Alfred Fell

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Alfred Fell
Full name Alfred Nolan Fell
Date of birth (1878-01-17)17 January 1878
Place of birth Nelson, New Zealand
Date of death 20 April 1953(1953-04-20) (aged 75)
Place of death Colchester, England
School Nelson College
University Edinburgh University
Spouse Marion White
Children Four sons and one daughter
Occupation(s) Medical Doctor
Rugby union career
Position(s) wing
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1901–1903 Scotland 7 (6)

Alfred Nolan Fell MB ChB (born Nelson, New Zealand, 17 January 1878 – 20 April 1953) was an international rugby union player for Scotland[1][2] as a member of Edinburgh University RFC.

Personal history[edit]

Fell was born at Nelson on 17 January 1878, the son of Nelson Mayor and painter, Charles Fell. He was educated at Nelson College (1887–1896),[3] a school his grandfather, Alfred Fell, helped found in 1856. British politician, Sir Arthur Fell was his uncle.

He married Marion White in 1908 and had four sons and one daughter. One of his sons, Lieutenant Walton Fell, Royal Army Medical Corp, died of wounds in North Africa on 13 November 1942.

Fell was also a keen yachtsman, a passion developed in his youth at Nelson. Fell died at his home at Church Street North, Colchester on 19 April 1953 aged 75.

Rugby career[edit]

Fell was a noted sportsperson, playing in his college's 1st 11 and 1st 15 (1894–1896). He was a champion 'miler' of the Scottish Universities (1901–1902) and Edinburgh University from 1901 to 1903.

Fell was a player (1898–1905), secretary (1900–1901), and captain (1901–1903) of the Edinburgh University Rugby Football Club,[4] which he is credited with building up to one of the best sides in the history of the game. As captain, his team's first season record read 15 wins, one draw, 425 points for and 6 against.

He had previously played in New Zealand for Otago University (1896–1897), and represented Nelson in 1896 and Otago in 1897.[5]

Fell played for Edinburgh City against Glasgow in 1899, Cities against the rest of Scotland 1900.

In 1901 he was selected for the Scottish national team[6] as a wing three-quarters.

Date Match Score Venue
9 February 1901 Scotland - Wales 18-8
23 February 1901 Scotland - Ireland 9-5
9 March 1901 Scotland - England 9-3
1 February 1902 Scotland - Wales 5-14
15 March 1902 Scotland - England 3-6
7 February 1903 Scotland - Wales 6-0 Inverness[7]
21 March 1903 Scotland - England 10-6

Although picked to play, injuries in 1904 and 1905 prevented him playing in the tournament of those years.

Fell was also selected to play against New Zealand in 1905, but declined as this was his home country.[8] Commentators from the time noted that he was a fast runner and good on attack, but lacked defensive ability.[9]

His interest in rugby continued after he retired as a player, being one of the founders and first President of the Colchester Football Rugby Club from 1925 to 1939 and again from 1946 to 1949. The club was in recess over the war years.

Medical career[edit]

Fell followed his uncle, Walter Fell, into medicine. He studied at Otago University and then Edinburgh University[10] where he graduated MB and ChB in 1902m proceeding to the MD in 1906. He won the Muir Cup in 1900 and was a double blue that same year.

In 1905 he became a member of the Royal College of Physicians and held house appointments at the Royal Infirmary, the City Fever Hospital and the Corstorphine Convalescent Hospital in Edinburgh.[11] He relinquihed this position in 1907 and settled in general practice at Colchester in 1907. He became President of the Colchester Medical Society and was a member of the Essex Panel Committee and British Medical Association. He was honorary secretary of the North-east Essex Division from 1915 to 1917 and again from 1920–21; honorary secretary of the Essex Branch from 1921 to 1924; Chairman of the North-east Essex Division from 1927 to 1928, and President of the Essex Branch from 1930 to 1931.

Military service[edit]

From 1918 to 1919 he served as a temporary Captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps and was based in Salonika, Macedonia; Bulgaria; Serbia; and the Caucasus.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Obituary, British Medical Journal, 23 May 1953, p 1169, and 6 June 1953, p 1284
  2. ^ Alfred Fell rugby profile ESPN
  3. ^ Nelson College Old Boys Register 1856–1924, edited W Devenish, Harry H Tombs Limited 1926, page 110
  4. ^ retrieved 16 December 2010
  5. ^ Football - notes by Forward, Otago Witness, Issue 2335, 1 December 1898, Page 41
  6. ^ The story of Scottish Rugby
  7. ^ Football by Full Back, Otago Witness, Issue 2559, 1 April 1903, page 50
  8. ^ Side lights on international rugby, NZ Truth, issue 963, 10 May 1924, p. 9
  9. ^ Notes by full back, Otago Witness, Issue 2613, 13 April 1904, page 52
  10. ^ Nineteenth Century New Zealand Artists: A Guide & Handbook, Una Platts, Avon Fine Prints, 1980, Christchurch, page 92
  11. ^ Personal Items, Otago Witness, Issue 2658, 22 February 1905, Page 33
  12. ^ OBITUARY – Mr C Y Fell, Evening Post, Volume XCV, Issue 137, 10 June 1918, Page 8