Football Club Formation and the Lancashire Leisure Class, 1857–1870

Swain, Peter (2017) Football Club Formation and the Lancashire Leisure Class, 1857–1870. The International Journal of the History of Sport, 34 (7-8). pp. 498-516. ISSN 1743-9035

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This paper outlines the transition from football games played for occasional amusement to a system of organized football clubs playing regular matches in Lancashire in the mid-nineteenth century. This was led by young men of an emerging Lancashire leisured class being, in the main, the public school educated sons of the northern county’s commercial and industrial elite. These families had accumulated sufficient wealth, especially in the first half of the nineteenth century, to exempt a considerable part of their population from work both at weekends and during the normal working week with football becoming an act of conspicuous consumption. Three case studies of individual clubs and leading individuals within those clubs are presented with detailed archival research carefully avoiding the teleology implicit in much historical writing of the past. It also swells the paucity of good historical material about the organization of sport at levels below national bodies. In so doing, it aims to illuminate some of the shadows in the big picture of the evolution of sport and leisure in Lancashire and Britain itself while informing the ongoing orthodox/revisionist debate into the origins of football in the nineteenth century.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Social Sciences, History, Football, club, Lancashire, conspicuous consumption, leisure class
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: School of Sport and Biological Sciences > Sports and Sport Rehabilitation
SWORD Depositor: JISC Publications Router
Depositing User: JISC Publications Router
Date Deposited: 05 Jan 2018 13:52
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2019 12:27
Identification Number: 10.1080/09523367.2017.1367289

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