P: Pablo - Parky
Wrestling Heritage A-Z
What is it about wrestling and gypsies. We had Pedro the Gypsy, Gypsy Benito, Gino the Gypsy and at least three of Pablo The Gyspy. Of course the one thing they had in common was that none of them were actually gypsies. Do not confuse any of our Pablo trio with Pedro the Gypsy, he was Gordon Allen and a different person.
Just one of our Pablo collection had the distinction of a few years of Joint Promotions work in the mid sixties. He even made it on to the cover of The Wrestler magazine and was seen four times on television.
Working for Joint Promotions was Pablo de Aluarez who came from Worcestershire. Presumably he was the one featured on the cover of The Wrestler magazine.
Please get in touch if you can provide more information
For the independent promoters there was another Pablo from Yorkshire, Tony Kaye remembers, "I wrestled him a few times, the one from Bradford that is. A good lad and a pleasure to work with. It was said that he was the uncle to one of a pop group from Bradford." Please get in touch if you can provide more information
Please get in touch if you can provide more information
It was Wrestling Heritage member Barry Smith who alerted us to the existence of a third Pablo. This Pablo was from Snodland, a small town in Kent. His name was Bob Bartholomew, and by his own admission he wrestled only a handful of times, always using the name Pablo.
Bob worked with wrestler Peter Gurr in a cement works, Peter being a lorry mechanic and Bob working in the stores. Bob had been a big wrestling fan for many years, Jim Breaks being his favourite. It was Peter who suggested that Bob took up wrestling. Peter trained him, gave him the name Pablo and introduced Bob to Danny Lynch who was promoting at the time.
It was 1970 and the new Pablo wrestled only a handful of matches before deciding his heart wasn't really in the performance side of the sport. It's outside the ring that Bob Bartholomew has made his mark. As he is added to the A-Z in 2016 Bob is still working behind the scenes for promoters in the south. He also authored a book, "Top of the Bill," about wrestling at the Royal Albert Hall between 1972 and 1982.
Activity suggests a Midlands based middleweight of 1961-62, though we do have a record of working in the North East for Don Robinson. . We would like further information.
Please get in touch if you can provide more information
Son of wrestler Johnny Mack this Liverpudlian was one of the under-rated men of the golden era, failing to receive the recognition he deserved from the major promoters.
In the 1960s and 1970s Joint Promotions expected their wrestlers to work exclusively for themselves and readily stopped bookings for those who had the audacity to accept simultaneous bookings for the opposition promoters. Some wrestlers tried working their way around these restrictions and, if memory serves us right, that is how Johnny Palance became a man with two names, using the name Johnny Locke in Joint Promotion rings.
With a background in boxing, and trained in the submission style favoured by Lancashire wrestlers Johnny was a tenacious and hard wrestler, "A great wrestler, who did not get the credit he deserved for his great moves in the ring," Eddie Rose told Wrestling Heritage. We saw Johnny wrestle for independent promoter s in the early 1970s and always found him good value for money.
Did not seem to be given much of a push after crossing to Joint Promotions and was sacrificed to Wonderboy Steve Wright in what we believe was his only televised match. Johnny's skills did seem more appreciated by promoter Brian Dixon and many fans recall great matches with Kung Fu Eddie Hamill. Graham Brook recalls: "I knew him as Johnny Locke and it was Orig Williams I believe who began billing him as Johnny Palance due to his physical resemblance to Jack Palance. I used to attend Orig's shows at The Town Hall, Rhyl, regularly and recall Johnny having great bouts with Jackie Pallo, Adrian Street, Eddie Hammil and others."
Maybe disillusioned with the British scene in 1981 Johnny travelled to Canada, working for Stu Hart's Stampede Promotions, where he used yet another name, Jake Foley!
When we first came across Harry Palin in the independent halls of the 1960s the youngster did stand out from the run of the mill independent supporting men.
Maybe that was hardly surprising as the Widnes middleweight came from the gymnasium of old-timer Ted Betley, who had already unleashed Wonderboy Steve Wright on an unsuspecting wrestling public.
Whilst Wright's acrobatic style had caught the imagination of young fans Harry Palin was from a different mould. He had a much harder edge, appreciated by Lancashire fans, relying on a thorough wrestling knowledge combined with strength developed through his rigorous weight training regime.
Mainly working around the midlands, north and Scotland Harry was signed up by Joint Promotions where he was a regular worker for many years, with half a dozen televised bouts to his credit.
He also bestowed his son, Dave Duran, on a grateful wrestling public. The photo on the right shows Harry with a young Dave.
Controversial and cocky, but much loved by most true fans, Jackie Pallo had a glittering career spanning the Golden Years of British professional wrestling.
In a long-running feud he played the Cliff Barnes character to Mick McManus's JR Ewing. But he topped bills all over the country over many years and had the greatest national celebrity status of all wrestlers in the swinging sixties.
