Player Profile: William Platt

Honorary secretary of Southport Football Club (Rugby) 1879/80
Appointed captain of new Southport Football Club (Rugby) for the ill-fated 1881/82 season and original member of the Southport Football Club (Association) team.

A keen and successful sportsman all his life, one of his earliest achievements was on a penny-farthing cycle when he was just 18, winning a trophy in a race at Crewe.

Player and captain for the town’s lacrosse club, he also played tennis and won several prizes in rowing and canoeing, and as a swimmer and diver he excelled.

He was a prominent local football player, having played rugby for Corinthians, Wasps and Southport Football Club and was nominated team captain for the 1881 season under the handling code. He remained with Southport after the switch to association football.

At the age of 40 he took up golf and became the captain of the Blundell Golf Club in 1910. He later became part of the council of the Hesketh Golf Club. Secretary also to the Southport Curling Club, he represented the town in contests in Scotland.

Son of Wiganer James Platt, who, although originally a coal merchant and general dealer, was the town’s first auctioneer and later chartered accountant, William entered the family business himself when he was a teen and took an active part until shortly before his death.

Honorary club treasurer for Southport Football Club dating back at least to 1879, he remained involved with the club finances up until his death at the age of 80, having taken on the position of honorary auditor of Southport Central.

His father’s influence as a Wesleyan preacher saw William continue his involvement with the Church, playing the organ in most churches in the town and singing in many choirs, including the Southport Philharmonic, Southport Carol Society and as a member of the Mornington Road Church Choir.

Politically he was a staunch Conservative but refrained from taking an active role in politics. He did however form and name the County Club and was chairman in 1922. For 60 years he was a very prominent Freemason.