Romiley, near Stockport, Cheshire born centre forward Frank Newton spent his early years in commission with The South Wales Borderers where he played football, rugby and boxed. On leaving the army, where he had an exceptional goalscoring record in amateur football, he began his football career with Ashton National (now Hyde United) but never played for them, and had trials with Stockport County before joining Welsh League club Pontypridd in 1926. He was signed by hometown Third Division (North) club Stockport County in 1927 and made his Football League debut at Ashington in March 1928, his only appearance in his debut season.
The next season first marked Newton’s emergence as a prolific goalscorer. Coming into The Hatters’ first team at the start of December, he scored braces in each of his first 4 matches, and finished the season with 18 goals in 21 matches, as Stockport narrowly missed out on promotion, finishing runners up in the Third Division (North). The blue touch paper had been lit.
Newton scored 38 goals in as many matches during 1929-30, finishing as the Third Division’s top goalscorer, his tally including 5 goals in a 6-1 win over Nelson in September 1929, 4 goals in a 6-1 win over Rotherham United in March 1930, and trebles in wins over Halifax Town and Doncaster Rovers. Stockport, however, again missed out on promotion, again finishing League runners up. Another prolific season followed in 1930-31, with Newton scoring hat-tricks against Gateshead and Lincoln City to comfortably stay as Stockport’s leading goalscorer with 37 goals in 41 appearances, but at the season end he was sold to Fulham, where his tremendous goalscoring record continued and silverware followed.
In his first season at Craven Cottage Newton bagged a remarkable 47 goals in 44 appearances, still a Fulham club record, including League hat-tricks at Exeter City, Coventry City and Luton Town and an FA Cup treble at Yeovil (oddly all his hat-tricks coming away from home!) and by the time he’d scored his 50th goal for Fulham the following season, he’d taken only three more matches to do so. By then Fulham were in the Second Division, Newton’s goals having propelled them to the Third Division (South) Championship, and a further 27 Newton goals in only 31 games at the higher level saw them just miss out on back to back promotions in 1932-33 as Fulham finished in third, just outside the two automatic promotion places, with Newton again finishing as the club’s leading goalscorer by a distance.
Newton was then sold to Reading in September 1933 having scored a remarkable 76 goals in 83 appearances for Fulham, and he scored on his Royals debut in a win over Southend United, going on to score 27 goals in only 28 games for Reading during the rest of the season including a hat-trick against Luton Town in October, and he was Reading’s leading goalscorer during the campaign. However his career then came to an end in 1934-35.
Having scored 4 goals in 6 matches for Reading, he was allowed to return to Fulham at the start of October having scored 31 goals in only 34 games for Reading, however after a further 5 goals in 9 appearances for Fulham, including 2 goals on his final League appearance in a 4-1 win over Swansea Town. Newton suffered a career ending broken leg in a friendly against FK Austria on that club’s British tour a few days later in December 1934, this proved the end of seven years of Newton terrorising defences, his career total of 205 goals including only 6 penalties and coming in only 223 appearances.
Four of his older brothers also played football professionally.