Eddie Norman – Darts tribute night
Eddie Norman – The God Father of modern darts was surprised with a huge tribute night in the Aztec Hotel in Bristol on Friday the 11th September, that was attended by hundreds of darts legends including Bob Anderson his wife, The Dudbridge family, The Mason family and everyone who had ever played for the West of England since 1970 with some ex-players travelling from as a far away as Devon, Wales, Yorkshire and Spain.
Eddie Norman has been around darts since the Tungsten Revolution of the 70’s, where for no other reason than enjoying the odd chuck he ended up organising a darts night with his local team and never looked back.
Eddie has never sought nor taken any of the accolades owed to him for the momentum he injected into the modern game of darts, whilst talk of darts centre’s on Barry Hearn and Oly Croft it was a young ambitious Eddie Norman who was light years ahead setting up exhibitions with legends of the game Alan Evans and Leighton Rees that moved on to full blown International matches on the heath at Bristol attracting fans in the thousands.
It was Eddie’s success in organised darts that drew attention to his work, where he served as a Senior BDO official for several years, but the BDO’s stiff set up was too restricting for the free spirited Eddie who’s passion for top darts on show for darts fans had too much political wrangling and so he set his sights on the darts business and promotion overseas.
Eddie set up the House of Darts Wholesale trading company with his brother Pete, and soon they had a thriving business that saw them filling a gap in the market by Exporting over 75% of their Darts products, and it was this huge success that saw them win the Queens Award for Export and a summons to meet the Queen herself.
The House of Darts business method was unique and based on Eddie’s passion for the game and his devotion in spreading the word, Eddie’s business would see him travel to the 4 corners of the world and make him directly responsible for the growth of darts in places normal folk could only dream of like Barbados, Kiribati, Iran, Fiji, Samoa and his wife’s native Australia.
Eddie would travel to these places and inspire local darts people who had little more than a board on the wall and show them how to arrange competitions, supply locals with darts and develop the game. Eddie would then act as a back up support for many years after as he watched darts grow in over 60 countries.
Naturally The House of Darts business made him an ideal partner for every Dart Company that lacked Eddie’s unique gift of growing darts in far out places, and he had direct supply lines in to every major dart company in the World with a quiet boast that there was nothing the House of Darts could not source.
After 35 years in the darts business Eddie and Pete left the day to day running of The House of Darts, but Eddie’s passion for darts never left him and too this day he still travels abroad as a business advisor for top high street banks, where his downright passion for game has never left him as he still promotes the games growth everywhere he passes through, his last trip took in Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and Fiji.
Clearly there is too much too write about this amazing gentleman of darts, and had he actually had any darts talent with his passion he’d have been up there with Phil Taylor!!
Eddie who had no idea about the tribute evening said "We went into the private room at the back, my Grand Daughter opened the door and 50 cameras went off, I had walked into a surprise party, rather like a This is your Life, with every darts player I had ever known there, I nearly passed out- It was a tribute evening to me!
I was tearful when people come up to thank me for giving them so much pleasure over the years in darts - a real tribute evening.
It really does make one feel humble and for once I was totally lost for words when they gave me a microphone".
Having known Eddie for nearly 10 years I can testify to what an amazingly kind and special human being he is, to whom all of us in darts owe some debt of gratitude.