Margate FC and Baypoint football clubs have announced the sad news that player Michael Britt has passed away.
Michael, who would have been 21 tomorrow, played for Margate FC from the age of six until U16’s and returned this season for the U23’s team.
A statement from Margate FC says: “It is with deep sorrow that we announce the passing of our beloved player, Michael Britt.
“He dedicated his youth to Margate, playing from the age of six until U16’s, when health challenges forced him to step away. Returning this season to our Margate U23’s, he became an indispensable part of the team.
“We mourn the loss of this kind, talented soul and extend our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time.”
Margate Chairman Ricky Owen added; “This is terribly sad news and one that has hit us at the very core of this football Club. Michael dedicated his life to playing for Margate Football Club and all our thoughts are with his family and friends at this very difficult time.”
It has been agreed that tonight’s [December 1] U23’s fixture at home to Staplehurst Monarchs will go ahead in Michael’s memory and will be free for all supporters.
Players and supporters will observe a minute of silence in memory of Michael, who the club say was “a diligent and compassionate young man taken from us too soon” and “a shining light and a great character.”
Baypoint Football Club has also expressed sadness at the loss of Michael, describing him as a “friend, talented young football player and Captain of the club’s men’s team.”
Baypoint Club said: “Michael passed away suddenly last night. He has been part of the Baypoint Football Club for the past two seasons, and he is also captain of Margate U23’s.
“Michael was a born leader and a genuine good guy, he will be missed greatly by everyone involved with Baypoint and Baypoint FC.
“Our hearts go out to his family, friends, and teammates at this difficult time.
“To honour his memory and show our support and respect, there will be a minute silence before all Baypoint games this weekend.”
Leon Friend, managing director at Baypoint Sports, said: “Michael was the first captain of our men’s team. He was the heart and soul of the team, our club, and our community at Baypoint.
“He tied the team together and if you had to write what qualities a captain of a team needed, Michael had them all and more. He led by example, put his team-mates first, was inspirational, positive, caring, determined and was our Captain.
“As a community we are devastated. Tomorrow would have been his 21st birthday. We are retiring the number two shirt from the first team, it will hang proudly at Baypoint.
“Britt (his nickname) is one of the nicest, kindest, and loveable lads we have had the pleasure of knowing. Taken away far too soon and young. You will be missed by so many people. What a lad and what a skipper.
“Margate FC has invited the Baypoint FC first team to join them in their minutes silence before tonight’s match.
“They have kindly extended the invitation to the Baypoint Community to attend tonight’s match to pay tribute to a true gentleman who was captain of both Teams.
“Rest in peace Michael, Bigman, Captain, Britt, Skip.”
His manager Lee and his teammates added: “Michael was a true one of a kind. A lad who had nothing but a heart of gold and never knew the difference between BBQ sauce and brown sauce.
“Michael always had a cheeky smile on his face and was always someone that cared so much for those around him.
“We haven’t lost a player, we have all lost a real friend who we love dearly. Forever our skipper and always with us. Rest Easy, Skip.”