History of the AJA

This page is dedicated to the history of the AJA.

As our records are somewhat incomplete anybody who has information about past AJA members, officers, events, etc, is more than welcome to email it to: amateurjudoassociation@gmail.com

The Amateur Judo Association was founded in 1955 by Harry Ewen (below left) and Pat Butler (below right).

Harry Ewen was A.J.A. chairman from 1956 until he was unfortunately killed in a car accident at the age of 43. He founded Leicester Judo club in 1948 and wrote 2 books ‘ Modern Judo and Self Defence’ and ‘Your Book of Judo’. Pat Butler was general secretary from 1956 until Saturday October 14th 1972. During his time the A.J.A. grew from 3 clubs and 150 members to 741 clubs and 40,000 members. Pat Butler later became the President of the B.S.J.A. By 1967 he had written ‘Self Defence Complete,’ ‘Judo Complete,’ Popular Judo,’ ‘Judo for Juniors,’ and ‘Advanced Judo and Self Defence’.

This page lists some of the previous officers of the AJA. Unfortunately it is not complete list and we would therefore ask if anyone has information regarding other previous officers please get in touch.



Keith Kendall 2017 to Present

Roger Downs 1997 to 2017

Colin Morley 1991 to 1997

James W  Dickie 1969 to 1991

Norman Grundy   19 - 1969

General Secretary

Philip Smith 1999 to present

Les Nicholass 1997 to 1999

Philip Smith 1988 to 1997

Dave Greenhall 1983 to 1988

Reg Menereau 19- to 1983

National Coach

Leslie Farnell 2017 to Present

Roger Downs 1993 to 2017

Danny Cassidy 1981 to 1993

Mr O'Donnell 1979 to 1980

Norman Grundy 1966 - Early 70's


Robert Bates 1990 to present

Cindy Newman 1981 to 1990

Mrs O'Donnell 19 - to 1981

National Recorder

John Stubbington 2000 to present

Wendy Wass 1999 to 2000

Les Nicholass 1990 to 1999

John Kirkland 1987 to 1990

Pat Rowley 19- to 1987