Date: 28th January 2010 at 10:34am
Written by:

An ex-Vice Chairman of Rotherham United has died aged eighty-two.

Lewis Purshouse helped his father, Eric, run the club throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s and the clubs firm financial base was the envy of most in the Football League.

Lewis, at the age of eighteen, was given the job, by his father, to contact individual shareholders of the time in a view to increasing the number of shares held by the board of directors. For his trouble, Lewis, who had supported the Millers from boyhood, was given one hundred and sixty shares of his own. He continued to buy shares when he could and in the 1950’s he became the largest individual shareholder and was invited onto the Board. He was given special responsibility for ground development (I wonder what he’d have thought of yesterday’s news) and in 1965 was appointed Vice-Chairman.

Lewis was instigator of the club’s lottery, which was one of the first within the Football League and, under his supervision, the Windmill Club was built (which later became the Tivoli Club).

In October 1967, the Purshouse’s brought Tommy Docherty to the club as Manager.

At an Award Ceremony in the 70’s, Bill Shankly greeted Lewis by shaking his hand and saying, ‘How nice to see an honest man.’

The Purshouse association with the Millers finally ended in 1979 when, after vicious and personal abuse from suppporters, they sold the club, which at the time was well in the black, to Anton Johnson.

The funeral will take place on Friday.

Vital Rotherham send our condolences to Lewis’s family