British Wrestlers Reunion
Strengthening the Ring of Friendship

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Marty Jones

 

Marty Jones was born on the 13th December 1953 in Oldham, Lancashire and knew from the age of six years old that he wanted to be a professional wrestler, little did Marty know at this time however just what he would go on to achieve in the wrestling business and the legacy that he would leave behind him.

 

 (Marty Jones started in the wrestling business very early)

Martys introduction into the wrestling business came, as we stated above, at the age of six when he was being bullied at school.  Martys father Roy decided that he would take his son to a local gymnasium to learn how to look after himself and in the process hopefully control his temper.  The gymnasium was run buy a friend of Martys father who just so happened to be the world renowned wrestling star Billy Robinson.  Marty could not have had any better tuition as Billy was a hard but fair task master who was known for his shoot style of wrestling, it was inevitable that if nothing else Billy would toughen a very young Marty up and this is exactly what he did.

Marty was adamant that he wanted to be the best but a career in professional wrestling was purely a dream at this point.  As many wrestlers had done before him Marty was taught the amateur style and trained under Billy and Ted Betley until he was 17 years of age. Marty was taught everything from how to fall correctly as well as the holds and also trained with the weights to build up his muscle. During this time Marty was competing in amateur wrestling tournaments around the country which culminated in him becoming British Amateur Champion.  After a few more tournaments in the amateur ranks Marty made a decision that would ultimately change his life.  A regular visitor to the local halls to watch the stars of the professional ring Marty wanted to be part of the 'inner circle' of professional wrestling and this was to be his next step.

 

 (Marty Jones quickly became a star in the wrestling business)

In 1972 at the tender age of 18 Marty was introduced to the world of professional wrestling having his first professional bout against Tony Charles at Bolton. Whilst an up and coming wrestler, Marty was often on first but this didnt deter him, he was gaining the experience that he needed and the more bouts he competed in the better he became and it was soon apparent that he was going to be a star, the many years of training he had received from Billy Robinson was paying off.  Marty soon came to the attention of the major promoters throughout the UK and was highly rated amongst them, this in turn was giving Marty more exposure to the wrestling public who soon took to the young star, Marty was on his way to becoming a household name.  It wasnt long before the largest promoters of them all came knocking, Joint Promotions wanted Marty and gave him a contract. 

On the 18th March 1972 Marty was to get his first taste of national exposure when he was to have a bout before the ITV cameras for World of Sport.  This was a great honour and somewhat unusual for a wrestler who had only been a professional for a period of months to even be considered for a televised bout but the promoters knew that Marty was ready and so he took to the ring in Bolton for his bout against Bobby Ryan.  On this particular occasion Marty was sharing the bill with such greats of the ring as Adrian Street, Les Kellett, Bobby Barnes and Count Bartelli and after his initial television appearance he was well on the way to being a true main event star.  Marty would go on to make numerous appearances on television right up until it was removed from ITV in 1988.

 (Marty Jones and the Dynamite Kid)

Marty Jones was by now becoming known around the halls of the UK and was soon coming to the attention of foreign promoters.  Many of the top British stars of the time were travelling to the likes of Germany, Austria, France and Japan and it was not long before Marty was asked to join these ranks.  Marty was soon competing around Europe, Korea and Japan where he faced such wrestlers as Tiger Mask, Antonio Inoki and Tatsumi Fujinami as well as being a tag team partner of Andre the Giant, all of these men were at the top of their profession and now Marty was joining them.  Marty also travelled to Canada where he teamed with the Dynamite Kid in over 40 bouts and had major success wherever they appeared.

 

 (Marty Jones teamed with Andre the Giant in Japan)

Whilst Marty was now an international wrestling star he continued to wrestle in the UK more and more.  Marty had a young family by this time and he had to provide and look after them and being away from home for months on end travelling the world was not something that he was able to do.  

Back in the UK Marty was now a main event star and was regularly stepping to the ring with the likes of Mike Marino, Jeff Kaye, Ray Steele, Colin Joynson, Tony St Clair and Caswell Martin to name but a few but Marty was eager to do even better and wanted to win titles.

 

 (Marty Jones had many epic battles and a rivalry with Rollerball Rocco lasting  20 years)

On the 12th November 1976 Martys dream was about to come true, a bout that took place in Wolverhampton against another young up and coming star of the ring in Mark Rollerball Rocco for the vacant British Light Heavyweight Title saw Marty secure the win and become the champion. Marty would hold this title until 1982 when he vacated it but regained it again on the 26th November 1983 in Manchester against another young star in Dave Fit Finlay.  Little did anyone know at this time what stars all three of these men would become. Marty would lose the title back to Finlay in February 1984 before capturing it back from him again a few days later in Leamington.  Marty would defend this title a couple more times before vacating it later that year.  

 

 (Marty Jones and Pete Roberts had a tremendous clash at Wembley Arena)

On 29th June 1979 Marty was billed to wrestle Pete Roberts in what remains one of the biggest wrestling shows ever promoted in the UK.  The show took place at Wembley Arena before a reported sell out crowd of 10,000 fans and this turned out to be one of the best bouts on the bill that night, two wrestlers who were at their very best entertained the crowd and although the heavier Roberts was victorious Marty put on a tremendous display and showed everyone why he was destined for stardom. 

