George Dewis

A Leicester City Legend

Born in Burbage, played for Stoke Golding, a lifelong career at Leicester City and retirement in Dadlington: the story of George Dewis. Information assembled by Denis Cash.

DEWIS, George Renger.
Role : Centre forward.
b. Burbage, Leics, 22nd January 1913.
d. Hinckley, Leics, 23rd october 1994.
CAREER: 
Stoke Golding / 1933: Nuneaton Town /November 
1933 : City / cs 1950: Yeovil Town.
Debut v West Bromwich Albion  (H)  9.12.33

Carefully nurtured as a likely heir to Arthur Chandler after George Carr had overseen his development at Nuneaton, George gave early evidence of his potential centre-forward prowess, based on strength and aerial ability, as city used him sparingly over his first five seasons. He might have known that fate would not always favour him, however, for his very first city strike, a week after his debut, was voided when fog caused 
the abandonment of the game after 65 minutes.

He was nearing his peak as the bustling leader of the line when war was declared - and George's club record wartime tally of 62 goals, scored in the 81 city games he managed to fit in during army service (which also featured several representative games for Northern Command allowed for a few guest appearances for Chesterfield, Leeds United, Sheffield united and Yeovil Town) instanced both his and the club's loss. George's best years were 
effectively behind him when peacetime resumed, even if an aggregate 19 goals in 1946 / 47 represented City's top individual haul.

He gave three more years as a player, and was soon back from his West Country non-league stint to start a second Filbert Street career, initially as assistant coach, then as trainer to the reserve and youth teams. The meticulous dedication and encouragement he lavished on successive waves of City 
youngsters deserves high  tribute - and drew grateful public testimony from the likes of Peter Shilton. Rather like Arthur Chandler, George wouldn't even let his pension-book keep him away from Filbert Street, where he remained as kit-man until 1983. 
APPEARANCES.
FL: 116 apps. 45 gls.
FAC: 13 apps. 6 gls.
WW2: 81 apps. 62 gls
Total: 210 apps. 113 gls.

From 'The Foxes Alphabet'

THE LEICESTER MERCURY      DECEMBER 1933.
SPORTSMAN'S LOG BY ERIC STONE.


WHOLE VILLAGE TO INVADE LEICESTER

I have not yet had the pleasure of seeing George Dewis, Leicester City's latest centre-forward, and probably the majority of the spectators at Filbert-street will also be watching him for the first time when he turns out against West Bromwich Albion next Saturday.
The fact that he has been drafted into the first team barely a month after becoming a professional, however, indicates that he 
must have created an excellent impression in his games with the Reserves.If Dewis, who I am told is a hefty, bustling type of player, who fears nobody, should turn out to be a second Arthur Chandler, then Leicester City will indeed be fortunate.
Leicester City supporters will wish him the best of good fortune on Saturday.

ALL STOKE GOLDING WILL BE THERE. The selection of the Stoke Golding youngster as centre-forward for Leicester City has occasioned the livliest satisfaction in the Hinckley District, particularly in Dewis's own village, where his clubmates last night, when the news came to hand, cycled to Nuneaton and put off the cup tie with Weddington, which should have taken place at Stoke Golding on Saturday.The reason was that every member of the side wanted to see Dewis turn out for the first time with the City's senior team. Moreover, had the match been possible, it was argued that there would have been no spectators for practically the whole village will be at Filbert Street, and today 'buses are being booked up in the Hinckley district for their conveyance.


HE PRODUCED THE STARS.
(Newspaper article)

Dedication and loyalty are qualities which seem to be at a premium in professional football today.But one man who has these qualities in abundance is 70 year old George Dewis, who has just retired after 53 years as a player, coach and back room boy with Leicester City.

Mr Dewis of Richmond House, 31 Hinckley Road, Dadlington, near Hinckley produced or encouraged such City stars as David Nish, Frank Mc Lintock, Steve Whitworth, Tommy Williams, Peter Shilton and Gary Lineker. These are just some of the names he discovered as a youth coach and he gradually nurtured their potential.

A former player with Nuneaton Borough he signed forms with City in the 1930's and played in the first team where he was known as a bustling inside left and a good header of the ball. After that he became youth team coach taking on players as young as 11. He said, "The youngsters of today are the first team players of tomorrow.". One of these youngsters was England goalkeeper Peter Shilton.

NATURAL ABILITY.
"He came along when he was 11 and I told his father he should bring him along to the twice weekly training sessions." The rest is history, but Mr Dewis is quick to point out that Shilton already had the natural ability. He just had to be encouraged to use it, and by the time he was 16 he was in the first team.Mr Dewis spotted Tommy Williams kicking a ball around Filbert Street car park and invited him along to a coaching session."There are a good percentage who go through, but a lot don't and it's heartbreaking to tell keen young lads they won't make it," he said.On the training field Mr Dewis admits he was a tough disciplinarian. "If you don't have discipline, you haven't got anything," he said.


GEORGE DEWIS DIES.
(Newspaper article)

Former Leicester City player and coach, George Dewis of Hinckley Road, Dadlington, died in Hinckley Nursing home on 
Sunday aged 81. After a spell with Nuneaton Borough, George signed forms with City in the 1930's beginning a 53 year working association with the club which ended when he retired at 70. A bustling inside left and good header of the ball, he later became youth team coach and gained a reputation for spotting talent in players as young as 11. He produced or encouraged such well known names as Gary Lineker, Peter Shilton, David Nish, Frank Mc Lintock, Steve Whitworth and Tommy Williams, who he first saw kicking a ball in Filbert Street car But, for every one who made it, there were others who would not fulfil the potential and George said it was heart-breaking to tell young lads they would not make the grade.

George died on 23rd October 1994 and found a last resting place in Stoke Golding cemetery where he was joined some 
years later by his beloved wife. Peter Shilton attended the funeral service.
This man was a footballer of renown, and his gravestone can be found on the left beyond the war Memorial. It depicts a 
footballer. What else?.
Fact File
For further information and a complete record of his appearances, download the fact file.
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