Frank Gallimore

Frank Gallimore : Preston North End

Frank Gallimore was born on 19th October, 1908. He played for Witton Albion before signing for Preston North End in 1931. He made his debut at right-back later that year against Charlton. Dean Hayes (Who's Who of Preston North End) describes Gallimore as "never easily beaten... recovered well and was fast and strong in the tackle... decisive, unflinching, determined and consistent."

Gallimore was ever present in the 1932-33 season. At the end of that season, his brother, Leonard Gallimore, a left-back, joined the club. In the 1933-34 season, Preston won promotion to the First Division. Frank Gallimore suffered from injuries in the 1934-35 season but the following year he did not miss a game.

In the 1935-36 season, Preston finished 7th in the league. Preston also reached the FA Cup Final. Gallimore won a loser's medal when Sunderland won 3-1.

At the beginning of the next season, Preston North End made two important signings. In September, 1937, Preston purchased the high scoring George Mutch, from Manchester United for £5,000. The following month, Robert Beattie a skillful inside forward, arrived from Kilmarnock for a fee of £2,500. They joined fellow Scotsmen, Jimmy Dougal, Andrew Beattie, Jimmy Maxwell, Tom Smith, Hugh O'Donnell, Francis O'Donnell, and Bill Shankly in the side.

Preston had a successful run in the 1937-38 FA Cup. Preston beat West Ham United in the 3rd round with George Mutch scored a hat trick. Mutch also scored goals in the 4th round against Leicester City and in the semi-final when Preston beat Aston Villa 2-1.

In the FA Cup Final Preston played Huddersfield Town. This was the first time that a whole match was shown live on television. Even so, far more people watched the game in the stadium as only around 10,000 people at the time owned television sets. No goals were scored during the first 90 minutes and so extra-time was played. In the last minute of extra-time, Bill Shankly put George Mutch through on goal. Alf Young, Huddersfield's centre-half, brought him down from behind and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot. Mutch was injured in the tackle but after receiving treatment he got up and scored via the crossbar. It was the only goal in the game and Gallimore won a cup winners' medal.

Gallimore was ever present in the 1938-39 season. On Friday, 1st September, 1939, Adolf Hitler ordered the invasion of Poland. The football that Saturday went ahead as Neville Chamberlain did not declare war on Germany until Sunday, 3rd September. The government immediately imposed a ban on the assembly of crowds and as a result the Football League competition was brought to an end.

The government gave permission for football clubs to play friendly matches. In the interests of public safety, the number of spectators allowed to see these games was limited to 8,000. These arrangements were later revised, and clubs were allowed gates of 15,000 from tickets purchased on the day of the game through the turnstiles.

Gallimore was a member of the Preston North End team that won the North Regional League title in 1941. It has been argued by Jack Rollin (Soccer at War: 1939-45) that: "The first club to benefit from a youth policy to any marked degree was Preston North End, who owed success in 1940-41 to their exceptional pre-war structure."

Frank Gallimore retired from football during the Second World War. He had played in 244 games for the club. He became a publican in Preston but later emigrated to Canada.