Ex-professional footballer in trouble

Tuesday, February 10 – 1920
In view of the fact that he had lost a leg in the war, an ex-soldier, wearing the “1914 Star” – Bernard Pykett, Clyde Villas, Queen’s Walk, was dealt leniently with at the Nottingham Summons Court to-day, when he was alleged to have assaulted C.J. Mills, a tramcar conductor, on the 8th of November last. The case had been postponed owing to the defendant having been in hospital near Manchester.

Mr. H.W. Day, for the Corporation, said they very much regretted having to take these proceedings as the defendant was a disabled soldier. About 10.20 p.m. a car, of which complainant was conductor, was passing through the Market-place, and there was a crowd of between 30 and 40 people wanting to get on. Defendant was there, and was one who had been granted the privilege of free travelling. He was assisted on to the car, and when on the rear platform abused the conductor. Afterwards he was requested to go inside, and lady gave up her seat to him.

When the conductor came round for the fares, defendant made an attempt to hit him with his crutch. In consequence defendant had to be put off. He waited till the return of the car, and again interfered with the conductor. It was this continual reiteration of assault that had brought about the proceedings, and it was necessary to put a stop to it.

The conductor said he retaliated the second time defendant struck him. When Pykett attempted to hit him with the crutch inside the car, he struck a lady and afterwards used objectionable language.

Pykett pleaded provocation, and denied using objectionable language.

In reply to the Chairman (Mr. F. Acton) he said before the war he was a professional football, having played for Notts County, Liverpool, and other clubs. He was now making a living as a professional swimmer and diver.

In imposing a fine of 30s., the Chairman said everybody who had any feeling in them at all sympathised very deeply with men like defendant, who had been wounded in the service of the State. Personally, he had witnessed great consideration, very properly shown, by the tramway officials for men like him. That was all the more reason why those who had suffered should be mindful of the attention that they received.
(Nottingham Evening Post, 10-02-1920)

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