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Carr, the sportsman

Football (= soccer, to Americans)

Carr played football from his childhood in Sherburn-in-Elmet, as his inscription in Steeple Sinderby shows. His diary for 1925 indicated that he played for his primary school. He then played for teams at Castleford Secondary School, and a photograph of him in footbal kit dated 1927-29 indicates that he was a left half, now usually called left midfield.

Carr's experiences playing football in the season of 1930-31 for South Milford White Rose are captured in Steeple Sinderby.


Carr played cricket for much of his life. He played for Curdridge Cricket Club near Southampton during his first job as a teacher and recorded how, as a relatively new player, was asked to be vice-captain of the second eleven and take over the captaincy when the captain was called away. He played for Aston Unity Cricket Club in Birmingham before the war, and then joined Birmingham Municipal Cricket Club (now defunct) after the war, which is recorded in the Midlands Club Cricket Conference Year Books. When he moved to Kettering in 1951 he then played for Kettering Town Cricket Club until the 1960s, when he was in his 50's.


Carr wrote a letter to his father when he was teaching in Birmingham in about 1936 in which he said:

I've begun to do a bit of boxing three nights a week. I used to do a little at coll. and I've borrowed your green book and have picked up no end.

The reference to a green book is unclear, but could be a general book about boxing. A title simply called Boxing by Norman Clark was published by C.Arthur Pearson in 1921 which was issued in green cloth covers. Volume XI in the Lonsdale Library Series on Boxing: a guide to modern methods was published by Seely, Service & Co. in 1931, also in green cloth boards.

Cross-country running

The students' magazine of Dudley Training College for Teachers, called The Eagle, reported in the issue for Christmas 1932 (Ed. J.L. Carr) on all the college's societies and sports clubs. The report on page 27 for the Cross-country Club (C. Whitehouse Capt, F.A. Fellowes, Sec) contained this text:

Out of the sixty men in college this year, rugby took fifteen and the Association football eleven, with the usual officials, leaving about thirty presumably able-bodied men from which to gather an eight of reasonable running ability. . . . .

On November 19th, Birmingham University, with a strong ‘A’ Team’ beat us 42 – 36 though again C. Whitehouse won the race and J.L. Carr, running an exceptionally fine race finished second by a short head.

Rugby Union

In Volume 1 of The Northamptonshire Record, under a painting on page 12 of the Norman font basin at Grafton Regis, Carr has written:

Jack Higham from Rotherham was rector here in 1986. And Rotherham Grammar School was where I captained Castleford Secondary School’s 2nd XV against their 1st XV in 1929 & we lost 83 – 0. [Frankly I never fully understood the rules of R.U.]