WRESTLING HERITAGE

S: Monty Swan & Terry Swan


Monty Swan


One of the good guys of the ring, with a ready handshake and a smile on his face. That's how we remember Monty Swan of Ellesmere Port. Mind you, there wasn't much of a smile on his face the night we watched him at Preston in the rowdiest match of them all, partnering Bob Bell in a tag team contest against the Outlaw and Dr Death. On other occasions we witnessed dazzling displays of technical brilliance against Mick McMichael and Steve Young.


Monty turned professional in the late 1950s, quickly establishing himself and building up his experience against seasoned pros like Tony Vallon, Don Branch and Chic Purvey. National exposure came along in April, 1960, with a televised match against another up and coming light heavyweight, Tony Charles. The fans immediately took to Monty, and he was back on their screens the following month, against Bob Steele, and shortly afterwards opposing Dean Stockton. He was to appear on tv around twenty times over the next few years. One advertised televised match that didn't take place was in May, 1962, when he was scheduled to face Jackie Pallo on Cup Final day. At the eleventh hour promoters Dale Martin substituted Monty with Mick McManus, thus setting up the first of the televised grudge matches of all time. 


Never afraid of travelling Monty worked for all members of the Joint Promotion organisation. It was Dale Martin Promotions that gave him his first British championship opportunity, against Tommy Mann at Swindon in October, 1960. Weighing around thirteen and a half stones Monty was well placed to face a range of opponents from athletic middleweights like Bobby Steele to fully blown heavyweights such as Johnny Yearsley. Whoever the opponent, fast and skilful or heavy and thuggish, Monty had the skills to deal with them all and entertain the fans. 


Highlight of his career, we would guess, was the night he faced Les Kellett at the Royal Albert Hall in London. In 1970 Monty left Joint Promotions and began working for the independent promoters. He was one of a number of Joint Promotion men, Count Bartelli, Syed Saif Shah and Roy Bull Davis being others, who made the move at this time to work for a new young promoter, Brian Dixon, whom he had known for many years since the time Brian was a second at Liverpool Stadium. 


Monty continued working throughout the country for the independents until the mid 1970s, working for Brian Dixon, Taylor & Allan, Jack Cassidy and numerous other opposition men. Eddie Rose recalls working with Monty, "He was always good fun to travel with and to work with and had a lot to offer by way of in-car entertainment with his funny stories about wrestling and the characters he had encountered. He always aspired to be a heavyweight like his mate Bob Bell but never quite managed it despite intensive weight training. He declared that the only thing he got for all the hard work was bigger breasts!" 


For many years Monty helped Bob Bell with the organisation of the Northern reunion in Ellesmere Port before moving to Scotland where at the time of writing he still lives.


Terry Swan (Terry Quinn)


1970s Ellesmere Port wrestler and brother of Monty Swan. In later tears Terry used the name Terry Quinn and tagged with Mighty John Quinn, billed as the Canadian's brother.


Page added 21/03/2022