When Harry Parkinson arrived at the Thornyholme Ground, he had intended to watch a Football League match but instead found himself taking part.
He had been born, 9th of December 1866, in Oswaldtwistle, and spent the early years of his life, along with his Mother Catherine, living at the Star Inn where his Grandfather is Landlord. At the time of the 1881 census, Catherine is now the Landlady while her son has started to work as a Weaver in the Cotton Industry.
Being brought up in a beer drinking environment may have been the reason why Harry developed an aversion to alcohol for he is now a confirmed teetotaller and playing football for a working mans club known as Bells Temperance. They enter the 1885- 86 Lancashire Junior Cup and, after disposing of Everton, win the trophy by beating Darwen Rovers, 6-2, in the final tie at Fleetwood. Next season Harry Parkinson, and his team mates, again reached the final, which was played at Anfield, where around 5,000 people watched them retain the trophy win a 1-0 victory over Lowerhouse. On the 19th of December 1888, he set out from his home at 354 Union Road, to watch Accrington take on Everton.
He arrived to find the visitors in state of disorder owing to the non-arrival of George Farmer and accepted the offer to replace the him. Parkinson was well-known to the Accrington followers having assisted them last May, against Blackburn Rovers, to win the East Lancashire Charity Cup. The game had been in progress for 5 minutes his shot was… feebly repelled by Horne and Watson, rushing up, scored for Everton. (Lancashire Evening Post.) Nevertheless, the bright start, shown by the visitors slowly faded and the home side went on to win 3-1. Harry Parkinson’s then returned to playing with Bells Temperance.
On the 30th of March 1895, he married Alice Ann Hayes and settled at the family home on Union Road where their only child Catherine was born in 1897. Harry is still a member of Bells Temperance but the football section, unable to meet the rent demands, are about to be forced out of their home at Woodnook. (It was later taken over by Accrington Stanley.) The 1901 census records that Harry, still working in the Cotton Industry, has been
promoted to the position of Overseer while his Mother continues to run the Beer Shop on Union Road. By 1911 the Parkinson family have moved to 24 Paddock Street where all 3 of them have various positions within the Cotton Industry. Henry Parkinson lived in Ac