Tag Archives: 1959

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.

Eastfields Road

Road that continues eastward from Locks Lane to the level crossing at Mitcham Eastfields station. All properties currently have the postcode CR4 2LS.

On this 1953 OS map, houses, that are only on the north side of the road, are numbered eastward as odd from 13 to 91. As described from west to east:

a terrace of 4 houses, numbers 13 to 19;
a separate building numbered 21 which had been used as a shop with accommodation, see below;
footpath to Sandy Lane (now Public Right of Way 147);
a row of 6 houses numbered 27 to 37;
number 39 was demolished due to bomb damage in WW2;
a gap which is now Roper Way;
a terrace of 5 houses numbered 49 to 57;
a terrace of 3 houses numbered 59 to 63;
a terrace of 3 houses numbered 67 to 73;
then Rialto Road;
a terrace of 4 houses divided into 2 flats each, numbered 75 to 91.

1953 OS map

This earlier OS map from 1894 shows that the road was part of Tamworth Lane, separated from the rest of it by the railway that was constructed in 1868.

1894 OS map

The 1914 electoral register lists the following occupants in Eastfields Road:

Martin’s Cottage, Edward ROGERS
Primrose Cottage, Richard TOOGOOD
Bird’s Cottage, James McATTEER
10 Rosemary Villas, Charles WILSON
9 Rosemary Villas, John GODDEN
7 Rosemary Villas, George Wheldon HEPWORTH
6 Rosemary Villas, Henry WOODS
4 Rosemary Villas, John Frederick WADE
1 Rosemary Villas, William Valentine BENSTEAD

George TURNER is listed as Eastfields Road only

The 1925 street directory lists properties from Lock’s Lane:

Richard C. TOOGOOD, shopkeeper

Rosemary Villas
10, George Wheldon HEPWORTH
9, Samuel AULD
8, James SULLIVAN
7, Mrs WILSON
6, Mrs WOODS
5, Albert Edward MEPHAM
4, Percy Charles RIGGS
3, Andrew DUNNING
2, Henry WOODS, pig dealer
1, William V BENSTEAD

Kirby Cottage, Charles DAVISON, stock breeder

George Wheldon HEPWORTH had married Elizabeth Amelia WOODS, daughter of Henry WOODS, in 1911. The Henry Woods at no. 2 in the 1925 directory was his son, as Henry Woods senior died in 1922.

Elizabeth Hepworth nee Woods. Photo kindly provided by a descendant of the family.

Woods family gathering, believed to be in Rosemary Villas. Photo kindly provided by a descendant of the family.

The road was renumbered in 1929/30 as the 1929 electoral register shows these named houses, but the 1930 register and onwards show them as numbered.

This table shows the number or name of the house in 1929, then the number in 1930 and the surname of the occupants in 1930.

1929 1930 Occupants
1 13 MILLER
2 15 PENEGAR
3 17 EDWARDS
4 19 SCOTT
Stables Stables GUYATT
Primrose Cottage 21 TOOGOOD, STEWART
10 Rosemary Villas 33 HEPWORTH
9 Rosemary Villas 35 AULT
8 Rosemary Villas 37 SULLIVAN
7 Rosemary Villas 39 EXCELL
6 Rosemary Villas 47 WOODS
5 Rosemary Villas 49 MEPHAM
4 Rosemary Villas 51 RIGGS
3 Rosemary Villas 53 DUNNING
2 Rosemary Villas 55 WOODS
1 Rosemary Villas 57 BENSTEAD
Kirby Cottage 65 DAVISON

1934 OS map

Eastfields Corner

These houses, numbers 13, 15, 17 and 19, were owned by Renshaw, the marzipan factory in Locks Lane and initially rented out to staff. It was known as “Eastfields Corner”.

No. 21

The shop at no. 21 used by John Jayson after WW2. He had originally a grocers shop at 2 Fernlea Road which had been bombed in the war. A fellow on the Facebook group Mitcham History said that there was a wood yard at the back where, as a child, he would take cardboard for it to be weighed and exchanged for a few pennies.

At number 21 was Rogers Estate Agents, at least between 1959 and 1973. Listed in the 1973 Mitcham Chamber of Commerce booklet with telephone number 648 8527, and shown in this 1959 ad:

20th February 1959 ad in Norwood News

In March 1954 planning permission was given for 40 lock-up garages to be built at the rear and side.

This property was in use as an estate agents up to 2002, after which it was empty and was bought by Merton Council with a Compulsory Purchase Order on 17th December 2009. It was redeveloped in 2014 as flats, as described in planning application 13/P1383:

Demolition of the existing two-bedroom property at 21 Eastfields Road and the adjacent 40 domestic garages and construction of a new three-storey building providing 21 flats [9 three bedroom flats and 12 one bedroom flats] with 14 off street car parking spaces with vehicular access on to Eastfields Road, landscaping and a freestanding building providing cycle and bin storage.

The flats are numbered sequentially from 1 to 21, with the address of 21 Eastfields Road.

39

This house was added to the row of 6 houses numbered 27 to 37 in around 2009/10, as described in planning application 09/P0193:

Erection of a part one, part two storey end of terrace 2 bedroom dwelling house

The original number 39 had been damaged in WW2, and the rebuilt house reproduced the frontage in keeping with the rest of the terrace:

Front elevation of no. 37 and 39 from planning application

71

At number 71 was W. Steptowe & Sons, boot and shoe repairers.


News Articles and Ads
The newspaper articles below are via the British Newspaper Archive

From The Evening Herald (Dublin) Saturday 30th August 1930

A few minutes after Mr and Mrs Albert EXCELL and their five-year-old son, Johnny, of Eastfields Road, Mitcham, had left their bedroom at 2 a.m. the house was struck by lightning and plaster fell in large sheets from the ceiling on to the bed.

Newsagents T.G. COOPER, 96, Eastfield Road, stocked ‘Action’, a newspaper of the British Union of Fascists, according to this ad of 23rd July 1938:

23rd July 1938 ad in Action


Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.