Bill Hutchison

William Henry Hutchison (28 April 1923 – 18 June 1982), often referred to as "Hutchy", was an Australian rules footballer in the Victorian Football League (VFL) with the Essendon Football Club, who played 290 VFL games, from 1942 to 1957, and kicked 496 goals.

Bill Hutchison
Personal information
Full name William Henry Hutchison
Date of birth (1923-04-28)28 April 1923
Place of birth Kensington, Victoria
Date of death 18 June 1982(1982-06-18) (aged 59)
Original team(s) Westmeadows
Height 174 cm (5 ft 9 in)
Weight 70 kg (154 lb)
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1942–1957 Essendon 290 (496)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1957.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables,

Generally considered one of the finest rovers ever to play the game, he captained Essendon from 1951 to 1957, and was a vital part of Essendon's premiership sides in 1942, 1946, 1949 and 1950.


The son of Scottish parents, Henry Kearton Hutchison (1884–1962) and Agnes Caskie Hutchison (1889–1977), née Brown, William Henry Hutchison was born at Kensington on 28 April 1923.[1] He married Helen Isabel "Nell" Giles (1923–2011) in 1947.

Football careerEdit

Hutchison played with Essendon from 1942 to 1957.


He made his First XVIII debut on 16 May 1942 as a wingman, against Footscray, in Round 2 of the 1942 season; originally listed as an emergency,[2] he was a last-minute replacement for the unavailable Les Griggs.[3]

Interstate (VFL)Edit

Selected in every season from 1945 to 1954, inclusive, and again in 1956, Hutchison played 30 games for Victoria and kicked 67 goals.[4] He was selected in the All-Australian team in both 1953 and 1956, the two years in which he also captained Victoria at the ANFC Carnivals in Adelaide and Perth, respectively. He was also selected on eight separate occasions in the Sporting Life Team of the Year: 1947, 1948, and 1950–1955.

Last matchEdit

His last match was against Melbourne in the 1957 VFL Grand Final. He was captain and first rover in the Essendon team that lost to Melbourne 7.13 (55) to 17.14 (116). He retired after the Grand Final, and he did not participate in the end-of-season night football competition that was held immediately after the final series.[5]

Brownlow MedalEdit

Once established as a rover, he consistently polled well in the Brownlow Medal vote count:


He died on 18 June 1982, after a short illness.[20][21]


Champions of EssendonEdit

In 2002, at a "Champions of Essendon" gala event, Hutchison was voted the fourth-greatest Essendon player of all time. The man who was voted Champion, Dick Reynolds, famously said: "I don't deserve this honour... Bill Hutchison was the best player I've seen."[22]

Australian Football Hall of FameEdit

In 2003, Hutchison was inducted as the 18th "Legend" in the Australian Football Hall of Fame.[23]

W. Hutchison MedalEdit

The W. Hutchison Medal is awarded annually to the best and fairest player in the First Division of the Essendon District Football League.[24]


  1. ^ Births: Hutchison, The Age, (Saturday, 12 May 1923), p.5.
  2. ^ Football Teams, The Age, (Friday, 15 May 1942), p.4.
  3. ^ Taylor, Percy, "Record Score in Game", The Argus, (Monday, 18 May 1942), p.6.
  4. ^ Maplestone (1996), pp.379, 380.
  5. ^ Dons Weakened for Night Game at South, The Age, (Tuesday, 1 October 1957), p.20.
  6. ^ Keen Struggle for Brownlow Medal, The Argus, (Thursday, 5 September 1946), p.12.
  7. ^ Votes Decide Brownlow Medal Winner: Deacon Wins from Bray; Tie for Third, The Argus, (Thursday, 4 September 1947), p.20.
  8. ^ Morris Wins 1948 Brownlow Medal, The Age, (Tuesday, 7 September 1948), p.8.
  9. ^ Brownlow Medal to Ron Clegg After Count Back; C. Austen Runs Second, The Age, (Thursday, 1 September 1949), p.12; Voting for Medal, The Age, (Thursday, 1 September 1949), p.12.
  10. ^ A. Ruthven Wins Brownlow Medal by Three Votes; Flanagan Second, The Age, Thursday, 31 August 1950), p.14.
  11. ^ Bernie Smith Wins 1951 Brownlow, The Age, (Thursday, 6 September 1951), p.14.
  12. ^ Who will Top Voting?, The Argus, Tuesday, 2 September 1952), p.8; Brownlow Winner Beat a 'Jinx', The Argus, (Thursday, 4 September 1952), p.1.
  13. ^ Buggy, Hugh, "Dramatic Finish to Brownlow Voting: Richmond Follower Snatches Narrow Win", The Argus, (Thursday, 4 September 1952), p.8.
  14. ^ Medals Awarded Retrospectively, The Canberra Times, (Thursday, 6 April 1989), p.18.
  15. ^ Brownlow Medal to Bill Hutchison: Wins With Record Number of Firsts, The Age, (Thursday, 3 September 1953), p.16.
  16. ^ Brownlow Medal to Roy Wright: Richmond Star Wins Second Award, The Age, (Thursday, 2 September 1954), p.10.
  17. ^ Buggy, Hugh, "Goldsmith pips 'Hutchie' by Vote: Full-Back Makes History in First Medal Win", The Argus, (Thursday, 25 August 1955), p.18.
  18. ^ Taylor, Percy, "Teammates Stopped James' Chance: Non-Stop Peter had Six Vote Lead, The Argus, (Thursday, 23 August 1956), p.22.
  19. ^ Brownlow Medal to St. Kilda Follower, The Age, (Thursday, 29 August 1957), p.18.
  20. ^ Deaths: Hutchison, The Age, (Monday, 21 June 1982), p.27.
  21. ^ Dick Reynolds' tribute at the time of Hutchinson's death:
    "HUTCHISON, Bill — Thank you for letting me share a big part of your life. I will always remember the happy times we had together both on and off the football field. I will miss you Bill. Your friendship was something I will always cherish. — Dick Reynolds (Deaths, The Age, (Monday, 21 June 1982), p.27.)
  22. ^ "Champions of Essendon". Essendon Football Club. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011. Retrieved 15 May 2011.
  23. ^ Hutchison finally among the greats, The Age, 1 July 2003.
  24. ^ Local Footy Stats: W. Hutchison Medal.


External linksEdit