Tributes have been paid to an triathlete and a former Bolton head teacher who died suddenly on Satuday.

Ray McGloin was the founder Tri-Rivington and was head of St John the Evangelist RC School in Bromley Cross.

Ray has been described as 'unique, an inspiration and legendary' by the many who knew him.

Ray has competed in seven Ironman events, twenty half Ironman events, over fifty Olympic and sprint distance events. He has also competed in countless 10km, half and full marathons, as well as ultra-distance swimming, running and cycling events.

Ray started Tri-Rivington with a vision. His words remain on the club’s website, where he said: “I wanted to create a triathlon club where everyone feels they can be the best they want to become, with quality coaching and a place where everyone supports one another.”

Club coaches at Tri-Rivington, Dean Ramsden and Steve Haslam, have released a joint statement. They said: “Tri-Rivington are devastated at the sudden loss of our Head Coach Ray McGloin aged 64. To us he was far more than just a coach he was a mentor, a leader, a supporter, a gentleman and most of all a true friend.

“His vision was to create a club ‘where everyone feels they can be the best they want to become, and a place where everyone supports one another’, and this is exactly what Tri-Rivington is.

“He has been an inspiration and a life changer for so many of us, helping us to achieve things we never thought possible.

“He was genuinely interested and cared about each and every one of our members and was completely selfless.

“He loved his club and was immensely proud of it and all of our achievements.

“He was a true family man and always taught us ‘family first’.

“His loss will be felt throughout the triathlon and sporting community, such was his popularity. He knew everyone and was known to everyone.

“We will miss him immensely, but Tri-Rivington will go on. The club will continue because it is what he would’ve wanted.

“We owe it to him to continue to support each other, keep moving forward, pushing ourselves and his club to be the best we can. Tri-Rivington are not lost we are discovering new routes.”

Emma Sneddon, member of Tri-Rivington, says that Ray coached her from being unable to ride a bike, to completing an Ironman event.

The Bolton News: Ray McGloin and Emma SneddonRay McGloin and Emma Sneddon

She said: “Ray was someone who was always there for everyone.

“When as a total novice I stopped him - I was a stranger to him - in the gym and asked him if he could help me train for an Ironman he didn’t hesitate to say of course and reassure me that I could do it. I couldn’t even ride a bike.

“And thanks to him, his patient training and masses of knowledge, and Tri-Rivington I did it, too.

“Mr Reassuring, he was always there everyone, whoever you were, to encourage and support you.

“I will always remember him with a smile.

“It’s Bolton’s loss and the triathlon community lost a hero.”

Another person who Ray coached, Sean Toole, said: "Ray was an inspirational coach who made a difference to many people’s lives.

"He wore his considerable knowledge lightly and created a supportive and positive group in Tri-Rivington.

"I have no doubt that for many years from now that every day at least one runner, cyclist or swimmer will think of Ray with a smile on their face whilst out exercising.

"A true legend of sport in Bolton, it was a pleasure to have him as a coach and a friend."

In the wake of his death, members of Tri-Rivington came out in force to pay their respects to Mr McGloin. Hundreds of people went for a walk in his honour to Rivington Pike on Bank Holiday Monday.

Head teacher of St John the Evangelist, Lesley Jackson  has also paid her respects on behalf of the school.

She said: “Our St  John’s family are saddened to hear about the sudden passing of Ray McGloin, a former headteacher at St. John’s.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

Several members of Tri-Rivington are currently cycling from Lands' End to John O Groats. Mr Ramsden and Mr Haslam has to break the news to them whilst doing their challenge.

"Despite their sadness they have continued because it’s what Ray would’ve wanted and expected," they said.

Many other sports clubs have posted tributes on social media including representatives from Rochdale Triathlon Club, Horwich RMI Harriers and Athletics Club, The Wikiwiki Tri Team, and The Endurance Shop.

Ray leaves behind a wife and four sons.


If you have would like to leave a tribute to Ray, please email me at or DM me on Twitter @lewisfinney18