Haswell, County Durham born winger Tommy Urwin played junior football for Fulwell in 1911, Lambton Star in 1912 and Shildon Athletic in 1913, from where he signed for First Division Middlesbrough in May 1914, with Urwin making his Football League debut against Sunderland on New Year’s Day 1915. He scored his first goal that April in a 4-1 victory over Oldham Athletic but the First World War brought his career to a temporary halt after only 7 appearances.
During the War Urwin served as a gunner in The Royal Field Artillery and saw action at Gallipoli and in India. With the conflict over, Urwin returned to Ayresome Park and soon established himself as a mainstay of the Boro first eleven, but after they were relegated in 1924 he left to join Newcastle United for £3,200 having scored 14 goals in exactly 200 appearances.
He was first selected to play for England while still at Middlesbrough in March 1921 against Wales but was a non playing reserve, and had to wait until the post season tour to Sweden in May 1923 to win his first two caps both in Stockholm. He also played that November as England drew with Belgium in Antwerp. He also made one appearance for The Football League.
At Newcastle he soon became a first team regular and was recalled to the England team in March 1926 playing in a defeat to Wales at Selhurst Park in what would prove his final England cap. He missed only 3 games as they won the League Championship in 1926-27, enjoying six seasons at St James’ Park, scoring 24 goals in exactly 200 appearances. Sunderland signed him in February 1930 for £525 and although he only played 8 more games after he lost his place in 1931, he continued with them to his retirement in 1936 scoring 6 goals in 55 appearances. Urwin is one of only a handful of players to have played for all three major north east clubs.
NB in the photograph Urwin is tackled by Oldham Athletic defender Harry Grundy in a match between Middlesbrough and Oldham in either 1922 or 1923.