Chester defender Ron Hughes has died at the age of 89.
He was the club’s second highest league appearance
holder with 399, only seven behind his contemporary
Ray Gill. A regular in the team throughout the 1950s
he mainly appeared at right back but also featured at
right half, outside right and even had a short, but
successful, run as centre forward in the mid-1950s.
Ron signed as an amateur for Chester in 1947, while
continuing to play for Mold Alex, and signed professional
for Chester in 1950. Over the next two seasons he was
a regular in the Cheshire County League side and was
given his opportunity in the first team when regular
right back John Molyneux embarked on his National Service.
His debut couldn’t have gone better with Chester
winning 5-0 at Rochdale.
With the departure of Don Travis in 1954 Chester struggled
to find goals and in September Ron was given his chance
to shine at centre forward. After scoring in his first
game against Grimsby he followed it up with goals in
the home and away fixtures againstCarlisle but capped
this with a hat-trick at Crewe. The run of six goals
in seven games was enough to make him leading scorer
that season. He later admitted that, although heenjoyed
his time at centre forward, he preferred playing in
defence because it was easier.
A solid and steady presence in the side Ron appeared
in four Welsh Cup finals for Chester without being on
the winning side. In the 1958 final he equalised from
the penalty spot against Wrexham in a 1-1 draw at Sealand
Road before suffering defeat in the replay three days
In 1957 he was awarded a testimonial against Everton
and, four years later, received a second benefit against
an All Star X1. In the programme for the second match
manager Stan Pearson spoke highly of Ron stating “Ron
can only play one way – giving everything,every
game and his consistent standard is remarkable. A hard
determined tackler who give no quarter. He has been
a model player.”
Despite missing only three games in the 1961/62 campaign
Ron was released by Bill Lambton during the summer and
spent a season with Holywell Town in the Welsh League.
He later managed his home town club Mold for a short
spell in the 1970s and was inducted into the Chester
Hall of Fame in 2016.
The club send out their condolences to his family and
FOOTBALL LEAGUE RECORD
Football League – 399 appearances 21 goals
First Chester game - v Rochdale (A) March 15th 1952
Last Chester game - v Carlisle United (H) May 1st 1962