Scarborough, Yorkshire born winger Phil Cartwright began his football career with hometown club Scarborough in 1924 from where he joined Second Division Middlesbrough in March 1925, making his Football League debut for ‘Boro against Southampton in March 1926. He played 6 times for ‘Boro before the season end but had no further first team opportunities before joining Bradford Park Avenue in May 1927. He played 16 times the next season as Avenue won the Third Division (North) Championship in 1927-28, staying another season in the Second Division before joining Hull City in July 1929 after 5 goals in 22 appearances.
His stay at Anlaby Road was a single season, playing 21 games before joining Lincoln City in May 1930. Cartwright missed only two games scoring 12 goals as The Imps finished runners-uo in the Third Division (North) in 1930-31 narrowly missing out on promotion, before going one better winning the Championship in 1931-32, when he scored 8 goals in 34 games during the League campaign.
Cartwright stayed a third season in the Second Division before moving to Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic in July 1933 after 24 goals in 90 appearances for Lincoln City, but he failed to make the first team before re-joining Scarborough in later in 1933. In September 1934 he spent a month with Carlisle United, making 3 League appearances, before joining Rotherham United the next month, where he spent the rest of 1934-35, and 1935-36 before a move to Mansfield Town, however he failed to make either team’s first eleven, retiring in 1937.