Category Archives: Sport

Tribute to Kenny Holder

Kenny Holder was born on 28th January 1939 in Battersea. He died on 6th January 2021.

Photo from the Tooting & Mitcham United FC 1966-1967 handbook

His pre-school years were spent during the difficult time of WW2 but by the 1950s Kenny’s parents had moved to St Mark’s Road in Mitcham.

The young Kenny soon showed his promise as a footballer and joined the Elderwood Boys Club, which was a junior club that fed into Tooting & Mitcham United.

The 3rd May 1956 saw Kenny playing at Sandy Lane for Elderwood against Ditton Old Boys in the North Surrey Minor League Cup Final.

The following year, with Kenny now 18 years old, he was back at Sandy Lane with Elderwood, this time for the final of the Surrey County Youth Cup against Westfield Boys on 11th May 1957.

Programme dated 11th May 1957

Although now 18 Kenny did not make his Tooting First Team debut until 1960 due to having to serve compulsory National Service for two years.

Once in Tooting’s first eleven Kenny played around 500 times scoring an impressive fifty odd goals in the process.

He only missed two games during the 1960-1961 season, after his first outing, but was ever present for the next two.

After missing very few games over the next couple of campaigns Kenny was ever present again for the 1965-1966 season. To be ever present in a total of three seasons was an incredible feat in itself but the dedicated club servant was not finished and remarkably he was again ever present during seasons 1966-1967 and 1967-1968 as well.

That hat trick of three consecutive unbroken appearances meant Kenny Holder played a total of five full season during the ten that he took part in which is quite incredible.

In the summer of 1970 Kenny was one of the players who signed for Croydon’s new manager, South London bookmaker Jimmy Rose.

Known then as Croydon Amateurs, this was a step up for the manager, who was successfully running his Sunday side, called Jimmy Rose FC.

Kenny is on the right with a few of his Croydon teammates.

However Rose won two promotions with Holder in his team, but when he left to manage Dulwich Hamlet, age was against Kenny following him to Champion Hill.
Now in his mid-thirties, he remained at the Croydon Sports Arena where he eventually retired from senior football after playing a couple of games during the 1973-1974 season.

Kenny still played Sunday football well into his forties and many a player, whether teammate or opponent, have fond memories of the ageing talent running games from midfield, letting the younger players in his team doing all the running.

However it was at Tooting & Mitcham where Kenny played his best football, gaining London FA and Surrey FA caps and representing the Isthmian League. An England Amateur cap eluded Kenny but he was once invited by The FA to train with the squad but he declined due to the session clashing with a Tooting game. The FA unfortunately took this as a snub and Kenny was never invited again.
The Middlesex Wanderers were happy to have Kenny on board and he represented them on 23rd November 1965 when the touring side played Hendon at Claremont Road.

Kenny’s First Team debut came on 5th November 1960 at Leytonstone when he lined up in a star studded team that included Paddy Hasty and Dario Gradi.
The previous week he had played at Oxford City for the reserves in a game that saw Alex Stepney brought into the Second Eleven.

It should also be mentioned that Kenny once took Alex Stepney’s place in the Tooting goal. Alex Stepney went on the play for Manchester United and is still one of their top ten record appearance holders. But during the away game at Kingstonian’s Richmond Road on 24th November 1962 Alex got injured, breaking his wrist. Kenny went in goal and as there were no substitutes in those days, Alex Stepney played the remainder of the match on the wing.

Surrey Invitation Cup Semi-Final on 24th March 1962.

The above photo shows Kenny looking on as Alex Stepney, catches the ball in another away fixture in Kingston. The teammate between them is Gordon Holden who by no stretch of anybody’s imagination looks like Kenny Holder.

Being on National Service with Northern Command in 1959, Kenny decided to throw a sickie in January of that year so he could come home and, along with over 16,000 others, watch Tooting’s FA Cup 3rd Round game with Nottingham Forest.
The game had caught the imagination of the country’s football followers and was filmed by Pathe News.

The Northern Command C/O happened to see the highlights and when he heard the very excitable commentator say the name Holden he then saw left fullback George Edwards and convinced himself that this was Kenny Holder.

The military Police were sent to St Mark’s Road where Kenny was staying with his Mum and Dad and a few red faces must have ensued. Yes, Kenny had thrown a sickie, but to watch the match not to play in it.

