RIP | Martyn King

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Sun 29 Dec 2019

It is with sadness that we report on the passing of another former player, after the death of Martyn King on Christmas Day at the age of 82.

A legend at Colchester United, where he scored 139 goals in 227 appearances between 1957 and 1964, Martyn was not only their Football League record goalscorer, but also jointly holds the records for most goals in a match and most hat-tracks scored for the U’s.

He then moved to the Racecourse Ground in October 1964 and added a further 26 goals for the Robins over the next 19 months.

A minute's applause was held in tribute ahead of Colchester's League Two match with Exeter City yesterday.

Barry Smith, Chairman of the U's Former Players' Association said: "Martyn's sad passing, so soon after his former team mate Duncan Forbes, will be deeply felt by those who knew him, those who watched him play and those who were taught by him after he had become a schoolteacher.

"He was a true gentleman and a very clever one as well! Martyn also played in the first Col U game I watched and he scored the winning goal in the 2-1 victory over Reading; the other Col U goalscorer was Bobby Hunt."

Martyn was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2008, alongside his forward partner Hunt.

The club said the pair "famously forged an unstoppable partnership".

Both he and Hunt scored four goals in Colchester United record 9-1 win against Bradford City in December 1961.

During the Second World War, the Birmingham-born Martyn was evacuated to Yorkshire, where she stayed until 1946, when his family relocated to the Colchester area and he attended local schools.

Going onto be picked for the Essex Grammar Schools team and then the England Public and Grammar Schools team – playing against Scotland in 1956.

By this stage, he had also signed amateur forms with Colchester United and made his Football League debut against Crystal Palace in a 3-3 draw at Layer Road.

His studies continued and he entered University at Oxford, but only staying for 12 months before the lure of football proved too much – although he still played for Oxford against Cambridge in the Varsity match, staged at Wembley in those days.

He joined Courtaulds as a management trainee in October 1957 and served his three-years of National Service in the RAF, regularly representing them in matches.

Despite being in the RAF, Martyn signed professional forms with Colchester United, going on to help them win promotion as Fourth Division runners-up in 1962 – scoring 31 goals that season.

He left Layer Road for north Wales in October 1964, when an exchange deal involving Tecwyn Jones and £3,000 heading to Essex, was agreed.

It was a testing time for the Robins though, as we ended the following season bottom of the Football League in 1966 and while Martyn had recorded 13 goals in 27 league games during 1964/65, his 18 league games in 1965/66 only saw him score twice (although he added six more goals in four cup ties).

He did though record an impressive 26 goals in 56 league and cup appearances for the club.

With a general revamp of the playing staff that summer, Martyn joined big-spending Welsh League North side Porthmadog, playing alongside Mel Charles as they won their title in 1967 and he was the club’s leading scorer.

A knee ligament injury at the start of the 1967/68 season sidelined him and an operation failed to cure the problem, meaning he retired from the game at the age of 31, before going on to start a three-year Teacher’s Training course in Wrexham.

On completing the course, he returned to Essex and a job at his former school Earls Colne Grammar and then later Ramsey School.

In 1988, Martyn moved to the Derby area and worked as a supply teacher, while following his hobby of restoring vintage and classic cars.

We join with Colchester United in passing on our deep sympathies to Martyn’s family and friends at such a sad time.

Martyn King

Martyn scoring for Colchester United (Colchester Daily Gazette)

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