Jack Dunnett

John Jacob Dunnett (24 June 1922 – 26 October 2019) was a British Labour Party politician, solicitor, and football club chairman.[1] He died in London in October 2019 at the age of 97.[2][3]

Early life and politicsEdit

Dunnett was educated at Whitgift Middle School, Croydon, and Downing College, Cambridge, studying law. He served in World War II in the forces, first in as another rank in the Royal Fusiliers and then in the Cheshire Regiment from June 1941 – December 1946, reaching the rank of Captain. He took part in the invasion of Italy in September 1943 at Salerno. He was wounded in action near Cassino. After the war he returned to Cambridge, took his degree, and then qualified as a solicitor. He served as a councillor on Middlesex County Council 1958–61 and on Enfield Borough Council 1958–61, serving as an alderman until 1963. He was elected to the Greater London Council in 1964.

Dunnett was elected at the 1964 general election as Member of Parliament for Nottingham Central and held the seat until it was abolished in boundary changes for the 1974 election. He was then returned for the new Nottingham East constituency until the 1983 General Election in which he did not stand. The seat then fell to the Conservatives. He had been elected to Parliament 6 times.


Dunnett was Chairman of Brentford Football Club.[4] In January 1967, following poor gates, he discussed a merger with Jim Gregory of Queens Park Rangers of the two clubs.[4] This move threatened Brentford's independence and a consortium of businessmen and supporters of Brentford bought out Dunnett's shares to stave off proposed merger.[5][6] Subsequently, Queens Park Rangers won promotion to the First Division and then to the Premier League.

Dunnett was Chairman of Notts County from 1967, financing the club's regular annual losses by making interest free loans from his company, Park Street Securities. The Club paid a low rent to their landlords who were Nottingham Council. Dunnett inaugurated a fund-rasing scheme "life line" in 1986. Then in 1987, he stood down as Director and sold all his shares to Derek Pavis, completely severing his connection with the club.[2] Under Dunnett's chairmanship, the club reached the then First Division, surviving for three years albeit with poor gates.[2][7]

Dunnett was elected President of the Football League 1981–1986 and 1988–89, and was Vice-President of the Football Association for the same period. He was a member of the Football Association's Executive Committee at the time of the Hillsborough disaster.[8]


  1. ^ Obituaries, Telegraph (30 October 2019). "Jack Dunnett, solicitor, MP and property developer who served as president of the Football League during turbulent times for the game – obituary" – via www.telegraph.co.uk.
  2. ^ a b c Slater, Colin. "Jack Dunnett". www.nottscountyfc.co.uk. Retrieved 30 October 2019.
  3. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/football/2019/nov/14/jack-dunnett-obituary?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other
  4. ^ a b "Jack Dunnett 1922–2019". www.brentfordfc.com. Retrieved 30 October 2019.
  5. ^ "A brief history of Brentford Football Club". Brentford FC. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  6. ^ "The Brentford Take-Over Saga". Vital QPR. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  7. ^ https://www.nottinghampost.com/sport/football/football-news/xxxx-3481426 Dunnet Chairman of Notts
  8. ^ "The Football Association Executive Committee" (PDF). Hillsborough Enquiry. Retrieved 1 March 2017.

External linksEdit

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
John Cordeaux
Member of Parliament for Nottingham Central
1964Feb. 1974
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Nottingham East
Feb. 19741983
Succeeded by
Michael Knowles