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Players Index Page Last Updated
22 September 2021

John Brockbank

Cambridge University AFC

1 appearance, 0 goals

P 1 W 0 D 1 L 0 F 0: A
50% successful

minutes played:


  John Benn Brockbank
  John Brockbank was also an actor, who used the name John Benn
Birth Tuesday, 22 August 1848 in Whitehaven, Cumberland
  registered as John Brockbank in Whitehaven, July-September 1848
  According to the 1851 census, John is the eldest of two children to James and Jane (née Nicholson), living at 5 Lowther Street in Whitehaven with three servants. His father is a practising solicitor (Armistead & Brockbank, Whitehaven).
According to the 1861 census, John is now the eldest of five children, and along with five servants, they all live at 82 Louth Street in Whitehaven.
According to the 1871 census, an undergraduate at Cambridge, John is visiting the Austin's at Pemberton Villa, 1 High Road in Tottenham.
Marriage to May Pimm, on 16 January 1878, at Strand Registrar Office, London
  Brockbank's address was given as Evans' Hotel in Covent Garden. A thriving and sumptuous music hall
Children John and May Brockbank had three daughters together, Marguerite (b.10 November 1878), Dora (b.1880) and Naomi (b.1882)
  In the 9 Feb 1879 edition, an advert announcing 'MR. JOHN BENN (Mr. John Brockbank) terminates Thirteen Months' Engagement with the "Pink Dominos" Company February 15th. The 26 April 1890 edition printed a letter about 'THEATRICAL CRICKET signed JOHN BENN BROCKBANK.' - The Era
  According to the 1881 census, John is a visitor of shipbroker Frederick Hamilton at 43 Siddeley Street at Toxteth Park in Lancashire. John is stated as being an actor and a Lit BA Cambridge. He is there with his wife, May, and second daughter, Dora.
According to the 1891 census, the 'Actor' John, is living at 27 Grove Gardens in Marylebone with the rest of his family, and all of his daughters, Margurite, Dora and Naomi.
Death Tuesday afternoon, 4 February 1896 in Fulham, London from bronchitis and a congested liver. The whereabouts of his wife after this point is not known.
aged 47 years 166 days registered in Fulham January-March 1896
"MR JOHN BENN BROCKBANK, we regret to state, died Tuesday afternoon, last, at his residence at West Kensington, at two o'clock in the afternoon, from bronchitis and congested liver. Mr Brockbank was for some time a member of Miss Cissy Grahame's provincial company. After breaking a blood-vessel, he passed away very quietly in a state of unconsciousness. The funeral with take place at Kensal-green Cemetery, at one o'clock today."
- The Era, Saturday, 8 February 1896
Funeral Friday 1.00pm, 8 February 1896 at Kensal Green cemetery.
Source Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990] &

Playing Career

Club(s) Brockbank was educated at Shrewsbury School of whom he represented at football before going up to Cambridge University. He subsequently earned his "Blues" appearing for Cambridge University AFC against Oxford University AFC in 1874 and 1875. Also played with Wanderers FC and Clapham Rovers FC.
Club honours None
Individual honours London FA (between 1872 & 1874)
Played cricket for MCC and Cumberland.
Height/Weight not known
Source Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990] & Andy Mitchell's First Elevens [2012]

England Career

Player number One of eleven who became the first players (6) to appear for England.
Position(s) Forward
Only match No. 1, 30 November 1872, Scotland 0 England 0, a friendly match at The West of Scotland Cricket Ground, Hamilton Crescent, Partick, Glasgow, aged 24 years 100 days.
Distinctions Also played first class cricket for England in 1874, as a right-hand batsman.
The twelfth England player to die, and the second to die from the original 1872 team.

Beyond England

By profession, Brockbank was an actor. - An English Football Internationalists' Who's Who. Douglas Lamming (1990). Hatton Press, p.47.

The Numbers
parties Appearances minutes captain
1 1 90 0 none
The minutes here given can only ever be a guideline and cannot therefore be accurate, only an approximation.
1 0 1 0 0 0 =0 1 1 0 0 50 =0
His only match was a friendly match and at an away venue

Match History
 Club: Cambridge University A.F.C. - one full appearance (90 min) F.A. Committee - one full appearance (90 min)x

apps match match details comp res. rundown pos

Age 25
1 1 30 November 1872 - Scotland 0 England 0
The West of Scotland Cricket Ground, Partick
Fr AD   for

the sixth player to appear on an England teamsheet
the first player from Cambridge University AFC to represent England