Hotspur Towers - Les Bennett
Les Bennett was the inside right in the great side that won the Second and First Division titles at the start of the fifties and followed that with a runners up place. He scored 117 goals in 294 games for Spurs which places him 11th in the all time scorers list. Not bad for someone who didn’t make his debut until he was 28 years old. He scored two hat tricks for Spurs, one a four goal haul V Middlesborough.
Those who saw him describe him as talented, elegant and entertaining. Les was an excellent dribbler who also processed lightning pace, a skilful hard worker who created as many goals as he scored.
Les is another local lad who played for England Schools. He worked his way through our junior sides later moving to the Northfleet Nursery side. He became an amateur in 1935 whilst working for his families building firm. In the annual Northfleet trial game at WHL he scored a hat trick as they beat West Ham 3-2 in 1939 and he was offered professional forms. He marked his first debut in the wartime league with a hat trick as we beat Watford.
He was then called up to join the army and would see service in Egypt, India and the Far East. He made guest appearances for several teams and while in Northern Ireland for Distillery he also played for the Northern Ireland League V the League of Ireland.
Bennett trivia - Les was a ball boy at the 1932 FA Cup final.
and in 1935 he had a cameo appearance in Alfred Hitchcock’s film the ‘The 39 Steps.’
It would not be until the opening day of the 1946-47 season that he made his full debut at 28 and quickly made the inside right slot his own. He was the clubs top scorer three times, 1947, 49 and 52. He also represented the FA in a number of games and was a reserve for England.
In 1954 at 36 he moved to West Ham where he was captain. He appeared once more at White Hart Lane in 1964 as part of the John White Memorial game. When he retired he moved back to Tottenham and was often seen at WHL until his death in 1999.
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