My grandfather, Arthur Clarence Morris, was born in the district of Chesterfield on 11 April 1898. Apart from a few old family photos and some notes on the family tree which were compiled by my father’s cousin, I don’t know much about my grandad’s family. When the First World War broke out on 28 July 1914, he was 16 and would probably have already been in work for four years given that the school leaving age back then was 12, before it was raised to 14 in 1918.
My current research on sport in wartime Britain demonstrates that important things happened in the politics of football during the conflict. But it also shows how wartime football changed the course of the game in the post-war decades and how football came to be seen as a symbol of the British nation.
Dulwich Hamlet is one of the oldest and best known names on the non-league circuit. The club is no stranger to conflict and lost a staggering twenty-two members during the Great War and a further four during the Second World War of 1939-45.
I knew of the two sporting micro-myths that were part of Britain’s collective memory of the Great War: a Christmas Day football match in 1914 between British and German troops and British Tommies advancing into battle kicking a football ahead of them. I decided to research the Christmas football match story...
The appearance of women’s football during World War One is a subject that is gaining increasing attention from historians of the game. The origins of this phenomenon have yet to be fully researched, but it is known that some of the first significant games were played in Portsmouth from the autumn of 1916.
For me the football cigarette card has always been an item of fascination...There were a number of factors that led to me beginning the Footballers of the Great War series, but one of the main reasons was the desire to tell a whole range of stories related to football and the war. The medium of cigarette card design provides such a wonderful platform to tell these stories and the designer in me could not wait to begin the process.
Women's football is not 'new'. The First World War saw a massive growth in participation and popularity. Professor of Sport, Jean Williams, is developing an exciting new project to map the 150 women's football teams in existence at this time.