North Shields FC in mourning for cup legend Tommy Orrick

Tommy Orrick pictured last year.
Tommy Orrick pictured last year.

North Shields Football Club is in mourning after the death of cup legend Tommy Orrick at the age of 74.

Tommy’s death followed a battle against motor neurone disease which left him with severe mobility problems.

Tommy was the classic super-sub in the 1969 Robins side that famously lifted the FA Amateur Cup, a precursor to the FA Vase, at Wembley.

And he was overjoyed that he was able to return to the London stadium some 46 years later in May this year to see his beloved team win the FA Vase.

Tommy, in a wheelchair, had to be lifted into the ground by team-mates Mick Morgan and Ron Tatum, and he relished his chats with current manager Graham Fenton and the 2015 victors in the hotel over that wonderful Wembley weekend.

Tommy is the fourth member of the Frank Brennan ‘Braves’ sadly no longer with us, joining George Thompson, Richie Hall and Alan Driver.

Joining North Shields aged just 17 and playing alongside Frank Brennan, Tommy later had spells at Bishop Auckland, Crook Town and Whitley Bay, but it was at Blyth Spartans that he really shone and between 1965 and 1968, he netted a remarkable 115 goals for the Northumbrians.

Moving back to North Shields, he was to become part of the legendary side that won the treble in 1969 of the FA Amateur Cup, Northern League and league cup.

At Wembley, he came on while the Robins were losing 1-0, but he galvanised the side, sending over a corner from which Richie Hall headed home, then releasing Brian Joicey to drive in the winner.

Tommy scored 45 times that season, and in the following two years, he was part of the Shields side that competed in the European Amateur Cup Final against Almas of Rome and shared the trophy.

Tommy leaves wife Ann and three children – Julie, David and Mark – and seven grandchildren, plus one great-granddaughter.

His funeral will be held on Friday, October 23, at 11am at St Paul’s RC Church in Dewley, Cramlington, and he will be buried at noon at Mayfield Cemetery, in Village Road, Cramlington.

A reception is being planned at the Bay Horse Inn, in Sanderson Terrace, Cramlington, though that has yet to be confirmed.

Donations in lieu of flowers to St Oswald’s Hospice in Gosforth, Newcastle.

Because he was not a lover of suits and ties, Tommy is being laid to rest in a replica 1969 North Shields shirt.