Arthur Shelby Sr. is the father of the Shelby siblings.
Background Arthur Sr. walked out on his five children some ten years before the start of the series. The family has rarely seen him since. He is remembered by most of the family as a hustler, a thief, and a whore-monger. However, his eldest son Arthur Jr. still has feelings for him.
Series 1 · 1919Edit
When Arthur Shelby Jr. runs into his father Arthur Shelby Sr. in a bare-knuckle boxing club, he invites him for lunch at the Shelby home. When Thomas walks in, his reaction is like his Aunt Polly's; he's exasperated to see the father that abandoned his family. While his father proclaims that he's a changed man, Thomas won't have any of it. Arthur Sr. leaves and the conversation flips onto Thomas. Arthur Jr. points out the similarities between Thomas and their father.Later, Arthur Sr. talks to his son Arthur Jr. about his idea to open a casino like the ones he's seen in America. Arthur Jr. having lost the leadership of the Blinders to Thomas, sees an opportunity to make something of his own with his father: Shelby Casino. He gives his father the money to start the venture, who tells his son to meet him at the boxing club on Friday.
When Arthur Sr. doesn't come to the meeting in the boxing club, Arthur Jr. tracks his father to the train station, where he is departing with the money he gave him. He tries to attack him but his father pins him against the wall and threatens to cut his throat. His father then leaves the city, feeling neither remorse nor regret about stealing money from his son.
Arthur Jr. is left shattered by his father's betrayal, to the point that he later tries to take his own life by hanging himself.
Series 2 · 1922 Edit
Nothing is heard from him during series two.
Series 3 · 1924 Edit
Thomas, Arthur, and John learn that their father was killed in Boston. He was leaving a bar and two men were waiting in an alley and shot him twice. The writer of the letter to the brothers to tell them this, a female named Rosie Rice (who presumably had the closest relationship to Arthur Sr. at the time) told the Blinders that he begged their forgiveness whilst dying. However, they are not saddened about his death and the closest remembrance they have of him
to being fond is when he taught them how to kill and gut a Stag. Indeed, according to them that was the only time that he was close to being a father to them. They honour his death by hunting and eating a stag but decide that they will forget him after and not forgive him. It's even decided that his first name should die also as neither John or Arthur Jr. want to name their child after him, despite being passed down through many generations.
However, after Thomas collapsed due to a fractured skull and temporarily looses his sight, he murmured as if to his deceased father, telling him that he could see him.