The Bower & Collier Family History

Research by Colin Bower

New Milton Discussioin Group

January Online Discussion/Zoom Meeting

Question 4. Should Jimmy Greaves have been knighted?


Answers include some from Spurs fans and some clearly not!

1. Knighthoods are handed out much quicker these days after sporting success.

The 1966 World Cup team should all have received them including Jimmy Greaves and any other squad members who played in qualifying games.

Too late for some now.

2. Love Jimmy Greaves but don’t think a knighthood deserved unless he has done more charitable work than I’m aware of.

Pleased he got recognised in honours list.

3. Yes. He probably would have been honoured if they had allowed substitutes when we won the World Cup.

Britain does not produce a plethora of world-class sportsmen, many of whom have been knighted including Geoff Hurst, who replaced Jimmy Greaves in the 1966 Word Cup winning-team.

Having said that, Geoff Hurst has also been an ambassador for the sport and undertaken charity work too.

Even without the World Cup medal, Jimmy Greaves was world-class with an outstanding scoring record.

He should have been given an honour years ago. (see Nore below). Perhaps it was his former well-known alcohol-addiction that held him back (though it has not stopped othe addicts like Elton John getting knighted.)

The granting of an MBE goes some way to resolving the issue but it does seem petty and out-of-touch.

4.Not sure any of the World Cup squad should have been knighted.

There were several others in the squad who were not knighted.

5. No. He was awarded his MBE for ‘services to football’, which, as a professional footballer, was his overpaid job!

All such awards should be given (if at all) to those who have voluntarily given their time and effort, without payment or reward, to good causes.

6. Who was Jimmy Greaves? Know he was a footballer.

Has he done great and good things since (to warrant a knighthood)?

7. No. Don't agree that salaried people getting knighthoods.

Awards should go to people who do things voluntarily.

Giving Jimmy Greaves a knighthood because people like Mick Jagger and Elton John have, is a case of two wrongs don't make a right.

8. Why Jimmy Greaves?

Yes, but a lot of other footballers should have been too.

At least he has been recognised.

9. Perhaps one of the best strikers of his time, Jimmy Greaves (MBE) was a player of great ability and incredible in his way.

Later, he became a successful football pundit and the football world bows before his greatness.

But, a Tottenham player for a knighthood?

10. Yes. Without doubt. Not my team!

Saw him play in his prime. One of England's greatest footballers.

Able to run with the ball at his feet and beat players. Some player!

11. I am sorry, I know Jimmy Greaves is a footballer but do not know much more, so have no opinion.

12. Zoom Meeting 21 January 2021

He received an MBE like some of the other members of the World Cup winning team.

Though we agreed that the honours system did not always reward the right people, it was good to see Jimmy Greaves honoured albeit a bit late in the day.

He did not appear to have been involved in charity work, so a knighthood did not appear to be warranted.

Though long ago, he was an amazing footballer and deserved his award, perhaps though a sympathetic gesture to someone suffering ill-health.


Reluctance to give honours and then grudgingly given:

World Cup Winning Team

1967 Bobby Moore O.B.E.

1969 Bobby Charlton O.B.E.

1970 Gordon Banks O.B.E.

1974 Bobby Charlton C.B.E.

1974 Jack Charlton O.B.E.

1978 Martin Peters M.B.E.

1979 Geoff Hurst M.B.E.

1994 Bobby Charlton knighted

1998 Geoff Hurst knighted

2000 Remainder (5) of Team M.B.E.

- Alan Ball
- Roger Hunt
- Nobby Stiles
- Ray Wilson
- George Cohen

Colin Bower
21 January 2021

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