Cecil Cannon: Local Hero

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Cecil Cannon: Local Hero

Post by anthony.brown »

Described in our website's history section as 'a native of Cambridge', Cecil Robert Metcalfe Cannon was actually born in Hitchin on 20th March 1901; Christened at St Mary's Church, Hitchin. on 16th April 1901. Died Cambridge 3rd March 1980.
Son of the wholesale confectioner Harry Cannon, who became Secretary then President, then guarantor of Hitchin Town FC.
In 1911 he is recorded on the Census as boarding at the East Anglian Middle Class School, Bury St Edmunds.
On 1st May 1918: RAF Service No. 163248
Position: Goalkeeper. 177 appearances for The Canaries between 6th September 1930 and 11th May 1935. See Fishponder's Stats and his Hall of Fame entry.

20th May 1921 Driving his car in St Ippolyts for Garratt and Cannon sweet manufacturers, his car was struck by a lorry, but Cecil was unhurt.
5th February 1928 The national press reported that: Cecil Cannon, Cambridge Town's goalkeeper, formerly of St Albans, was rendered unconscious on Sunday by fumes from a geyser in his bathroom, and he was found by his wife in the bath. Two doctors applied artificial respiration for 30 minutes before there was any sign of life, and he did not regain consciousness for four hours.
With two of his nine lives survived, perhaps he should have been given the nickname 'The Cat' rather than 'Tiddler'!

From the Buckinghamshire Examiner 5th September 1930
With largely a new side, Hitchin have dropped on two very fine pieces of luck in securing such experienced players as C.R.M. Cannon and S.F.Duller for goal and left back. With over thirty appearances in representative games to his credit, Cannon shows form which justified all confidence, and the local critics, who did not like to see the other goalkeeper* dropped, were silenced.
(*The other goalkeeper was Stanley Faulkner).

The new goalkeeper and left back Cannon and Duller, are local lads.

Cecil also played for St Albans City in the mid 1920s, (having signed from Hitchin Blue Cross Brigade in August 1924), earning many of his 50 county caps while there, and then for Cambridge Town before signing for Hitchin in 1930. Some clear pictures of Cecil and of Sid Duller are on the St Albans history website (www.saintsstatistics.co.uk).

He played against Hitchin for Cambridge Town in the AFA Senior Cup Semi-Final and replay in the 1929/30 season: 22nd March 1930 1-1 at Portman Road, 29th March 1930 at St Albans City, Cambridge winning 4-0. Cambridge Town lost 0-2 to Civil Service in the final. Playing for Hitchin in 1931/2 he was on the winning side in the final of that competition.