Hatters Heroes

Luton – The Legends Series – Dave Pacey

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For the latest in our ongoing series covering those who have achieved legendary status among the support, we feature another former Luton figure who became a fans favourite.

Following on from those already covered – John Moore, David Preece, Mal Donaghy, Brian Lewis, Bruce Rioch, Fred Jardine, Brian Horton, Kevin Nicholls, Tony Read, Steve Foster, Mike Keen, Ian Buxton, Lars Elstrup, Peter Anderson, Graham French, Alan West, David Moss, Terry Branston, John Aston, Paul Futcher, John Ryan, Syd Owen, Marvin Johnson, Malcolm MacDonald, Bob Hatton, Steve Buckley,Chris Coyne, Ron Baynham, John Still, Jack Bannister, Ricky Hill, Chris Nicholl, Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu, Don Givens, Gordon Turner, Brian Stein, Jesse Pye, Raddy Antic, Joe Payne, Max Dougan, Alan Slough and Ray Whittaker

In the latest of our ongoing legends series, we’re taking a look at the career of Dave Pacey, as suggested by Tony Byfield.

Earlier on, in this series, when I covered Joe Payne, I mentioned I was of the opinion that Joe held a record I believed might not ever be beaten, with the former striker scoring TEN goals in a single league game, against Bristol Rovers.

Similarly, Dave Pacey is another from our former days who holds a record with Dave being the only scorer in an FA Cup Final for Luton Town, with Dave netting in the 2-1 defeat against Nottingham Forest back in 1959.

It is a record that has been held for some sixty-four years but a record that, I believe, as our club continues to make progress, could one day be broken, if the Hatters reach a Wembley FA Cup Final.

But returning to Dave’s Luton career, his stay at Kenilworth Road began in 1957 with the player being signed after rumours circulated his form had progressed so much that Arsenal were interesting in signing the player.

Dave’s career, at Luton, didn’t get off to the best of starts with the Hatters losing 3-0 at Old Trafford.

However, better things lie ahead with the player going on to make 277 appearances for the club.

But his prowess couldn’t stop Luton slipping down the league ladder into Division 4, Pacey left Luton Town, in 1965 before returning to local football with Kettering Town.

Sadly, Dave Pacey passed away on 06-September-2016, aged 79 years-of-age.

Dave Pacey – Mini Fact File

Name – David Pacey

Date of Birth – 02-October-1936

Place of Birth – Luton, Bedfordshire

Position – Midfielder

Playing Career – Hitchin Town, Luton Town, Kettering Town

If you feel able to share any of your thoughts or memories on the Hatters career of Dave Pacey, please feel free to do so in the comment facility beneath this article.

If you can think of anyone who deserves nominating for coverage in this ongoing series, please drop their name into the comment facility beneath this article.

My thanks go to those who have already nominated faces from the past, they will all be covered, in time.

Next up in the series will be Milija Aleksic as suggested by Chris Winter.


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  • Mike Smith says:

    Dave Pacey was one of the first players I saw play for luton. Very reliable talented player. Going forward how about an article on Ron Davies?

  • Phillip Bassill says:

    The first match I ever saw was the FA Cup Final in 1959. Like many others my Dad could not get a ticket so we hired a television and watched it at home. It was my fifth birthday. Luton lost 2-1. Dave Pacey scored for The Hatters.
    My Dad took me to my first league game on 14th April 1962. Luton lost 2-1 to Sunderland. Dave Pacey scored for The Hatters. No wonder my favourite player was Mr Pacey. In spite of the loss I persuaded my Dad to take me regularly from then on. IN 1974/75 we purchased our first season ticket. 61 years after my first game at Kenilworth Road we’re in the top flight again. COYH.

  • Chris says:

    I believe Dave was amongst a long list of ex Luton players to grace the then Luton League during their winding down from playing professional football. Special times for 16 year old wannabe’s rubbing shoulders with them.

  • Charlie says:

    Dave Pacey was a real hero of mine. I can vividly remember him scoring a great header when the town beat Liverpool 1.0 the season that Liverpool won the 2nd division. Over the tannoy that day it was announced that Roger Hunt had been selected for England for the first time.
    Outside the Kenny end before the match a scouser had a banner written on it were the words ” what happens when the Lord cometh, move St John to inside right”.
    Many memories of Dave, the greatest Gordon Turner , Bob Morton , Ron Baynham and Co when the hatters wore the magical black and white.

  • Tony Byfield says:

    Dave was a really good player who would have succeeded in any era. Always gave 100%, good in defence and had a hard shot.
    I believe he was also a useful golfer.

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