Just read the obituary for Laurie Topp, who died yesterday. The comment that “legend” is an overused word is absolutely right, but there is no doubt that Laurie Topp was a Hendon legend. He was generally recognised across the game as the best amateur footballer in the country.
Laurie retired many years before I started watching Hendon, but those who had the pleasure of seeing him play all praised him to the heavens. When Peter Lush and I were working on the club’s history a decade or so ago, we went to interview him. Already well into his 80s, Laurie had lost interest in football almost 50 years earlier – within a few years of his playing retirement. His recollections, although hazy in many places, were fascinating but I was particularly taken by his collection of memorabilia – indicative of his disinterest in football – kept in black rubbish bags. To hold England and Great Britain amateur caps and medals was amazing.
Rest in Peace, Laurie Topp, Hendon Legend
Re: Laurie Topp
R.I.P. Laurie. I was priviliged as a kid to see Laurie play and remember him as a fine footballer and a great team man, who along with his team mate Bill Fisher gave everything for Hendon FC over a footballing lifetime. I think that the club should honour these two stalwarts in some way, either in the ground or the clubhouse.
Re: Laurie Topp
I too grew up watching the great Laurie Topp playing for Hendon.
While he was one of the greatest amateur footballers of his era, he perhaps shared that honour with the great Bobby Hardisty of Bishop Auckland. Both were picked, I believe, for the 1956 Olympic football team.
It is said that when the great Matt Busby was recovering from the Munich air crash, when so many Manchester United players were lost, he instructed his assistant, "Get me Bobby Hardisty"
Two great players. R.I.P. Laurie