Exeter City’s manager between April 1953 and April 1957, Norman Dodgin played around thirty games for the club before concentrating on his management duties. A player with Newcastle, Reading and Northampton, he managed Yeovil, Barrow and Oldham after leaving St James’ Park.After playing for local side, Whitehall, Dodgin joined Newcastle United in August 1940. It was to be some time before he made his league debut for them though due to the Second World War, however, he eventually totaled 84 league matches for the other St James’ Park club, scoring just the one goal. A £5,000 fee took him to Reading in June 1950, but he only featured 13 times in the league and in September 1951, Dodgin moved on to Northampton Town. Once again he only played in a handful of games - 19 - scoring once.
He was appointed player-manager of Exeter City in August 1953, and at the age of 31 was one of the youngest managers in the Football League. He made his debut against Leyton Orient in the opening game of the season. He retired as a player in 1955, but continued to manage City until being dismissed by a new chairman at the club in April 1957. Such was his popularity that the Exeter players demanded a meeting with the chairman to try and change his mind about the decision.
Dodgin was not out of work for long and in June 1957 he became manager of Yeovil Town, the job being advertised as paying a salary of £10,000 per year, plus a house to live in. His stay there was only three months as he moved to take over as manager of Barrow in September 1957. He resigned in July 1958 after a disagreement with the Barrow directors reportedly stating that they had given him no help at all, no money for players and no money for houses for players. The same month he became manager at Oldham Athletic, a job he held until May 1960.
Returning to live in Exeter he ran a newsagents business in Countess Wear for many years. Norman died in August 2000.