Remembering Dave Bowen who played for Arsenal and created miracles at Northampton

Finding Arsenal anniversaries in July is harder than finding them on 29 February, but we have three that are relevant to Arsenal’s history, and being a person who has lived for many years in Northamptonshire I am always interested in the history of David Bowen who played 146 games for Arsenal in the 1950s, and then went on to have huge success as the manager of Northampton Town, taking them from the 4th division to the 1st.   Although he is not seen as a key person in the history of Arsenal for Northampton he is THE man who made them great for a while and a stand at their ground is named after him.

Here are the anniversaries…

6 July 1916: During the 1st world war Arsenal’s chair, Henry Norris, undertook work for the War Office.  The records of this work were later destroyed so piecing together his work is difficult but we know he worked in Worthing for the WO sorting out recruitment before this date, but was back in London by this date as he made a speech at a Chamber of Commerce event in Fulham. Such is the way the story is recovered – by joining the dots from the information we do have.

6 July. 1959:  David Bowen sold to Northampton Town for £5,000.  He had previously been purchased from Northampton, and now went on to play 22 times for them in the 1959/60 season before retiring for playing, but staying as manager of the club.  He took Northampton from the 4th to the 1st division in five seasons. He was also manager of Wales (1964/74) and remained on the board of Northampton until retirement. He died in 1995 and the north stand of the Northampton stadium is named in his honour as is a street where he lived. 

6 July 1995: Jimmy Carter left on a free transfer for Portsmouth.  Having come from an unsuccessful spell at Liverpool he played just 25 times in four years for Arsenal and had had two loan spells at Oxford.   After leaving Arsenal he played almost 100 more league games for Portsmouth and Millwall.

And the main features.   There is an index to all our series on the home page.

Henry Norris at the Arsenal:  There is a full index to the series here.

Arsenal in the 1930s: The most comprehensive series on the decade ever

Arsenal in the 1970s: Every match and every intrigue reviewed in detail.



One Reply to “Remembering Dave Bowen who played for Arsenal and created miracles at Northampton”

  1. dave bowen only scored 2 goals for the arsenal

    but they were scored away to spurs in a 3-1 win I believe it was 1957

    one of my favourite players

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