Ebbsfleet United are sorry to learn of the death of a former goalkeeper, Ted Bennett.
Ted – very probably the oldest surviving Fleet player until his death – passed away earlier this week, the day after his 93rd birthday. Born in north London, he played in the Football League with QPR and Watford, as well as turning out for Southall.
Perhaps his greatest claim to fame was representing Great Britain in the 1952 Helsinki Olympics, where his side – managed by England boss Walter Winterbottom – were beaten by Luxembourg in extra time. He also earned 11 caps as an England amateur international.
A finger injury ended his Watford career after 87 games and Ted arrived at Stonebridge Road in 1956 for a nominal fee, making his debut away at Weymouth in September of that year. As understudy to Southern League-winning goalkeeper Peter Heathcote, Ted’s opportunities in the first team were limited but he nevertheless made 10 appearances in the 1956/57 season, playing alongside several Fleet greats including his former Watford teammate Arthur Shaw, Jimmy Logie, Jimmy Scarth and Sam Chambers. He retired at the end of that season, Fleet going on to win the Southern League in the following campaign.
Following his playing days, Ted became a greengrocer.