FOOTBALL: Tribute to Crick’s Wilf Simms

Wilf Simms
Wilf Simms

Lifetime dedicated to football and his village

Few people could ever be as dedicated to their village as Wilf Simms, who died on Saturday May 9, aged 79.

Born in Crick in 1936, Wilf joined Crick Athletic FC under 18s team in 1949 - and didn’t hang up his boots until he was 43.

He progressed through the club’s reserves to become first team captain, playing in the same team as his son Alan on several occasions.

Wilf, a life member, was manager of the first team for 15 years and even after he had stepped down, was still at every home game welcoming referees and opposition with a cup of tea. He remained a regular at home games right up until just two weeks before he died.

Wilf’s dedication kept him as club secretary for an incredible 50 years, from 1961 to 2011. He had also been Tote promoter since 1960.

If that wasn’t enough, Wilf organised the club’s six-a-side tournament from 1972 to 2008.

He was also president of the Colts section of the club and a fundraiser, along with his wife Joyce, to whom he had been married for 54 years.

They had two children, Alan and June, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Wilf worked at English Electric/GEC for 47 years and served in the army (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers) during his national service from 1958-60.

A key figure in the village, Wilf was a founder member of Crick Playing Field Association and chairman from 1969 to 2013.

He also became a founder member of Crick Sports Field Association in 2005 and had served on the parish council for the last 15 years.

Outside of the village, his footballing interests saw him a life member of the Coventry Alliance and Northants Combination Football Leagues.

He also enjoyed cricket and was vice president of Rowland United Cricket Club, where his son and grandsons play.

Away from sport his other hobby was keeping poultry and he was president of Northamptonshire Poultry Association.