It is with great sadness that we have to report the death of a distinguished member of the club’s Hall of Fame: our redoubtable, former centre-half, Freddie Glidden.
Freddie was born at Newmains in Lanarkshire on 7 September 1927, but he was brought up in Stoneyburn, West Lothian, where his football ability was spotted by Hearts while he was playing in the juvenile grade for the successful local side, Murrayfield Rovers. Freddie was provisionally signed by Hearts in July 1945 and after a spell with West Calder Home Guard XI, he was farmed out to Whitburn Juniors and then Newtongrange Star.
Standing a shade under six-foot tall and weighing almost 13st., Freddie had real presence at right-half or centre-half, and he earned two International caps for Scotland while in the Junior Grade. He was called-up by Hearts’ manager, Davie McLean, in May 1948 and made his first-team breakthrough in 1951, eventually recording 270 appearances and scoring 3 goals (229 being competitive matches).
Freddie emerged as a powerful and intelligent defender and it was always said that he used his physique cleanly. He certainly attacked every ball in a fearless manner and accordingly, Freddie was a star performer throughout the fifties. In addition, despite being a part time player during much of his career, combining football with his job in the West Lothian Water Board, he never lacked stamina or commitment.
Freddie helped Hearts to win the Scottish League Cup in both October 1954 and October 1958, and he was a member of the squad that won the League Championship in record style in 1957-58. His greatest moment however came in April 1956 when he captained the team to victory over Celtic in the Scottish Cup Final.
Freddie played in Hearts’ first European matches (against Standard Liege) and was four times a reserve for Scotland prior to joining Dumbarton in March 1959. He retired from playing in 1962 and was later a sub-postmaster for over twenty years.
Freddie Glidden was a notable figure in Hearts’ history and our sincere condolences are extended to his family and friends.