A long line of Claret champs

A rare slice of Burnley FC memoribilia this week with a card presented by the long defunct “Pluck” magazine depicting the Burnley team of 1921-22.

Many of these Claret stars played in the Football League runners-up team of 191 -20, were Football League champions of 1920-21 and the held the legendary record of 30 consecutive games without defeat during that championship season.

Seen here in the famous strip of the 1920s are England internationals Jerry Dawson, William Watson, Eddie Mosscrop, Bob Kelly, all great names of almost a century ago. Between the four of these Clarets of the past were a total of 21 England caps, albeit in the days of England games only numbering around three or four a year.

Jerry Dawson, the Burnley and England goalkeeper, was born in Holme in Cliviger on Sunday, March 18th, 1888, his football career beginning at Holme FC in the Edwardian era.

Back in 1962 I was working as an office clerk at Threlfall’s wine and spirit merchants at 71 Market Street in Colne. One sunny summer’s day I was stocktaking at the Union Hotel (owned by Threlfalls) and the landlord at that time was the renowned former Burnley footballer Arthur Woodruff. Arthur spent 16 years at Turf Moor, winning promotion in the 1946-47 side and playing in the 1947 FA Cup Final. I always enjoyed Arthur’s stocktake, as he recalled his many epic games for Burnley playing against Ted Drake, Tommy Lawton and Stanley Matthews.

As I tallied up the Tio-Pepe sherry bottles and the juke-box played the number one chart hit “Good Luck Charm” by Elvis Presley, Arthur with a smile came over and said: “Here’s someone you should meet Geoff, over 40 years ago he was an England goalie”.

I shake the tall, spry old man’s warm hand. It was none other than the celebrated Terry Dawson.