On Saturday 14th January, John Tildesley and David Hambling were formally awarded the rank of 1st Degree Blackbelt!
The presentation was lead by Guru B.S. Dhaliwal and the Master Grades in front of a packed audience of family, friends and colleagues. It was surely a night John and David will remember for the rest of their lives.
In the past 55 years since Mr Dhaliwal started teaching the Art Form, over 75,000 students have come through our doors, but only 190 people have ever reached this coveted rank, that is less than 0.3%!
Ustads Nigel Law and Matt Kendrick were given the honour of removing the old senior brown belts from David and John respectively. Nigel and Matt were the main instructors of these gentleman and taught, guided and mentored them over many years.
The new blackbelts were then ceremoniously tied around their waists by Master Michael Newton before they were asked to sign the official blackbelt register and handed special personalised gifts, with thanks to Patsy Gibbs who produced the beautiful artwork.
After the formal presentation, John and David along with a few of their new blackbelt colleagues, performed a beautiful and elegant demo to a rapturous audience.
The evening’s celebrations continued with partying and socialising late into the night – the event was the first Association party in 3 years which made it extra special!
The final announcement of the night was for the presentation of the Blackbelt Instructor of the Year award – which this year was presented to Ustad John Hall for his commitment to his training, teaching and support to the Association – well done John, very well deserved!
Please join us once more in congratulating Ustads John Tildesley, David Hambling and John Hall – a magnificent way to start the year gentleman!
Enjoy some of the wonderful photos from this event, with thanks to JAKT Photography.