 

 (Marty Jones tops the bill against Fit Finlay)

Marty Jones had many great bouts during his career but it has to be said that the bouts he had with Mark Rollerball Rocco and Dave Fit Finlay will go down in wrestling history as some of the greatest of all time.  These bouts were always packed with action from the first bell until the end with each wrestler having their fair share of victories alongside the blood, sweat and tears.  These matches packed venues around the UK with many fans being turned away due to sold out halls such was the appeal that they had.  These men were friends and they were enemies but one thing was certain whenever they stepped into the ring their were going to be fireworks and no more so then when Marty secured a victory over Mark Rocco when the promoters had a title versus title match. Marty won his fiercest enemies British Heavy Middleweight title in what many described as the bout of the year held in Woking on the 13th September 1978 but despite the win Marty vacated the belt immediately.

 

 (Marty Jones has another successful World title defence this time against Johnny Kincaid)

Marty had many epic battles during his illustrious career but the biggest was yet to come and it all happened on the 8th November 1982 in a televised bout from Bedford.  The wrestling world had been shocked and saddened by the untimely death of one of the greatest wrestlers the UK had ever seen in Mike Marino.  At the time of Mikes death he was the World Mid Heavyweight Champion, a title he had held, with the the odd exception, since the 1960s but it now meant that the title was vacant.  The promoters knew there was only one man who had a good chance of ensuring that the title remained in the UK and they turned to Marty Jones.  Eliminators were wrestled and now Marty was in the final against Bobby Gaetano.  A hard fought battle ensured and at any time during the bout either wrestler could have secured the win but when all was said and done Marty was victorious and was crowned the new Mid Heavyweight Champion of the World. Marty had reached the summit of professional wrestling, from the age of six he wanted to be the best in the World and now he was. However, being a World Champion was not easy and although Marty defended the title successfully on many occasions this was not always the case and he did lose it against his old foe Dave Finlay as well as Pete Roberts and Bull Blitzer (Steve Wright) although was always successful in regaining the belt such was Marty determination to be the World Champion something he achieved on seven occasions. Marty was also successful against another adversary in Skull Murphy for the World Light Heavyweight Title in a bout held on the 17th February 1983 but Marty vacated this title in 1984.

The wrestling world now knew the name of Marty Jones, he was in action all around the world and winning championships.  On one occasion he teamed with his old foe Dave Finlay to win the Catch Wrestling Association Tag Team Championship as well as having successful tours of India and Japan.  Back in the UK Marty was in huge demand topping the bill every night in either solo contests or tag team action even stepping into the ring on numerous occasions with the mammoth Giant Haystacks who at this time outweighed Marty by some 30 stone but this didnt deter him and in many bouts troubled the big man.

 

 (Marty Jones in action against Dave Taylor) 

In 1988 Marty and the wrestling business as a whole were dealt a massive blow when ITV did not renew the television contract.  Marty had been a mainstay on the small screen since 1972 and it was in no doubt that this was going to be a knockout blow for the business. With no shop window the wrestling business went into decline and promoters who once saw sold out shows were now seeing reduced attendances.  However, Marty was one of the biggest stars in the business and remained in high demand as promoters knew that if they could get Marty on their shows they would sell tickets and this is exactly what happened.  Marty worked for many promoters after the demise of ITV wrestling and continued with his winning ways by securing the British Heavyweight Title in 1996 by defeating Dave Taylor another one to add to his already bulging collection of Titles. Marty had also been training the young stars of the ring including a young wrestler who went on to fame and fortune as William Regal.

 

 (Marty Jones represented the UK all around the World)

Towards the mid 1990s Marty was now easing up on the number of shows that he appeared at.  He was a successful publican as well as a wrestler and this was taking a lot of his time but he was aware that after 25 years as a professional wrestler his body had been battered and bruised and as time went on Marty made the decision to retire from in ring competition.

Marty Jones may no longer be wrestling but he is passionate about the business and even now he takes a keen interest in it as well as giving a lot back to it. Marty supports the annual wrestlers reunions and has been honoured for his time in the ring by not only them but also independent promoters across the country.  Marty also makes guest appearances at various shows across the UK and had the honour of presenting his great friend Johnny Saint with his retirement plaque at a show promoted in Croydon by LDN Wrestling and filmed by ITV Productions in 2013.  Wherever Marty appears he is well received by the fans even in those towns and cities where he was not always the fan favourite.  

 

 (Marty Jones at the 2013 British Wrestlers Reunion)

In 2014 Marty retired from his pub and now spends his days doing another passion of his which is fishing, however, he never forgets the wrestling business and runs his own wrestling seminars where he gives his many years of knowledge to the up and coming stars of tomorrow.

We are honoured to induct Marty Jones into the Hall Of Fame.  A multiple time British and World Champion who has represented the UK around the World over a 30 year wrestling career, he is a true legend of the business the likes of which we will probably never see again and truly deserves the name for which he was always introduced as.....The World Number One Marty Jones.

 (Marty Jones collects his Hall of Fame award at the 2014 Reunion)

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