John Edward “Ted” Tarrant was a footballing talent from South Yorkshire spotted and a young age and employed by the City ground staff from 1946 – when three months shy of his 15th birthday Tarrant scored four goals for a City side taking on a Polish Army XI. He became a professional footballer in February 1949, on his 17th birthday, but had to wait 18 months for his first team debut as manager Raich Carter powered the Tigers up to the Second Division in front of record crowds. Ted made three first team starts in late September 1950, replacing Alan Mellor in City’s midfield, but had to wait until April 1951 and the last four games of the season for another first team chance.
This was to be Ted Tarrant’s lot for two more seasons, an occasional reserve player filling in for more illustrious team-mates – though injuries also limited his ability to sustain a run in the first XI. He was bought into the first team by the Directors immediately after Raich Carter’s resignation in September 1951, but had only five games in three positions before returning to the wings. Six more games in December 1951 saw Tarrant replaced by experienced midfielder Denis Durham. In late September 1952, with Bob Jackson now installed as manager, Tarrant returned to the first team as a centre forward and scored his first goal for City in a 4-0 win over Sheffield United. But after five games Tarrant was again dropped and only appeared twice more all season. Tarrant scored his second City goal in his penultimate appearance, a 2-4 reverse at Bristol Rovers, and in December 1953 City sold him to Walsall.
At Walsall Tarrant finally became a regular first team choice, although injury again hampered him in 1955 when he had two knee injuries requiring surgery. He racked up over 100 league starts for the Saddlers at left half and contributed 10 goals. He also played for Walsall Cricket Club during his time in the Midlands. In July 1958 he joined Cambridge City, who had turned professional and joined the newly-expanded Southern League, showing an ambition to match their city and divisional rivals Cambridge United. Tarrant captained the Lilywhites and played for them until the 1961 close season when a £50 fee lured Cambridge to sell him to Clacton Town. Tarrant served Clacton for two seasons while also running a sports goods business. He eventually ended up living in Peterborough where he died in November 2005.
Date/Place of Birth: 12 February 1932, Stainforth
Hull City First Game: 23 September 1950, Blackburn Rovers A (Division Two), 18 years, 223 days old
Hull City Final Game: 10 October 1953, Luton Town A (Division Two), 21 years, 240 days old
Hull City (1949-1953), Walsall (1953-1958), Cambridge City (1958-1961), Clacton Town (1961-1963)
Hull City Record
Career: 30 apps, 2 goalsTed Tarrant