Born in Keyworth on 13 August 1879, and originally a framework knitter, Thomas Simpson played for the Notts Colts XXII in April 1897, but with little success. His first professional engagement was with Nottingham Forest CC in 1895 and in the two subsequent years was at Trent Bridge with Nottingham Commercial CC. From 1898 to 1906, Simpson was engaged with Heywood CC in the Central Lancashire League and showed much improved form; for that club in 1903 he took 90 wickets at less than 7 runs apiece and scored many runs. This brought him back of the notice of Notts CCC and on 20, 21 and 22 July 1903 he made his First-Class debut v Yorkshire at Headingley. However he was given only three overs and scored 2 and 9. In the same season Lancashire also gave him a trial in their second team. In 1904 Simpson played twice for Notts and made two appearances in 1905, the last being v the Australians at Trent Bridge on 8, 9 and 10 May. In five first-class matches for Notts he scored 38 runs @5.42 and took two wickets @42.50.

A left-arm medium-pace bowler and left-hand bat, Simpson continued to flourish in League cricket, in all he took about 2,000 wickets and scored over 10,000 runs. After leaving Heywood, he was engaged as follows: Rochdale 1907-13, Royton 1914-15, Rochdale as amateur in 1919, Castleton Moor 1920-22, Crompton 1923-24 and then various clubs in the Bolton League from 1925 to 1931. He finally retired in 1953 after 10 years as the groundsman for Rochdale CC. He died in Oldham General Hospital on 19 December 1961, aged 82 years.

Simpson was an excellent footballer. Originally with Keyworth FC, he joined Notts County in January 1899 and made seven Football League appearances for them as outside-left. Transferring to Leicester Fosse in October 1902 he appeared in 17 league games, scoring five goals. In May 1903 he joined Everton FC, making a single league appearance before joining non-league Nelson.

 

May 2020