Thomas Horn Fayer

Unlike many of the early Everton football players who met on Stanley Park, Thomas Fayer did not come from the newly-established Anglican community around the Breckfield Road area, but from an Anglo-Irish neighbourhood in another part of Everton.

His father, William, had been born in Preston where he had met and married Newry-born Anna Horn before moving to settle at 151 Great Homer Street in Liverpool. Their first child, Thomas, was born here on 11 January 1866 and baptised at the church of St Anthony. The family later moved to Rokerby Street where two additions to the family were baptised at the church of St Francis Xavier.

The Liverpool newspapers do not mention where Fayer developed his football skills, but he was first reported playing for Everton against Bootle in a friendly match at the start of the 1885-86 season. He took a while to settle in with his team mates until he gained some plaudits from the Lancashire press for keeping a cool head during an off-colour performance that saw Everton nearly make a shock exit from the Liverpool Cup competition at the hands of the High Park club in Southport. Nonetheless he made regular appearances between that season and was credited with goals in victories against Oswestry and Bury. 

Fayer took part in the semi-final which saw Everton eliminate Stanley, and was in the side when they faced Bootle in the final at Walton Stiles. Around 8,000 people were reported to have squeezed into ground to see Job Wilding give Everton the lead after twenty minutes. The newspapers again praised the play of Fayer as Bootle pressed his side hard while trying to equalise. They failed to break down the stubborn resistance and, when the final whistle sounded, had to concede defeat. For the first time the trophy was awarded on the ground before it was transported, in the care of George Dobson, back to the club headquarters at the Sandon. In the final weeks of the 1885-86 season Tom Fayer took part in the football tournament that was organised to mark the opening of the new grounds of the Liverpool Athletic Club before the season came to an end. He scored in the semi-final versus Stanley to clinch a 2-0 victory. He played in the final against Bootle which saw Everton run out victors, 2-1. Confusion then prevailed as to his whereabouts.

Empire News & The Umpire, 11 April 1886

The following August the Football Field remarked that… Everton have lost a promising half back in Tom Fayer who has emigrated to North South Wales. He had, in fact, joined the Merchant Navy and was working as a cook on board a ship that was on a return voyage between Liverpool and Australia. By October of that year, Fayer was back in Liverpool where he played football for Stanley against Oakfield Rovers. Soon after, he made a voyage to North America and, on returning home, played football for the Everton second XI.

Thomas as a steward on the Majestic 1899 (no. 172)

Census 1901 (bottom of page)

Census 1911

On 12 November 1894 Thomas Fayer married Mary Catherine Griffiths at the church of St Francis de Sales, Walton-on-the-Hill and the couple settled at 35 Romily Street. According to the 1901 census, he had now quit the sea and was working as a barman. By 1911 the family, which now had three children, had taken up residence 19 Braemar Street where the head of the household was employed as a dock labourer. Thomas Fayer lived in Liverpool until his death in March 1935.

Sources:

Everton Results.com

Ancestry.co.uk

By Tony Onslow

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