TKU. Officials. Profiles. Gallery (1). Gallery (2). Nostalgia. In Remembrance.



Jed Pollard - Head Coach.

Jed first started training in 1975 at a local Shotokan club, which was affiliated to the KUGB. The club instructor at that time was Pete Dent, and later other instructors followed.

In 1980, Jed transferred to the Yorkshire Karate Association (YKA) and attended their squad training programme. In the same year Jed graded to 1st Kyu, under Sensei Ray Fuller (Thames Karate).

In 1981, Jed was a semi finalist in the YKA National Championships Individual kumite and a quarter finalist in the Thames Karate National Championships Individual Kumite.

In 1982, to further supplement his training, Jed affiliated with the International Budo Association (IBA) and trained under Sensei’s Phil Milner and Arnie Beswick, both of who have now sadly passed away. Whilst with the IBA Jed passed his 1st and 2nd Dan's in 1982 and 1988 respectively and made the IBA national squad.

Jed was a team kumite winner with Worksop ‘A’ in the 1982 IBA National Championships and runner up in the Individual Kumite in the same championships.

In 1988, Jed opened his own club near Worksop, which grew to a handful of clubs in his local area.

In 1989, he affiliated these clubs to Federation of Karate Organisations (FEKO) under the heading of the Traditional Karate Union.

During this time, Jed forged a strong association with the European Karate Association, whose Chief Instructor was Ken Hillyard, who sadly passed away in 2018.

Jed was also trained regularly at Skegness Shotokan run by his old friend from the YKA days, Sensei Mike Baxendale, who died in tragic circumstances in 2000.

In 1991, Jed was awarded the level one coaching award by the Martial Arts Commission, and 1992, Jed received his 3rd Dan under Sensei Ray Wilson, then an assessor representing FEKO.

In 1994, Jed was made an Accredited NVQ Assessor for Focus Sports to assess coaching karate to national standards.

In 1996, Jed was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of the Forget Me Not Cancer Appeal from the Royal University Hospital, Liverpool, due to helping raise money for the appeal through his karate. Also, in 1996, he passed his 4th Dan.

In the same year, Jed also coached the Egyptian Junior National Squad in Cairo.

In 2001, Jed passed his 5th Dan and was awarded a Diploma of Martial Arts Coaching by the European Karate Association.

In 2009, Jed was awarded his 6th Dan and ten years later in 2019, he was awarded 7th Dan by the Traditional Karate Union, under the blessing of the Federation of English Karate Organisations.


Dave Bilson - Assessor and Grading Examiner.

Dave's first interest in martial arts began at the age 19 in 1961, when he started practicing Judo at the Georgian Judo Club in Sheffield, attaining the grade of 3rd kyu in 1965.

In 1995 at the age of 53 took he took his 10yr old son to train in Shotokan Karate under Sensei Steve Baxter in Dinington and Laughton. After watching a few sessions Sensei Baxter persuaded Dave to join the club.

Dave trained under Sensei’s Steve Baxter and Jed Pollard until reaching his1st kyu in 1999 when he attended black belt training sessions in Nottingham, under Shihan Ken Hillyard (European Karate Association), passing his 1st Dan in 2001, aged 59 years.

Later, whilst still training with the TKU and the EKA, Dave passed further dan gradings awarded by Shihan Hillyard in 2004 (2nd Dan), 2007 (3rd Dan) and 2011 (4th Dan).

In 2019 aged 76, Dave was awarded his 5th Dan by Sensei Jed Pollard which was endorsed by the Late Sensei Ken Hillyard.

All Dave's grades are certified by the TKU, EKA and FEKO.

During this time Dave took over the management and training at Laughton Shotokan Karate Club from Sensei Steve Baxter and with the help and kept the club running until COVID caused the club closure in 2022. 

Dave now holds the title of assessor and grading examiner.