The story of a “forgotten” Wearsider who survived World War One to manage some of the world’s best football teams has been unearthed by his great-nephew.
Randolph Galloway, the son of a Millfield shipyard boilermaker, played as a centre forward for Derby County, Nottingham Forest and Tottenham Hotspur during the post-war years of the 1920s.
But it was his time in charge of clubs such as Valencia, Penarol and Sporting Lisbon which sealed his high-flying reputation in football – and even led to calls for him to coach England.
“I remember as a child going to my Nana’s and seeing a photo of Randolph on the wall.
“She used to tell me about him, but only the football angle really stuck in my mind at that age,” said Anthony Hindmarch.
“As I got older, and became more interested in family history, I started looking into his story. He achieved so much in the footballing world, yet he is almost forgotten today – even in Sunderland.
‘I don’t think the people of Sunderland know what Randolph did’ ANTHONY HINDMARCH
“He was the only one of all the lads in his family to break the tradition of working in the shipyards and move away.
“I find it amazing what one lad from Millfield could achieve with his life.”
Septimus Randolph Galloway was born to Francis Jewitt Galloway and his wife Mary Ann Graham on December 22, 1896.
“He was the sixth of 10 children, and spent his early years in Hedley Street.
By the time of the 1911 census, however, his family had moved to Ropery Road, Deptford, and later that year 14-year-old Randolph was sent to the Industrial Boys’ School in Silver Street.
“The school was originally a reformatory but, by the time Randolph arrived, it was training up boys for military careers,” said Anthony. “I’m not sure why he was sent there – that’s a bit of a mystery.
“He later joined the army as a boy musician and, during World War One, served with the Yorkshire Regiment in India where he acted as a runner – probably because of his athletic prowess.
“While in the military he ended up representing the Irish army in athletic contests, and even competed in London, winning both the 100 and 250-yard races. So he was clearly talented.”
Randolph’s return to Wearside after the war saw him hone his footballing talents with the Sunderland Tramways team, before moving to Derby County in 1922, where he scored 25 times in two years.
A move to Nottingham Forest followed, for what was then a club record fee. Alas, it was an unsuccessful period for Randolph, who scored just eight goals in 39 games between 1924-27.
But the late 1920s saw him enjoy rather better luck at Luton, Coventry and Tottenham Hotspur until, in 1929, he switched from playing to coaching, his first team being Spanish side Sporting de Gijón.
“My great-uncle didn’t set the world on fire as a player, but when he embarked in a career in management he was quite successful, taking on teams world-wide,” said Anthony, of Fulwell.
Randolph helped Sporting de Gijón win the Regional Championship of Asturias, before moving to Valencia CF – the third most supported football club in Spain after Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.
A two-year stint at Racing Santander then followed, although Randolph still kept his roots firmly in Britain, marrying sweetheart Mabel Wright in Nottinghamshire in 1930 and later running an off-licence there.
“War interrupted his career in 1939, and this time Randolph served as a PT instructor in the army. After that, he went right back to football, managing the Costa Rican national team,” said Anthony.
“From there he moved to C.A. Peñarol in 1948, managing a team which provided six of the players of the Uruguayan team that went on to win the World Cup in 1950.
“When England were defeated 1-0 by the USA in that same World Cup there were calls in national newspapers for Randolph to be brought back and coach the England team. Sadly, it never happened.”
Instead, Randolph went on to manage SC YF Juventus in 1949-50, followed by Sporting Lisbon from 1950-53 – a time known as the “golden years” after the club clinched three league titles in a row.
“He had a really successful career in Portugal, and his team won lots of trophies. But, although he is still remembered by the club, his actions seem to have been forgotten in Sunderland,” said Anthony.
Randolph later managed Lisbon’s rivals, Vitória SC, but retired from international football in 1955 to move back to Nottinghamshire with Mabel. He died there in 1964 and left £2,897 in his will.
“I don’t think the people of Sunderland really know what Randolph did. His management career was certainly the highlight of his sporting life, particularly at Sporting Lisbon,” said Anthony.
“I couldn’t believe it when I started to scratch the surface of his life and found out what Randolph had done. He is an unknown, and unsung, Wearsider – and I am very proud of him.
“His life is a forgotten story, and one that needs to be broadcast a bit more I believe.”
Galloway facts and figures
The Galloway family lived at 16 Bliss Street in 1891, 24 Hedley Street in 1901 and Ropery Road, Deptford, in 1911. Francis Galloway – father of Randolph – worked as a shipyard boilersmith.
Francis Jewitt Galloway was born in Sunderland in about 1865 and died in 1950. The Galloway family originally came from Scotland, but moved to Sunderland during the industrial revolution.
Frances married Sunderland-born Mary Ann Graham in the 1880s. By the time of the 1891 census they had two children – John and Francis.
Randolph had nine siblings: Ethel, Frederick, Gladys, Louisa, John, James, Francis - Anthony’s great- grandad), Joseph and Archibald.
Francis Galloway served in the Royal Field Artillery in World War One, while Joseph was in the Machine Gun Corps and Archibald in the Coldstream Guards.
Randolph died in Nottinghamshire on April 10, 1964, aged 67. He was survived by siblings James, Archibald, Ethel and Gladys.