Do you have any interesting, happy, or humorous memories of Sam?
If so, please let us know and we will be happy to share them with the world!
I did some work for the BBC in 2005. I interviewed several survivors in connection with the compilation of the People's War website. One of them was a man called Dawson, who claimed he could have been a professional footballer - possibly 3rd Division - if WWII had not supervised. The fact is it did, and Mr Dawson volunteered for the Army. He trained for the Royal Corps of Signals and subsequently found himself stationed in The Gambia. On arrival, he found there was no football team at his camp, so set about putting one together. Once he thought it ready he threw out a challenge to the lads at the nearby RAF camp, who readily agreed to a match. As Mr. Daswon said, 'As captain of the Army camp's team I arranged to meet up with my opposite number from the RAF.' When the meeting took place, any thoughts of an easy victory over the RAF team quckly evaporated, 'When I saw who it was I nearly dropped through the floor,' said Mr. Dawson. I remembered watching him captain England when they beat Wales at Ayresome Park in 1937. It was none other than Sam Barkas, who was serving in the RAF in the rank of sergeant at the time. Needless to say, Mr. Dawson's worst fears were realised, and the RAF lads, under the guidance of Sam Barkas, emerged victorious.
Around 1978/79 aged 17/18, i was working for a local building company in the Nab Wood shipley area (Bradford) it was a saturday i was desperate for a early finish, (normal finish time around 12 p.m) so that i could watch my beloved Bradford City, anyway around a hour after my hoped for 12 p.m finish i am still there sweeping /tidying up after all differemt tradespeople when a older chap who had heard me saying to these guys 'come on get packed up i have got to go watch t' city (he lived in this house, but i did not know him)
anyway the following 15 minutes live long in my memory .this man had lived mine and millions of others schoolboy dreams.
when he got to the England bit and the captaincy did i believe him? Most definitely not. i had been supporting City 7/8 years and i had never heard of him, anyway time to go and he puts his hand in his pocket and pulls out one of the old pound notes and writes his signature upon it and gives it to me as a gift/tip. i did not realise who i was talking to.
10 years later a little bit older and wiser i read of his demise and thought to myself that at 27 how i would have said forget Bradford City for once pulled acouple of chairs up and said 'Sam start at the very begining and dont miss a word out'