Former City winger Ken Barrett has died in Droitwich at the age of 77.
Bromsgrove born, he was a boyhood Aston Villa fan and signed for the club as a 15-year-old in 1953. After impressing for the junior teams he was signed as a professional by manager Eric Houghton (a Villa legend who was born in Lincolnshire) and made an impressive debut by scoring twice in a 2-1 win over Newcastle United in October 1958.
He scored again in his second appearance but only played five times as Villa were relegated from the First Division and after Houghton was sacked he was released at the end of the season.
He joined Lincoln in June 1959 appearing in the opening two games of the new season, both defeats, before being dropped to the reserves. A call up for his National Service meant he didn’t appear again for the first team until 1961 and whilst in the army he was posted to Blandford Forum in Dorset where he played games for Weymouth. He later moved to Aldershot where he became a physical training instructor and also represented the army at football.
He returned to City’s first team in September 1961 and enjoyed his best season as he appeared 14 times in the League, scoring four times, as well as making one League Cup appearance. The Club though was in a downward spiral and suffered a second successive relegation to Division Four.
Despite featuring regularly for the reserves in 1962/63, Ken only appeared in an early season League Cup tie and an April home defeat to Crewe before being released.
He moved on to Stourbridge where he made over 200 appearances, scoring over 70 goals, before retiring in 1968 to become a bookmaker. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.
Kenneth Brian Barrett
05/05/1938 – 07/06/2015
Sources: Bromsgrove Advertiser, Who’s Who of Lincoln City, www.enfa.co.uk