Nippy winger Michael “Mike” Bowering was born in the Southcoates area of Hull off Holderness Road and came late to senior football at the age of 21 when he signed amateur forms for Hull City after impressing in local league football. Bowering progressed to the professional ranks in July 1958 and was handed his senior debut for the Tigers by manager Bob Brocklebank on the first day of September 1958. Providing the supply line for Bill Bradbury, Colin Smith and David Coates, Bowering kept his first team place until mid-April 1959, by which time promotion to the Second Division was as good as secured. Bowering scored his first City goal ten days after his debut in a 1-1 draw at Notts County and had added four further strikes by the first day of November 1958 against Chesterfield (a brace), Reading and Bournemouth. A sixth and crucial goal of the season for Bowering came in April 1959, the late winner against Rochdale that took City to the top of the Division Three table.
Bowering’s fine first season at Hull City was to be the pinnacle of his footballing career. Promoted to the Second Division, manager Brocklebank chose to revamp his squad with experienced forward players in the shape of Ralph Gubbins, Roy Shiner and Jackie Sewell. The emergence of talented teenage winger Charlie Crickmore and then later in the season the switch of Doug Clarke to the left wing both conspired to limit Bowering’s game time, and while the investment in City’s forward line failed and the club was immediately relegated back to the Third Division, Bowering was not retained for a further season in the division where he made his mark twelve months previously and left the Tigers in June 1960.
Bowering joined City’s Division Three rivals Chesterfield in June 1960 but injury in pre-season meant he didn’t break into the first team until October 1960. He was used sporadically for the rest of the season and scored once in 17 senior starts for the Spireites, the last of which came at the end of March 1961 against his former club Hull City. In the 1961 close season Bowering joined Gainsborough Trinity and a year later he joined Midland League rivals Goole Town. In April 1963 he suffered a double fracture of his leg, which appears to have drawn his footballing career to a premature end. Bowering returned to his home city, lived out his days and raised three children before dying at Castle Hill Hospital in June 2015.
Date/Place of Birth: 15 November 1936, Hull
Hull City First Game: 1 September 1958, Swindon Town H (Division Three), 21 years, 290 days old
Hull City Final Game: 23 January 1960, Bristol City H (Division Two), 23 years, 69 days old
Hull City (1957-1960), Chesterfield (1960-1961), Gainsborough Trinity (1961-1962), Goole Town (1962-1963)
Hull City Record
Career: 46 apps, 7 goalsMike Bowering