theyflysohigh : Steve Marsh

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Banner Hammers Logo theyflysohigh Walker playing for Leytonstone in Italy medal Wembley Cup Winners Stick Pin Walker playing for Leytonstone at Wembley 1956-57 Colts Leytonstone 67-68 Team Group

Roy Walker (1939 - 2015) ...

As a schoolboy Roy attended Stratford Grammar School and soon tasted football success as a member of the West Ham Boys team which reached the Final of the Corinthian Shield on April 26, 1954 and the semi-final of the English trophy.


Soon after he signed for West Ham United and quickly became a regular member of the South East Counties League and Southern Junior Floodlit Cup sides from 1955 to 1957. As well as winning an international cap he played for Essex Youth.



by Roger Hillier and Steve Marsh

1968 : Coppa Ottorino Barassi : S.T.E.F.E.R. Rome

Leytonstone Cup final programme 1969 WALKER Roy H&S


Youth Tournament Dortmund, Germany

57_04_20 Youth Tournament Dortmund 57_04_20 Youth Tournament Dortmund Team page Crest 1956-57 Youth Germany Dortmund 54_04_26 West Ham Boys v. Walthamstow Boys

Back row: Bobby Moore, Harry Cripps, Brian Goymer, Roy Walker,

Bert Howe,  John Lyall

Front row: Andy Smillie, George Fenn, Terry McDonald, Colin Norcott, Charlie Rowlands

57_05_02 WHU v. Manchester United FAYC Final 57_05_07 Manchester United v. WHU FAYC Final

F.A. Youth Cup Final : Manchester United

May 1957


First Practice Match : Club Colours v. Blues

Goymer, Kirkup, Howe, Lewis, Walker, Lyall, Rowlands, Smith, Fenn, Cartwright, McDonald

1955-56 Hammers debut

South East Counties League "Colts"

Watford 2 - 1 West Ham United

Vicarage Road

24th September 1955

1st Leg

West Ham United 2 - 3 Manchester United

(Cartwright, Fenn [pen])

The nearest Walker came to a first team place was a pre-season Public Practice match at Upton Park on August 10, 1957. The centre-half played alongside Bobby Moore at the heart of the defense for the 'Blues' against the 'Colours' in a 2-2 draw.

In the 1957-58 season Roy made a couple of appearances for West Ham’s A team in the Metropolitan League.  These were both away fixtures against Newbury Town (August 24) and Headington United reserves (September 14) in 2-1 and 3-2 respective wins. The 2-1 win over Newbury Town included a net from Bobby Moore. Headington United were later renamed ‘Oxford United’


2nd Leg

Manchester United 5 - 0 West Ham United

Goymer, Kirkup, Howe, Lewis, Walker, Lyall, Rowlands, Smith, Fenn, Cartwright, McDonald

57_08_10 First Practice Match Public Practice match TS 57_08_10 First Practice Match 03

Cripps, Banfield, Lewis, Kirkup, Goymer, Walker, Howe, Lyall, Moore, Robinson

Rowlands, Smith, Fenn, Cartwright, McDonald

Smillie, Norcott

Gomer Walker Moore

Brian Goymer, Roy Walker, Bobby Moore

Leytonstone in Isthmian League

Amateur Ranks with Hendon in the Athenian League

Support material courtesy of Stuart Allen, John Northcutt, Richard Miller and Nigel Turner

Watford Colts

Roy Walker’s debut match for the Hammers was in the South East Counties League against Watford at their Vicarage Road ground on September 24, 1955. By all accounts West Ham  were unfortunate to lose 2-1 though Walker was in good company that afternoon, as filling the inside-left berth was future West Ham manager John Lyall.


Walker's two other appearances that season were in the home fixture against Charlton Athletic April 7, 1956 (2-3) in the unusual position of centre forward before reverting to his familiar centre-half role against Fulham April 21, 1956 (2-0).  Both games were staged at West Ham's Green Silley Weir training ground in Wanstead.

The big defender moved to Isthmian League side Leytonstone in 1964 and made his first team debut on November 28, 1964 on the same day as his eldest daughter was born. Back in east London he achieved more success as a member of their side which won the Isthmian League title in 1965-66.



Stading: Fred Mann, Tony Barranes, Tony Mackie, John Allbon, Bobby Hames,

Mick Thomson, Billy Hadlow, Les Tilley, Dave Andrews, Roy Walker, Ron Stone

Sitting: John Charles, Peter Diwell, Alan Minall, Ken Gray, Brian Harvey

F.A. Amateur Cup


Wembley Stadium

20 April 1968

Victory in 1968’s FA Amateur Cup final gave Leytonstone passage to the first ever Coppa Ottorino Barassi, a competition between the winners of Italy’s and England’s amateur cups.  

The competition was contested by the English FA Amateur Cup winners and the Italian Coppa Italia Dilettanti winners and was played over two-legs, one at each participating club's stadium.


The east Londoners opponents in the final were S.T.E.F.E.R. The amateur club was founded in 1927 by the city's transport company. Their initials represent the Tramway and Electric Railway Company of Rome.

England Youth cap


Two Cup Finals

57_04_16 Chelsea v. WHU SJFC Final



David Gaskell

Terry Caldwell

John Cartwright

A. Chadburn

M. Connolly

Jimmy Greaves

William  Houghton

D. Jacobs

Joe Kirkup

Roy Walker

D. Wright

Once a Hammer, Always a Hammer

Born a short free-kick from the Boleyn Ground, Roy held a West Ham season ticket for many years after hanging up his football boots. His favoured position was in the East side 'Chicken Run' until the late eighties.

