Ben Massey, likely to have once been a soldier stationed in the area, was a regular goalscorer during Exeter City’s last season as an amateur club in 1907/08.
Born in Redditch, he had played for his local club before joining the army and appeared in the 1901 census for Newcastle-upon-Tyne as an artillery gunner. Having also represented the 110th Battery Royal Artillery upon moving to Exeter, he first played for Exeter City against the Devon and Cornwall Light Infantry on 6 October 1906 scoring in a 4-3 win. Netting five times in thirteen games in 1906/07 he followed up with ten goals from seventeen appearances the following season.
Like nearly all of his team mates he wasn’t engaged on a professional basis when the club joined the Southern League in 1908 although he remained in the Exeter area and was working for the city council in an agricultural capacity in the 1911 census. With the outbreak of the Great War, he returned to military service with 3643 RFA and was mentioned for his bravery in September 1917 when he rescued four colleagues who had been gassed and wounded.
He died at around the age of eighty in Exeter in 1962.