Frank “Chic” Cullen was a British wrestling great of the latter part of the twentieth century. A world heavy middleweight champion who found success on both sides of the Atlantic, but we guess did have a few regrets that he had not been born a few years earlier. Fans should be thankful to the likes of Chic Cullen that British wrestling survived into the twenty-first century. Born twenty years earlier Cullen would still have been a major player in the more competitive days of the 1960s, combining charisma, action and wrestling skill.
Who could possibly tell his story better than the man himself?
From early childhood to this day I've been asthmatic and it's through that I got into wrestling really. I recall not being able to run without collapsing in a heap struggling for breath. In those days Asthma treatment meant for me a three month stay in Bannockburn hospital near Stirling. I always had an interest in wrestling from watching World Of Sport on Saturday afternoons with my Granny Jenny. Fun for us as 13 -14 year olds was a twice weekly trip to the local Argyll Youth Club in Stirling. It's there that I met Brian McInally who was teaching Amateur Wrestling, and since I couldn't play too much five-a-side footy like my pals I took up Brians offer to join in.
Soon we moved to nearby Bridge of Allan amateur wrestling club. I enjoyed it very much and although not too successful it was enough to get me hooked on all things wrestling.
At sixteen I met Orig Williams who was promoting shows at the Albert Hall in Stirling. I approached him a few times and was given 'the short sharp shift' for which he was renowned. However I persevered and finally got an opportunity to get in the ring with the late Brian Mason (Crusher Mason or at that time The Mighty Chang). He, and the also late Steve Peacock provided me with the springboard to becoming a pro-wrestler. Orig asked to meet my parents and told them I may have what it takes and he'd like me to relocate to Rhyl .... I thought where? Never heard of it!!
My parents who seemed delighted at the prospect of getting rid of me consented and off I went. After a few hours of training and debut matches, we were off to Sunny Spain! Me on tour as a pro-wrestler in Sunny Spain? You can imagine how excited I was at that prospect.... If I told you it was one of the worst experiences of my life I wouldn't be lying.
We travelled all over the country in a twin wheelbase transit complete with ring onboard, performing in Bull Rings, some that hadn't been used in years, some were derelict! In one Bull ring the curator was scything the long grass where the seating area was, as we erected the ring in the middle. Quite often no more than 10 or 12 people would show up..... What a let down to say the least, then we found ourselves not being paid for days on end and getting rather hungry at times.
Crusher however was to be saviour, we all laughed when he packed his primus stove and accessories back in the UK.... we weren't laughing when he proudly produced it in the middle of a car park somewhere in Madrid and proceeded to make us all lunch! Those of you who knew him will remember his array of gadgets, swiss army knives, torches etc etc.... God Bless him.. By the time we returned to the UK I was ringman/driver/wrestler/gophur etc etc..... Pro-Wrestling The Big Time!!
Frank was inducted into the Hall of Fame in August 2019