This interesting comment came from Ex Parkside Player Ernest Lundy

“Like dear old Harry, (a man far more distinguished than myself), my wife and I also visited Capri in 1973 and 80, but never saw Gracie, who on our first visit was still alive. After husband Monty died she did I believe marry her then chauffeur, with whom she remained until her death. As for me, I was too busy trying to cover my gap-toothed mouth after chewing on a hard apple and breaking my dental plate while being rowed around the Blue Grotto. Also visiting Pompeii for the third time, my first being as cabin boy on a merchant ship in 1944, while Vesuvius was erupting.

Remarkably, although rugby league supporters are everywhere, I met a chap named Harrison, from the East End Park district, who told me he supported Hunslet, and pleaded with me,on my return, to call on his family in the Charlton’s and tell them he was fine.

Visiting Pompeii for the third time, my first as a cabin boy in the merchant navy in 1944 while Vesuvius was erupting, there were many colourful murals and statues in that fascinating place, but none which, so far as I could see, had much to do with the oval ball. Although there were plenty of others that would raise a few eyebrows if they were put on show in Leeds, which nevertheless were being photographed with gusto by women of the American forces.

Wonder if Harry saw them ? One of them would make even Gracie’s aspidistra pale into insignificance in comparison.

There is or rather was, a connection with Italy and Rugby League insofar as an old friend Bill Lawrenson, one time Leeds Estate agent was injured in or around Naples in the last war, and Lieutenant Oliver Morris , the Leeds half-back, formerly of Hunslet RL was killed around that area.
I remember him lodging in a house on Cotton Mill Row, not far from the “Prossie”, and was told by those in the know that had he lived, with his potential he would have become a Rugby League Great. Like many others he was a sad loss to the game, as were the best years others lost to the war.”

Footnote to Ernest’s comment- from Old Mother Benson

A Pre war Hooker for Hunslet Billy Thompson’s brother Fred was killed on Rimini Ridge in Italy- Fred had been an Assistant Trainer to the Hunslet teams prior to the war.
He was also an Uncle of Stuart Keane.

THANKS FOR ALL THE INFO ERNEST– Keep it Coming