Jimmy Jones: 1927-2015

It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of former goalkeeper Jimmy Jones, the last surviving member of the team which clinched the 1951/52 Third Division North championship.

James Alfred Jones was born in Birkenhead in August 1927 and started his career at Everton shortly after the end of the Second World War before playing for Ellesmere Port in the 1946/47 season.

He joined City in the summer of 1951 having played 32 times in the Football League for New Brighton and missed just two matches as the Imps lifted the Northern section title, chalking up 121 goals in the process.

Whilst the likes of Andy Graver, Ernie Whittle and Johnny Garvie took the plaudits on the goalscoring front, it was a crucial save from Jimmy which ultimately brought the silverware to Sincil Bank.

Over 21,500 supporters were at the Bank for the final home game of the season, a Wednesday night fixture against Stockport County, and after a Garvie brace had but the Imps in the driving seat, County pulled one back before being awarded a penalty in the closing stages.

Future England international Ron Staniforth was the man entrusted with the spot kick but Jones stood up to the task producing a title-winning save; something he talked proudly of in future years.

On leaving City in 1954, Jimmy later played for Accrington Stanley and Rochdale and on his retirement from the game in 1961 had accrued a total of 331 Football League games.

He later settled in Horncastle and remained involved in the game during the 1980s as Horncastle Town's first team manager.

Jimmy, who officially opened Town's new Clubhouse in August of last year, passed away peacefully at his Horncastle home on Tuesday 5 May 2015. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.