two of PP Alan White's grandchildren - Peter and Sarah White were on the winning team! click image to enlarge

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