Everyone at Rotherham United has been deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our former player Harold Wilcockson, aged 78.
He signed for the Millers as an amateur from Hillsborough Boys Club along with Alan Wilcockson and Chris Rabjohn, in the week of his 19th birthday in July 1962 and turned pro June 1963. He displayed his potential when handed his chance at right back in the 1964/65 season, in which he made 14 appearances in total in his maiden campaign as a fully-fledged professional.
His form was so good, in fact, that he was an ever-present in the following campaign when he also helped himself to an important cup goal against Southend United that helped the Millers land a tie with Manchester United in the next round.
Primarily a right back, Harold was a tidy footballer who was one of a ‘new breed’ of attacking full backs that combined his sound defensive attributes with skill and an ability to go forwards. He continued his fine form into the 1966/67 season when he was rarely left out of the side.
The Sheffield-born operator kept his place in the side again as a new season began and he played in all of the opening 29 league games until the arrival of Tommy Docherty, who sold him to Doncaster Rovers in a move which is famously-remembered for it’s unique nature as the ‘two in, three out’ deal – which saw himself, Colin Clish and Chris Rabjohn depart, with Doncaster pair Denis Leigh and Graham Watson joining the Millers.
Harold turned out 127 times in total whilst at Millmoor and would go on to represent Doncaster Rovers over two spells, either side of a stint with Sheffield Wednesday.
He might have left Rotherham United for Tottenham Hostpur, who had kept tabs on him during the legendary Spurs manager Bill Nicholson’s tenure, but after the Millers turned down a first bid, they never made a second approach.
Everyone at Rotherham United would like to extend their heartfelt condolences to all of Harold’s family and friends at this incredibly difficult time.
Once a Miller, Always a Miller.