Finlay Speedie
(and Willie)

The brothers Speedie, the younger Finlay, born in 1880, and Willie, two years earlier, emerged, like very many players from Dumbarton, from the tenements that once stood in the angle of land between High and Bridge Streets. Willie, a winger, would play for the hometown club and Third Lanark, Finlay, an inside-forward, from 1900 to 1906 a hundred times for Rangers, plus three Scotland caps, then half a hundred starts for Newcastle. In that time he would win two Scottish League Championships, a Scottish Cup and an English League Championship. And that was before coming back to another century of appearances at Boghead from 1909 to 1920, including promotion for The Sons back to the Scottish top-flight in 1911 and in the Great War years service with the Argylls and the award of the Military Medal for gallantry.  

In fact Finlay would then remain in Dumbarton for the rest of his days, within football coaching the town team in the 1930s but otherwise working as a Shipbuilding Engineer, having been married again locally in 1902 to Bridget McColl, also born on the High St., and with whom he would have two daughters. And the family involvement and contribution to football in the town and beyond would extend still further. His nephew, Willie's son Bob Speedie, would play for Dumbarton again in the 1930s, whilst Bob's cousin, Robert Ferrier Jnr., make from 1917 to 1937 over six hundred appearances as a left-winger for Motherwell. In 1901 Willie Speedie had married a Janet Ferrier. Indeed Bob Ferrier Jnr. might well have won Scottish caps too, had he not been born in Sheffield, his father, Robert Ferrier Snr., said Janet's brother, Dumbarton-born, an inside forward, six years older than Willie and initially also a Dumbarton player having then gone South, where between 1894 and 1906 he made over three hundred starts for The Wednesday.     

Finlay Speedie would in later life settle in Wallace St. in his home town and it would be at No. 13 that he would pass away in 1953 at the age of seventy-two.  Bridget would outlive him by three years, dying in 1956. Willie Speedie would outlive them both. His passing, as a retired Engine Fitter and a widower, would be in 1958 at the age of seventy-nine at 50, Townend Road. Janet nee Ferrier had predeceased him by a dozen years, her brother, Bob Snr., also dying in Dumbarton a year earlier still.   

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