Tommy Prest played for Tuckhole’s FC in the Blackburn League leaving St Cuthbert’s School, but quickly progressed to a higher grade of football with his local side Darwen in the Lancashire Combination where his natural talent soon attracted the bigger clubs. In January 1930 the slightly-built forward signed for Burnley, and went on to score fifteen goals in 80 First and Second Division appearances over five seasons at Turf Moor before joining the Albion in June 1935.
Described as an individual ball-artist, Tommy occupied all the attacking positions except centre-forward in his two seasons at the Goldstone, although he was generally preferred at inside-left. Transferred to Aldershot in June 1937, he joined Rochdale in September 1938 for the last season before the outbreak of the Second World War. Tommy was also an accomplished club cricketer.