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Club History

The Campbell River Judo Club was founded by Mr. James Ramsay in 1966.

Mr. Ramsay came to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada from Glasgow, Scotland. There he was a boxer and part of the self-defense team for the Glasgow Police. By 1956 Mr. Ramsay had moved to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. There he became part of the Victoria Police Force. It was here, in the Victoria area, where Mr. Ramsay met Yeiji Inouye who was a 2nd degree black belt. Yeiji worked at the Naval Base in Esquimalt, British Columbia. He taught Mr. Ramsay the art and the sport of Judo. Mr. Ramsay fought in a lot of tournaments and it took him only three years to get his black belt.

Yeiji Innouye started the Victoria Judo Club in 1957. It was the second registered club on Vancouver Island (the first was in Nanaimo).  Their first space was a a very small shop with it’s only heat source with a coal keeper. When the club began to grow they rented space at a local synagogue while also teaching Judo sessions at the Victoria YMCA. Mr. Ramsay was a sensei at both the synagogue and the YMCA.

In 1966 Neilson Cook came to Victoria to ask Mr. Ramsay if he would consider coming to Campbell River, British Columbia and starting a Judo club there. Mr. Ramsay went to visit Campbell River and fell in love with it’s beauty. He was also eager to get away from the shift work with the Victoria Police Force. Campbell River was then a small town of 21,000. Mr. Ramsay told Neilson Cook that yes, he would start a dojo in Campbell River. He left the Victoria Police Force and got a job at the Campbell River Mill. Mr. Ramsay moved to Campbell River and in 1966 founded the Campbell River Judo Club.

In 2011 James Ramsay received his 6th degree black belt. In 2011 he also saw his dream of an expanded dojo come to fruition. The Campbell River Judo Club now has the largest dojo on Vancouver Island.

(Right) Darcy Yule ; Yondan; Head Instructor  (Left) James Ramsay ; Rokudan ; club “SHU” Founder

James Ramsey receives his 6th degree black belt

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