ahudgells home page

Arthur Hudgell


1920 - 2000


Hackney North London




Sunderland and Crystal Palace



Arthur John Hudgell



Arthur John Hudgell was born in Hackney North London son of Albert Hudgell, East London on 28th December 1920.


     At the age of 17 in December937 he signed for Crystal Palace Football Club from Eton Manor a well-known Junior Club that spawned a number of professional footballers.     

Arthur apparently walked into Selhurst Park asking for any job with Crystal Palace, “even cleaning weeds as I want to play for Palace”.




     Hackney Schools Eton Manor

Crystal Palace December 1937 debut against Blackburn Rovers Sunderland February 1947January 1947 for the sum of £10,000


   The record books state that Arthur did not play for Crystal Palace until 1946 but that was due to the Second World War, certainly he did not play for the first team before September 1939.   However wartime football leagues were set up which consisted of clubs within a local area to reduce travelling etc. and in those troubled times and clubs were allowed to field ‘guest’ players which in effect was any footballer in the area who was available to play. For example Aldershot had (naturally) one of the strongest teams at that time.


  Arthur's playing position with Crystal Palace was usually at left-half or left full-back and it was at left-half (No.6 shirt) that he made his first team debut for Crystal Palace for one of these wartime regional league fixtures at home at (Selhurst Park) to Watford on Saturday 28th October 1939.


   Arthur was a regular player for Palace during the Second World War but I have no record as to how he was involved military or otherwise during this period.   A clue may be that he did not appear in the team from October 1942 until August 1944 apart from 6/3/1943. It could be that he was involved in the War effort somewhere else in England and was playing for another club.  Arthur’s wartime career with Crystal Palace totalled 174 appearances and he scored 7 goals, some of these from the penalty spot.


   The F.A. Cup competition resumed in 1945 but League Football did not recommence until August 1946, hence Arthur’s recorded first team debut with Palace is in the F.A. Cup game against Queens Park Rangers at their ground on January 5th 1946, a tie that involved two replays.


    In the first post-war season of League Football (1946-7) Palace competed in Division Three South and Arthur was ever-present in the team from the start and he played for Palace in a F.A. Cup-tie at Newcastle United on January 11th 1947. Although Palace lost 2-6 there were some football scouts present and those from Sunderland were sufficiently impressed with his play for the Wearside team to make an offer of £10,000 to Crystal Palace for his signature.


     This incidentally was a then record for a Third Division player and also for a full-back. Palace accepted and Arthur’s last game for the club was on 25th January 1947, coincidentally at Queens Park Rangers. Arthur’s official career with Palace totalled 25 League games (scoring 1 goal) and 4 F.A. Cup appearances (wartime appearances do not count in the official record books).

     He cost Sunderland what was then a record transfer fee for a defender but it was certainly money well spend on a solid player who became an often unsung stalwart of a Sunderland side containing some outstanding individuals.

 Arthur had played in the same boys club team as Ivor Broadis and could fill the right-back position most capably.

He was 5'9 inches tall and weighed 11st 13Ibs at the height of his career and he wore the No. 3 shirt.


       His Sunderland career lasted from January 1947 until May 1956 when he retired from football with a total of 260 League games for the Wearsiders.  He missed Sunderland’s famous defeat at Yeovil in 1949 in the F.A. Cup.

   Arthur was described as a stylish, fair-haired full-back he was Jack Stelling's partner for seven years.  He made no pre-war senior appearances for Crystal Palace being still only 18 when war broke out, but he stayed with them for 10 years, but did so in wartime.  His peacetime 1946/47 figures for the Glaziers were 25 Southern Section outings (One goal) plus one in the FA Cup.

Hudgell - 1947-1957


Arthur Hudgell was a cockney who came to Sunderland after spending 10 years at Crystal Palace. A stylish left-back, Hudgell arrived at Roker for £10,000, a record fee for a defender. This huge amount certainly proved value for money though, as Hudgell went on to make 274 appearances for the Lads. Hudgell’s worth to the team was undoubtedly overshadowed by more exciting individuals who inevitably grabbed the limelight. Among his team-mates Hudgell could count Len Shackleton, Stan Anderson and Trevor Ford.


     He retired 1958 ..........





McLain  Stelling  R.Robinson  Hudgell Wright  Duns

 J.Robinson  Hall(Capt)  Whitelum  Quinn  Burbanks


Sunderland Football Team


Kurz, Guthrie, Lewis, Graham, Hudgell, Bassett,

Girling, Lewis, Dawes, Naylor, Robson.




Crystal Palace v  Cardiff City

23rd November 1946




Sport Newspaper, Dec 1951

Sunderland Team of 1951 - 1952

T. MCcain. J.Sterling. F.Hall. J.Mapson. A. Hudgell. A.Wright. L. Duns. H. Kirtley. W. Watson. T. Ford. L. Shackleton.

Sport Newspaper

Sunderland FC 1948 -1949

Back Row Ramsden, Shackleton, Hudgell, Mapson, Scotson, Wright.  -  Front Row :- Duns, Davis, Hall, Turnbull, Robinson, Watson


Newcastle & Sunderland's 100 Greatest Footballers





Malcolm Macdonald Newcastle United
2 Harry Hooper Sunderland
3 Bob Moncur Newcastle Utd. & Sunderland
4 Len Ashurst  Sunderland
5 Peter Withe Newcastle United
6 Billy Elliott Sunderland
7 Hughie Gallacher Newcastle United
8 Arthur Hudgell Sunderland
9 Jimmy Lawrence  Newcastle United
10 Joe Bolton  Sunderland
11 Alf McMichael  Newcastle United
12 Barry Siddall Sunderland
13 George Robledo Newcastle United
14 Dickie Davis  Sunderland
15 Ronnie Simpson   Newcastle United
16 George Herd Sunderland
17 Jimmy Scoular Newcastle United
18 Benny Yorston  Sunderland
19 Ernie Taylor  Newcastle United
20 Tommy Wright Sunderland
21 ..........onwards  


Thanks to Sunderland Football Club for all

the information they have



Match report:






Crystal Palace v Watford

October 28th 1939

Kick-off 3 p.m.

Official programme


and news reports in


The Times for the F. A. Cup 1951


Wikipedia on Arthur Hudgell http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Hudgell


Thanks very much to Ian King for the permission

to use his pictures and programmes



Site Content © 2002 - Present   Pamela L. Bishop. All rights reserved


Newest update 07/01/2022 13:06



















'Congratulations on a wonderful family history presentation.

I just "googled" on the off chance, and struck gold!....................

Jean Potter