Friday, 22 April 2016

Luton Town Footballer Absent Without Leave

Luton Town Football Club, 1908-9 [Z1306/75/21/5]

Saturday 22nd April 1916: Luton Town footballer Ernie Simms has been arrested for being absent without leave from the 1st Newcastle Field Artillery. Police Sergeant Hunt stated at the Borough Police Court that he had been on duty at the football match at the Town ground on Monday afternoon and saw Simms playing. He had seen the player around the town a good deal, sometimes in plain clothes and sometimes in uniform. When asked for his pass Simms produced one for a London Regiment, but later admitted it was not genuine. On making enquiries the policeman found that Simms had been absent from the 1st Battery of the Royal Field Artillery since 6th November last year, though Simms claimed he had returned since then and had only been absent for a fortnight [1]. He was remanded to await an escort, and P.S. Hunt was awarded ten shillings.

Source: Luton News, 27th April 1916

[1] During 1915-1916 Ernest Simms was charged three times for being absent without leave when returning to Luton to play football. World War I Luton gives more detail. 

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