Norman Bullock’s new signings in 1950 included David Jones, his trainer from Bury, and Bert Barlow, Ron Jackson, Jimmy Baldwin and Peter Small. In the close season he also signed Arthur Rowley.
Bullock’s revolution continued with the signings from Bury of Reg Halton and Fred Worthington. He also gave the former teenage prodigy Derek Hines a regular place alongside Rowley.
Chandler and Rowley
Bullock signed Matt Gillies as captain, Tom Dryburgh and Stan Milburn and Leicester finished in fifth place. Rowley’s 38 goals that season broke Arthur Chandler’s Club record, prompting this picture of Chandler congratulating him.
Reg Halton collection
This page of Leicester City autographs from 1951/52 was compiled by half back Reg Halton, whose son Robin has made it available to the Club’s digital archive.
1952 Holland Tour
In the close season, the Club went on a four-match tour of Holland. This itinerary belonged to director Syd Needham.
Club record purchase
Leicester paid a Club record fee of £21,500 for ex-Manchester United, Derby County and England star Johnny Morris in 1952. He was to be hugely influential for the next six years.
Ian McGraw's testimonial
Goalkeeper Ian McGraw, who had a finger amputated as the result of an injury at Grimsby in 1949, was awarded a testimonial. Rowley’s 39 goals, meanwhile, made him the country’s leading goalscorer. The next season was also to be a record-breaking one.
LCFC season ticket 1953-4
The 1953/4 season was the fifth year of manager Bullock’s five-year plan to get Leicester City back into the top division. The holder of this season ticket was to witness a nail-biting season...
These results, handwritten into a season ticket fixture list, indicate that Leicester, top of the table in the New Year, then suffered three league defeats (including 7-1 at Leeds) before recovering again later on.
To boost their final push for promotion, Leicester signed Portsmouth’s Jack Froggatt, who had played for England both at centre-half and left wing.
Second Division title secured
Leicester clinched promotion by winning their last game of the season at Brentford. Johnny Morris, Matt Gillies (captain) and Mal Griffiths celebrate with manager Norman Bullock (in glasses) and chairman Len Shipman.
This eight-page Leicester Evening Mail souvenir celebrated Leicester beating Everton to the Second Division title on goal average (which was used instead of goal difference). The difference was 0.3 of a goal.
The supplement highlighted Bullock’s philosophy of “Attack! Attack! Attack!” by pointing out that the team, spearheaded by Rowley and Hines, scored a record 97 league goals (109 in all competitions).
Call up for Anderson
The form of goalkeeper Johnny Anderson, an ever-present in this title-winning season, resulted in him being capped for Scotland against Finland at the end of the season. It was his only cap.
A celebratory dinner
A celebration dinner was held in honour of the team’s Second Division title. Chicken soup, Scotch salmon, fillet of beef, strawberry melba, sweetmeats, cheese, biscuits and coffee were served.
Appleton leaves Scarbrough for LCFC
Newly promoted to the top division, Leicester gave a debut to Colin Appleton, a young carpenter from Scarborough, (and future Leicester FA Cup Final captain), seen here leaving Scarborough in 1953.
Following a poor start to the season, Leicester signed Willie Cunningham, a full-back who went on to play in the World Cup Quarter-Finals with Northern Ireland in 1958.
Record crowds at Filbert Street
Manager Norman Bullock was sacked and chairman Len Shipman picked the team for the rest of the season. Relegation followed. Nevertheless, Leicester averaged home crowds of over 31, 000.
Halliday becomes manager
David Halliday was appointed Leicester’s manager in 1955. He managed Aberdeen to the 1954/55 Scottish League title. As a player, he had been a prolific goalscorer, especially with Dundee and Sunderland.
This page from a Players’ Handbook, and signed by David Halliday (“By Order of the Directors”), clearly spells out some of the Club rules for players to follow.
A future star
Halliday soon gave a debut to local England-Schoolboy international, Howard Riley, four days after his 17th birthday. Outside-right Howard was to become a Leicester City star in the 1960s.
First Filbert Street TV appearance
Halliday signed many Scottish players, including Willie Gardiner. His hat-trick in this 6-1 victory over Swansea featured in that evening’s TV highlights, the first ever to be broadcast from Filbert Street.
Needham passes away
Arthur Needham, one of Leicester City’s founder directors died in 1956. Halliday’s rebuilding of the team had secured fifth place in Division 2, laying the foundations for the tremendously successful season to follow.
1956/57, a season to remember
The start of a record-breaking season... which established new Club records for most wins, most away wins, fewest defeats, most points, most goals and the highest individual goal-scoring total.
Rowley breaks records
Arthur Rowley’s hat-trick against Blackburn was one of four hat-tricks he scored that season on his way to becoming the country’s leading goalscorer with a Club-record 44 goals from 42 games.
Hines on form
Leicester went to the top of the table in early December and stayed there until the end of the season. Derek Hines, Arthur Rowley’s strike partner, played a big part in this.
A long stretch
Derek Hogg’s injury against Stoke ended a run of 104 consecutive games, but his 36 games on the left wing alongside Rowley contributed hugely to Leicester’s success.
Forest match report
Table-topping Leicester’s 2-1 win at Forest, who were in second place, virtually assured them of the title. In the end Leicester finished 7 points clear in 1957 with a record 61 points at a time when two points were awarded for a win.
This souvenir programme for a friendly game against Hibernian commemorated Leicester winning their fourth Second Division title. The season’s average home gate was over 30,000. Nearly 41,000 watched the game against Nottingham Forest.
This commemorative Promotion Handbook contained messages from the Mayor, the Chief Constable, the chairman, manager David Halliday, ever-present captain Jack Froggatt and the players.
Team photo 1956/57
Leicester’s title-winning side. Back Row. (Players only) Ward, Ogilvie, Anderson , Gardiner, Maclaren, Appleton, Milburn, Froggatt. Middle row: McDonald, McNeill, Hines, Rowley, Hogg. Front. Morris, Wright.
Scottish youngster and future 1960s star centre-half Ian King made his debut in an attempt to improve Leicester’s poor start in their first season back in the top flight.
Dortmund come to town
The inaugural floodlit match against Borussia Dortmund was followed by others against Beogradski and Rio do Canto later that season.
David Halliday continued rebuilding Leicester City by signing centre-forward Ken Leek (pictured here) to replace soon-to-be-released record goalscorer Arthur Rowley.
Key signings made
Two more hugely significant signings followed, Ken Keyworth from Rotherham (second right, back row) and winger Gordon Wills from Notts County (second right, middle row).
With Leicester bottom of the First Division, manager David Halliday (left) was replaced by former captain and coach Matt Gillies (centre) in 1958. Relegation was once again narrowly avoided.
Banks gets his chance
Gillies continued the process of rebuilding the side. In September 1959, he gave debuts to future international stars, young Gordon Banks and Frank McLintock.
Foundations being laid
Future star left-back Richie Norman (second left middle row) made his debut in this Leicester squad which finished 12th. Foundations for future success were in place.