Tooting & Mitcham 1932-1933 Fixtures & Results

27th August 1932 Tooting & Mitcham 9
Shepherds Bush 1
London
League
3rd
September 1932
Finchley 2 Tooting & Mitcham 0 London League
7th
September 1932
Carshalton Athletic 5 Tooting & Mitcham 3 London League Cup
10th
September 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 1 Sutton United 3 Surrey Senior Charity
Shield
17th
September 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 3 PO Engineers 3 Preliminary Round FA Cup
21st
September 1932
PO Engineers 5 Tooting & Mitcham 1 @ Sandy Lane replay FA Cup
24th
September 1932
Cray Wanderers 1 Tooting & Mitcham 3 London League
1st
October 1932
Chelmsford 6 Tooting & Mitcham 1 London League
8th
October 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 1 Metropolitan Police 4 1st Qualifying Round
Amateur Cup
15th
October 1932
Carshalton Athletic 2 Tooting & Mitcham 3 semi-final Wilson
Hospital Cup
22nd
October 1932
Grays Athletic 0 Tooting & Mitcham 4 London League
29th
October 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 2 Tilbury 2 London League
5th
November 1932
Shepherds Bush 2 Tooting & Mitcham 2 London League
12th
November 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 4 Dagenham Town 1 London League
19th
November 1932
Park Royal 3 Tooting & Mitcham 1 London League
26th
November 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 0 Park Royal 2 London League
17th
December 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 4 Cray Wanderers 1 London League
26th
December 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 4 Carshalton Athletic 0 London League
27th
December 1932
Colchester Town 1 Tooting & Mitcham 3 Friendly
31st
December 1932
Tooting & Mitcham 5 Bostall Heath 1 London League
7th
January 1933
Tooting & Mitcham A Hendon A after 87 minutes 6-2 London League
14th
January 1933
Camberley & Yorktown 3 Tooting & Mitcham 0 Friendly
21st
January 1933
Epsom Town 1 Tooting & Mitcham 2 1st Round Surrey Cup
28th
January 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 4 Chelmsford 3 London League
4th
February 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 3 Beckenham 2 London League
11th
February 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 0 Queens Park Rangers Reserves 3 Friendly
18th
February 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 1 Dulwich Hamlet 2   A.E.T. 2nd Round Surrey Cup
25th
February 1933
Hendon A Tooting & Mitcham A after 55 minutes 4-1 London League
4th
March 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 3 Beddington Corner 2 Friendly
11th
March 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 4 Hendon 0 London League
18th
March 1933
Beckenham 1 Tooting & Mitcham 3 London League
25th
March 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 3 Grays Athletic 1 London League
1st
April 1933
Tilbury 1 Tooting & Mitcham 1 London League
8th
April 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 3 Beddington Corner 2 FINAL Wilson Hospital Cup
12th
April 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 0 Finchley 1 London League
14th
April 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 0 Epsom Town 4 London League
15th
April 1933
Carshalton Athletic 4 Tooting & Mitcham 1 London League
17th
April 1933
Epsom Town 3 Tooting & Mitcham 0 London League
26th
April 1933
Bostall Heath 2 Tooting & Mitcham 0 London League
1st
May 1933
Hendon 0 Tooting & Mitcham 2 London League
6th
May 1933
Dagenham Town 4 Tooting & Mitcham 1 London League
13th
May 1933
Tooting & Mitcham 3 Bostall Heath 2 Tooting & District
Invitation Cup

London League Premier Division

HOME AWAY TEAM P W D L F A PTS
0-2 1-3 Park Royal 26 20 3 3 72 31 43
0-4 0-3 Epsom Town 26 16 7 3 92 45 39
0-1 0-2 Finchley 26 16 2 8 67 37 34
4-3 1-6 Chelmsford 26 14 5 7 88 59 33
X-X X-X Tooting & Mitcham 26 13 3 10 61 48 29
5-1 0-2 Bostall Heath 26 12 5 9 52 59 29
4-1 1-4 Dagenham Town 26 11 5 10 62 59 27
4-0 1-4 Carshalton Athletic 26 10 4 12 52 64 24
4-1 3-1 Cray Wanderers 26 9 5 12 54 58 23
4-0 2-0 Hendon * 26 10 1 15 50 61 21
2-2 1-1 Tilbury 26 7 7 12 44 59 21
3-1 4-0 Grays Athletic 26 6 5 15 45 60 17
9-1 2-2 Shepherds Bush 26 5 2 19 50 99 12
3-2 3-1 Beckenham 26 4 4 18 34 84 12

* Not connected in any way to Hendon FC who today play at Kingsbury Park. This Hendon FC were formally known as Hendon Town FC but dropped “Town” from their name in 1931, after being elevated to the London League Premier Division.