WRESTLING HERITAGE

British wrestling history          
has a name     
    
Heritage


F: Faichney - Faulkner

 Wrestling Heritage A-Z


Duncan Faichney
A newcomer to the welterweight ranks in the mid sixties whose initial promise failed to materialise. Perth born Faichney trained at the Barbush Amateur Wrestling Club, Dunblane, before making his professional debut against fellow Scot, Bill Ross, and beating him by the odd fall. Duncan's wrestling was restricted mostly to Scotland which must have limited his potential national fame.

Duncan was a late starter in the professional ranks, nearing thirty years old as he was born in 1937. He did, though, bring experience in the Highland Games

Frequent opponents included fellow Scots Bill Ross, Jim Elder and Jim McKenzie in addition to marauding visitors from the south such as Peter Preston and Mick McMichael.  

After retiring from wrestling Duncan worked as a postman, retiring in 2002.

Baron Faieta (Ed Gardenia)
His long, curly hair was the source of the self styled Baron Gardenia's strength according to the wrestling publicity machine; an angle that seemed reminiscent of one first used over 2,000 years earlier.The Italian-American heavyweight visited Britain in the 1950s and 1960s. He arrived in  Europe having already built up an international reputation throughout North America and the Pacific in the 1940s and 1950s. A flamboyant character he contrasted sharply with the more monochrome domestic talent with whom fans were more familiar. . Unsurprisingly, a villain of the ring who did little to endear himself as he handed out flowers to the ungrateful lady fans on the way to the ring. Following a successful international wrestling career Gardenia went on to work in films.

Peter Falcon
Wrestlefan brought to our attention Gloucestershire's Roy Harley, who started wrestling in the mid 1960s and wrestled as Peter Falcon in the West Country.  Roy was a well respected trainer of young wrestlers and NagaskisNo1Fan told us that Danny Collins, Richie Brooks, Jeff Kerry, and Peter Collins had all benefited from his knowledge. Roy also promoted wrestling, and as late as 2015 we found him promoting a charity wrestling show. We discovered that in 2012 Roy started a business called Stunt Stage, training stunt actors for work in films. We would like to know more

Shaun Falcon
See the entry for Shaun lavery

Guy Falla
Guy Falla was born in New Maldon, Surrey, on 9th August, 1910. To say that he led a full life would be something of an understatement – naval officer, boxer, rugby player, ships steward, physical training instructor, journalist; goodness knows how he found any time to wrestle. Wrestle he did, though, for a few years in the second half of the 1930s, and with some success. 

Prior to wrestling Guy served in the Royal Navy. He represented the Navy in boxing and rugby matches, later going on to play rugby professionally as a forward with Moseley near Birmingham, spurring on his team mates with the battlecry “Blood for supper.”  

Guy Falla left the Navy in January, 1933. Two years later we find him wrestling  in the West country. The Devonport Express met the biggest names in the business, including Bulldog Bill Garnon, Swiss Champion Guilaume Estelles, Ray St Bernard and Dave Armstrong, and beat most of them. His career was short lived as Guy took to the seas once again and became a physical training instructor on cruise ships belonging to White Star Lines. By 1938 he was back on land, living in Birmingham and playing rugby for Moseley. We later find him playing for Northampton and Cardiff.

In March 1945 Lieutenant-Colonel Guy Falla was awarded the O.B.E. for gallant and distinguished services  in North-West Europe.

Guy Falla died in 1961.

Jack Fallon (The Destroyer)
A legitimate sport marketed with entertainment principles inevitably resulted in a world of contradictions and dichotomies. Those with an ability to entertain and impress the fans were often not the ones respected and admired by wrestling colleagues, and vice versa. Which brings us to one of the great Lancashire catch wrestlers of the post-war era. Well that's the view of those wrestlers who knew Jack Fallon. Sadly as far as the fans were concerned it was a different story. Jack Fallon was a stocky mid heavyweight of the sixties and seventies whose style never caught their  imaginations.  Even pulling on a mask and calling himself The Destroyer was not enough to propel Jack to the big time and he was destined to remain a supporting wrestler throughout his career. Such are the injustices of the world. The truth was that Fallon was a very underrated wrestler whose name could justifiably be ranked alongside Riley, Dempsey, Joyce, Robinson and any other legitimate Lancashire wrestler. He was an extremely tough and rugged man who had learned the trade the hard way in the Lancashire style. 