'theyflysohigh' would like to pass on our condolences to Roy's wife Frances who kindly allowed access to his treasured photos and memorabilia, daughters Jane and Sara, and his grandsons Joel, Rhys and Ewan and also to his many friends and former playing colleagues at this sad time.

Back row: Roy Walker, Mick Thomson, Alan Minall, Brian Harvey, Dave Andrews, Ken Gray, Bobby Hames

Front row: Billy Hadlow, John Charles, Peter Diwell, Les Tilley

The careers of individual members of a successful youth team start on the same path but can quickly diverge. Some progress to the senior ranks to make first team debuts while others don’t reach the same heights but nevertheless forge fascinating careers in other avenues of the game.


An excellent example of this is from West Ham’s successful 1956-57 season’s youth team which won the Southern Junior Floodlit Cup and reached the final of the FA Youth Cup.  

Six of the XI, Joe Kirkup, Bert Howe, John Lyall, John Smith, John Cartwright and Terry McDonald progressed to make football league debuts while centre half, Roy Walker, made a name for himself in the amateur game.


As a colt Hammer Roy achieved the top recognition of an England Youth International cap, contributed to the 1956-57 cup campaigns and progressed to make his debut for West Ham's Metropolitan League side.


After leaving the club he moved into the amateur ranks and enjoyed a successful amateur career.


Born: West Ham May 17, 1939 Roy Walker died February 10, 2015 aged 75.

In the 1956-7 FA Youth Cup campaign Walker played in seven of the nine matches including both legs of the final against Manchester United. His understudy for the two early campaign games he missed was an up and coming player called Bobby Moore.

Southern Junior Floodlight Cup Final : Chelsea

April 1957

On April 16, 1957 four days after the under 18s had won their  FA Youth Cup semi-final, they met Chelsea in the SJFC final away at Stamford Bridge. Roy wore the number five shirt in the 2-1 victory, with goals from George Fenn and Charles Rowlands.


The Hammers team that evening:


Brian Goymer

Joe Kirkup

Bert Howe

Clive Lewis

Roy Walker

John Lyall

Charles Rowlands

John Smith

George Fenn

Andy Smillie

Terry McDonald


Crossed Hammer Crossed Hammer Crossed Hammer

Again in the four game Southern Junior Floodlit Cup (SJFC) campaign in the one game Walker missed Bobby Moore stepped in.


Roy’s sterling performances at the centre of the defense were rewarded when he was selected to represent England in the youth international against Northern Ireland in the Home Championship on May 11, 1957.


Joining Roy in the England team which won 6-2 at the Leyton Stadium that evening were fellow Hammers Joe Kirkup and John Cartwright, and future Hammer, Jimmy Greaves.

Two weeks after the SJFC triumph the young Hammers met Manchester United in the two legged final of the FA Youth Cup. This was the first time the club had reached the final.  


A full report on this FA Youth Cup campaign will appear in a future “theyflysohigh” article. This article will highlight how the Hammers lost the final 7-2 on aggregate after 3-2 and 5-0 defeats at Upton Park and Old Trafford respectively. The aggregate score suggests the final was a very unbalanced affair, which it was in the Old Trafford leg due to star player and captain John Smith’s injury and early departure from the match.  With no substitutes in those days it meant West Ham  played with 10 men for most of the game.

Walker trade card Crossed Hammer

National Service & Queens Park Rangers

On leaving West Ham he joined the army for national service. Whilst on national duties he played for Queens Park Rangers third team / reserves as an amateur.  He was offered a professional contract by the Loftus Road club but declined the 'Hoops' offer.  

Crossed Hammer

Page from Official Team Book

Walker went on to have a successful amateur career, first with the Athenian League side Hendon F.C. and later with Leytonstone. He joined Hendon at the tail-end of the 1960-61 campaign.

Walker made his non-league debut April 26, 1961 against Walton & Hersham in a season “The Dons” won their third Athenian League title. Though he just missed out on an Athenian League winner’s medal as he hadn't played the required number of league games to qualify. In his four seasons at Claremont Road Roy chalked up 85 appearances and scored a solitary goal.

Roy Walker Leytonstone Team 1967-68

Two seasons later in 1967-68 the Granleigh Road side reached Wembley for the final of the prestigious F.A. Amateur Cup. After overcoming Sutton United in the semi-final at Crystal Palace's Selhurst Park they met Chesham United at Wembley Stadium. Roy picked up a FA Amateur Cup winners’ medal as Leytonstone beat the Buckinghamshire side 1-0.

Playing in the same Leytonstone team as Roy, was Dave Andrews who went on to become the chairman of Dagenham & Redbridge, Leytonstone was one of the constituent clubs that made up the Daggers. Roy was a life member of Dagenham.

Roy Walker in a heading dual with Chesham United No.9 Ron Fruen

Roy Walker's Dressing Room Pass

Leytonstone's 1967-68 Silverware

Tributes Clive Charles Noel Cantwell

Wembley Winners

Leytonstone became the first winners of the cup as they won on the away goals rule following a 3-3 aggregate score. The home leg ended 1-1 while the return leg held at Rome’s Olympic Stadium finished all square at 2-2.

Italian Coppa Dilettanti


Walkers Dressing Room Pass Amateur Medal Keyring Badge Leytonstone Silverware 1967-68 1956-57 Colts