DAVID Rollitt, the only former Barnsley Rugby Union Club player to play for England, has died.

The 79-year-old died last month after a four-year fight with prostate cancer.

He grew up in Wombwell and attended Holgate School while playing for Barnsley.

After attending Bristol University, he had a 13-year stint at Bristol RUFC, playing 415 games.

Rollitt, a forward who could play across the back row, picked up 11 England caps between 1967 and 1975, and played 16 times for the Barbarians, the multi-national invitational team.

He played with and against the likes of Willie John McBride, Barry John and JPR Williams.

In the days before full-time professional rugby, he was also a physics and maths teacher.

He was named captain of an England touring team of South Africa in 1972 but his employers Colstons School refused to release him due to the apartheid system of racial segregation.

After he stopped playing, he was a coach of various teams including Harlequins, London Lebanese RFC and The Gentleman of Aspen in Colorado.

He visited Shaw Lane in October 2015 and opened their ‘rugby hub’.

He told the Chronicle then: “The club has come a long way since I played there and it was a wooden hut and a field in Stairfoot. I remember my time at Barnsley fondly. I played for my school in the morning and then Barnsley in the afternoon.

“Barnsley were instrumental in my selection for a South Yorkshire Seniors trial which helped me on my way to the career I eventually had.”