Edwin “Ned” Neve joined the Tigers in May 1906 to provide backup for City’s regular outside left Gordon Wright. Neve was born in Prescot, a town located between Liverpool and St Helens that was well known for its clock and watch making industry. Neve’s father worked in the watch making industry, then later worked in cable manufacturing after the timepiece industry crashed in 1910. Ned worked as a general labourer as a young man and late in 1905 he joined Lancashire Combination side St Helens Recreation. His form for the Recs was good enough to attract the attention of the Tigers, who signed him alongside St Helens’ goalkeeper Ed Roughley and striker Walter Dagnall.
Gordon Wright was an England international footballer, being his understudy was therefore a thankless task and for four seasons Neve played occasionally when Wright was unavailable due to his engineering studies. Ned scored his first goal for City in March 1907, a consolation in a 1-2 defeat at Nottingham Forest, and added two more goals in the closing weeks of the 1906/07 season. In February 1910 Wright began an extended absence and Neve successfully established himself as a worthy first team player with good creative skills and the ability to score occasional goals. The left wing berth was shared between Neve and Wright during the 1910/11 and 1911/12 seasons and Ned’s talents were sufficient to attract the attention of First Division clubs during the 1912 close season.
In August 1912 Ned signed for Derby County, with a substantial fee being paid. In his first season with the Rams Neve started 18 League games and 1 Cup game, scoring his first and only top flight goal in December 1912 against Bradford City. Neve was a regular starter in 1913/14 season but Derby struggled and were relegated. Having made 49 starts for the Rams, Neve left Derby County in June 1914 and joined Second Division rivals Nottingham Forest. He spent one season at the City Ground before World War One drew a close to senior football in May 1915 with his best season as a professional, scoring four goals in 37 starts.
Neve played in two wartime fixtures for Chesterfield early in 1916 before he was conscripted to war service and joined the Royal Garrison Artillery. He suffered gas poisoning during the conflict and served in the Army of Occupation until his demobilisation at the end of 1919. His poor health meant he was unable to resume playing football, he therefore became a brewer’s traveller based in Derby. In August 1920 he suffered a heart attack caused by the damage done by gas poisoning and died in his Derby base, returning to Prescot for his burial.
Date/Place of Birth: 3 May 1885, Prescot
Hull City First Game: 8 September 1906, Clapton Orient H (Division Two), 21 years, 128 days old
Hull City Final Game: 20 April 1912, Clapton Orient H (Division Two), 26 years, 353 days old
St Helens Recreation (1905-1906), Hull City (1906-1912), Derby County (1912-1914), Nottingham Forest (1914-1915)
Hull City Record
Career: 104 apps, 12 goalsNed Neve