He appeared in Emergency Ward Ten, Are You Being Served?, and a host of other popular tv shows, was a regular pantomime dame, cut records, had both fashion labels and even a racehorse named after him, and even found time to wrestle his way to a British Championship title.
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Jackie Pallo Junior (Solitaire)
JJ had one of the hardest acts imaginable to follow when he started appearing as a professional wrestler in the early seventies. Initially he wrestled solely in tag alongside his illustrious father and we all waited to see how his in-ring personality would develop. This pairing was an instant bill-topper nationwide for about a year and climaxed in the inevitable clash with McManus & Logan at London's Royal Albert Hall.
Soon solo appearances started and he was billed as "a chip off the old block", but was fixed firmly in preliminary bouts. Circumstances then swiftly dictated that he would be appearing on the independent circuit, where his first two names roared out loud and unclear from posters, with the Junior misleadingly appended only underneath in the smallest of type. He filled his dad's boots in that he had the same wrestling gear, but as long as Senior was around we were all left in no doubt that this was a very Junior family member indeed.
In fairness we cannot comment on his late eighties work as we did not witness it. He never returned to Joint Promotions. For a brief time he wrestled as the masked Solitaire before handing the hood over to his friend Steve Serene. JJ can regularly be seen on the frequent television airings of the prison movie "Porridge" as he was one of two wrestlers featured fairly prominently.
Read our extended tribute: A Chip Off The Old Block
Mostly remembered by fans as one of Dale Martin Promotions top referees and dapper M.C. Bobby Palmer had a previous life as a professional wrestler.
He was born in Bow, London, on 21st October, 1914, but spent much of his youth in Brighton, learning to wrestle at the Brighton and Hove Athletic Club. In 1936 Bobby became a steward on the passenger liner, The Orford,
As a young lightweight Bobby gained initial success, including a visit to Australia, before his career was interrupted by service as a parachutist in the R.A.F during the war. Bobby resumed wrestling following the end of the war and continued his career for a dozen more years before turning to refereeing.
When not in the ring Bobby worked as a film stuntman, was an antiques dealer and car delivery manager.
As a referee, and later Master of Ceremonies, dapper Bobby brought dignity to occasions that would otherwise have been less so and helped to build the credibility of the wrestling days we celebrate on these pages. He died on 26th January, 1999, aged 84.
Flore Alfred Joseph Pantobe was born on 24th November, 1915 in the French overseas territory of Guadleoupe, a Caribbean island in the Leeward islands.
He was a successful professional boxer before turning to wrestling, where he was a big name in France and Spain.
The tall and muscular Jim Pantobe came to Britain in 1951 and again in 1952 with opponents that included Jim Armstrong, Bert Assirati, Ernie Baldwin, and Bill Verna.
After retiring from the ring Jim Pantobe continued living in France and became an optician in Paris.
A Greek technician who was a favourite of Greek fans around the world.
Hold and counter hold was the style of this technician who visited the UK during the winter of 1963-4 whilst claiming the World Junior Heavyweight Championship.
He came to Britain following tours of France, Germany, Lebanon, Australia and the United States.
The Wrestler magazines assertion that he had remained undefeated for ten years seemed less than credible as he notched up a sequence of British defeats, not just against the usual suspects Georges Gordienko, Bill Robisnon and Josef Zaranoff but against lesser lights that included Johnny Czeslaw. Con Papalazarou is shown being body slammed by Dazzler Joe Cornelius.
In the early 1950s a rumbustious heavyweight hit the British wrestling circuit, clashing with top class opposition such as Count Bartelli, Jack Atherton and Ernest Baldwin. He was certainly something of a hard nut because on many occasions he ventured where so many others feared to tread and was remembered for some great bouts with the legendary Bert Assirati. Papini accompanied Assirati to India during his 1953 tour. He was reputed to be a very hard man and a difficult opponent who was very hard to handle.
The craggy faced Darlington heavyweight was active for Joint Promotions during an intensive three-year period from 1969 before, like so many before and after him, he disappeared abruptly and without trace. Well that's how it seemed to us, but if Ray would like to let us know otherwise please get in touch.
Born in 1940, Ray was an amateur boxer who later turned to wrestling and enrolling at the Gladstone Street Youth centre in Darlington.
In his early twenties Ray turned his attention to making a bit of money from his talent and decided there was no better way to learn the rougher rudiments of the professional ring than follow in the footsteps of Bull Davis, Kincaid and many others; dedicating 4½ years to learning the trade in fairground wrestling and boxing booths.
He then graduated to independent promotions on his way to meeting Judo Pete Roberts at the Royal Albert Hall in 1971 and other top heavyweights such as Gwyn Davies, Tibor Szakacs, Wayne Bridges and Rocky Wall in Joint Promotion rings.
The muscular Billy Parky came into the 1960s wrestling scene after winning the Mr Britain competition, under his real name of Bill Parkinson.
The Mancunian used his formidable strength to his advantage, but never really hit the big time in wrestling circles.