Much respected by his fellow wrestlers he could have done many of them a great deal of damage if that had been the name of the game. Fallon, real name Billy Chambers, ran his own gymnasium and wrestling training school in Wigan, and the many fans should be grateful to him for his influence on so many of our young wrestlers, particularly  one of the most successful of them all, Tommy Billington, The Dynamite Kid. Jack Fallon died on 26th August, 2010, aged 74, the husband of Dorothy, and father of William, Kevin, Marie, Anthony. 

The Farmer (George Broadfield, Farmers Boy)
The roots of professional wrestling lay in the countryside; it was only during the “Golden Age” at the beginning of the twentieth century that the likes of Georges Hackenschmidt, Tom Cannon and Jack Carkeek made wrestling a fashionable night out for the city folk.  In British wrestling rings the name “The Farmer” or “Farmers Boy” is synonymous with one man, and that man is George Broadfield. George came from farming stock in Yorkshire, near Dewsbury. 

Agricultural work built up the power to execute a fearsome elbow slam that could knock out an opponent and earned him the title “KO King.” Not that wrestling was his first love. As a youngster rugby was his favourite sport. In his mid teens George took up wrestling, and took to the sport like the proverbial fish to water. 

Promoter George DeRelwyskow (Sr.) was impressed by the young amateur and offered him professional work. George weighed around fourteen stones at the time and was soon facing some of the top lighter heavyweights. He was a professional from the 1930s, the days of all-in wrestling who continued his career following the Second World War under the newly introduced Lord Mountevans rules. Shortly after the war George had a long run of matches with Bert Assirati, at a time the Islington Hercules was at his best and avoided by many wrestlers. George found championship success at the highest level, claiming the World Mid heavyweight title from 1947 until 1949. George was the older, and heavier, brother of Harry Fields. A Yorkshireman through and through George even persuaded Ireland's Frank O'Donnell to move to the county. 

Farmer's Boy
See the entries for The Farmer, Harry Fields, Gordon Renton, Pete Ross and Greg Valentine. 

Jim Farrell
Dundee's Jim Farrell was a popular light heavyweight of the 1960s, both in singles combat and as tag partner of fellow Scot Tom Dowie. He turned professional in 1962 as wrestling gained popularity throughout Britain. Jim's contests were confined to Scottish venues where he met highly rated visiting sassenachs such as Danny Lynch, Alf Cadman and Ernie Riley. In December, 1964 Jim challenged Wigan's Ernie Riley for the British light heavyweight championship at the Town Hall, Falkirk. Doubtless the fans were behind him to a man but unsurprisingly Jim came off second best against the Lancashire technician and skilled catch wrestler. By travelling further afield Jim Farrell would undoubtedly have become more widely acclaimed. He retired from wrestling in 1971 due to a severe back injury.

Jim's daughter Karen has old us that Jim's actual name was Maurice, who was born in Dundee in 1933. His other passion in life was hillwalking and climbing.  He was a very active member of Tayside Mountain Rescue for many years too in fact he was Team Leader for a long time also.  Following his retirement from wrestling, Jim went on to become a primary school teacher and subsequently a head teacher. Karen told us she was very proud of the fact that her dad had been a wrestler and remembers being taken as a child to watch him wrestle in Ayr. Jim Farrell died in February 2012.

Jumping Jim Farrell (Ayr)  
Not to be confused with our other Jim Farrelll this was Jim Isdale,  the taller and the younger of two wrestling brothers that enlivened the Scottish wrestling scene in the 1970s. He started at The Old Mossblown Wrestling Gym as a sixteen year old in the late 1960's. He progressed under the tutelage of Dale Storm and eighteen months later had his first professional bout. Having pursued a busy grappling career for a few years, then having finished his Mechanical Training Jim joined the RAF Regiment and served in many theatres including Northern Ireland.

Subsequent injury meant he was invalided out of the armed forces and he returned to civilian life, where he helped out, when able, in and around local shows run by Spartan Promotions. Jim was a Welterweight of some considerable ability and were it not for his decision to enter military service there is no doubt he would have developed into a star of some note. At the Inaugural Wrestlers' Re-Union Scotland meeting in Ayr in June 2017,  Jim the only surviving sibling graciously accepted Awards in Remembrance of both Bobby and Ronald.

Paul Farrell
Low key northern wrestler, billed from Salford or Wigan, in supporting matches in northern England between 1935 and 1940.Low key northern wrestler, billed from Salford or Wigan, in supporting matches in northern England between 1935 and 1940.

Lew Faulkner
See the entry for Vic Hessle

Page revised: 06/10/2019: Addition of Jumping Jim Farrell and Paul Farrell, Additions to Guy Falla entry