Jim Barrett
Jim Barrett
Jim Barrett
● Jim Barrett, c1934 (WHFC)

born in England

James William Barrett was born on Saturday, 19th January, 1907, in Stratford, Essex.

The 5' 11½ (14st 2lbs) defender appeared for Donald Turner's Thistle in February, 1944, whilst a West Ham player.

Aged 37, he made his only appearance on Saturday, 12th February, 1944, in a 2-2 draw at home to Motherwell in the Southern League.

There were no goals for Jim in his one-off appearance for Thistle.

His club-list included West Ham United and Partick Thistle.

Jim died on Wednesday, 25th November, 1970, in Southwark, London, aged 63.

Bio Extra

At the Thistle Archive, there is no length we won't go to in search of the truth in Partick Thistle's story, which is why we end up trawling the likes of the “Civil and Military Gazette”, a daily British newspaper produced in Lahore, the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab! In their edition of 15th February 1944, lay some comments on the past weekend's Scottish football including the satisfying revelation that “Partick Thistle in fielding Barratt [sic] of West Ham United did well to draw after Motherwell led 2-0 at half time.

Jim was a well-known West Ham defender, and was turning out for Thistle as a guest on that occasion. The former English internationalist played in the 2-2 Southern League draw at Firhill in front of a 7,000 crowd against Motherwell at Firhill on 12 February 1944. Thistle were indeed 2-0 down, but came back with goals in the last 10 minutes to square the account.

Jim was born in West Ham in 1907, and had 2 brothers and 2 sisters. His father was an iron founder in the docks, and the family lived at Folkestone Road. He played for Fairburn House Boys Club, and joined West Ham, his local club, signing professional terms in 1923. He was an all-round sportsman, having been a champion boxer in his schooldays. He made 5 English League First Division appearances in the 1924-25 season. Jim had a hard job filling the boots of Hammers’ favourite George Kay, but as well as being a robust defender, his skill saw him play in all positions during his lengthy one club career (Partick Thistle excepted). Jim and his wife Elsie had a son, Jim Junior, born in November 1930, with Jim Junior also becoming a West Ham favourite, as well as playing for Nottingham Forest.

Jim made a solitary appearance for England in their match against Ireland in England’s 2-1 win over the Irish at Goodison Park on 22 October 1928. He twisted his left knee on making a clearance, and was withdrawn from the contest. He didn’t get the opportunity to play for his country again. He intended to retire from playing in 1938 having scored 53 times in 467 appearances but, come wartime, he returned to play a further 86 matches scoring 17. He even played in goal for the club during this period.

There is a gap in Jim’s wartime appearances for West Ham, in 1944. It is possible that Jim served in the military for a period (possibly as a PTI?), remembering the shortage of infantry manpower in the push from France to Germany in 1944-45. Post war he was in charge of the West Ham “A” team, and lined up alongside his young son in one match. Following a lengthy hospital stay, he died in November 1970, aged 63.

On account of his service during WWII, Jim is included in our feature piece, The Partick Thistle Returned →.

(DMAC/AFK)



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