Pym, Richard (Dick)

Birth Date

2nd February 1893

Birthplace

Topsham

Occupation

Goalkeeper

Biographical Text

Pym initially followed the family professional as a youngster, namely becoming a fisherman, something he continued to do throughout his playing career and after.

Pym was signed by Exeter City from Topsham in December 1911, making his first team debut three months later in a 1-1 draw at home to Stoke. This was the start of a remarkable 186 consecutive appearances for Exeter in the League.

He toured South America in 1914 with the Grecians, but unfortunately he broke two ribs in the first game against Argentine North, which Exeter won 1-0. Ironically he suffered on the outward voyage to South America from sea sickness.

He recalled many years later, that he brought a parrot back to England from Brazil, which happily settled in at St James' Park.

When it died, it was buried under the goal, to be hurriedly dug up again, to break Exeter's losing streak that had commenced at the parrots internment.

In 1920, Exeter City sold Pym to Bolton Wanders for what was then a huge transfer fee of £5,000, which enabled the club to purchase St James’ Park outright.

Pym made 301 league outings for Bolton as well as appearing in the famous ‘White Horse’ FA Cup Final of 1923.

He played in two more winning cup finals in 1926 and 1929. During his time with Bolton, Pym was capped for England three times.

In 1930 he left Bolton to sign for Yeovil, but he retired from playing after twelve months. Living in Topsham again, he was often seen in the middle of the River Exe on a fishing trip. He was made President of the local Topsham Town Football Club. He was appointed assistant trainer at Exeter City in the summer of 1937.

Pym died on 16th September 1988 and Exeter City held a minutes silence in his ‘honour’ at the first home game after his death. Exeter City Council have named a close, off Grecian Way, Dick Pym Close.

Appearances

203

Citation

“Pym, Richard (Dick),” The Grecian Archive, accessed June 19, 2018, http://grecianarchive.exeter.ac.uk/items/show/898.

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