Lancashire World War One Football

When looking through photographs which featured football clubs, matches and players from the early Twentieth Century there was one picture curiously out-of-place next to images of Manchester City, Manchester United, Blackburn Rovers, Bolton Wanderers and other sides from around the North West.

Lancashire Army Football Team

Back row (left to right) Broad, Eccleston, Lees, Sutcliffe, Kellock, Cook, Bullen, Kelly, Swarbrick. Front row (left to right) Barnes, Boyle, Speak, Shepherd, Latheron, Walmsley, Toothill.

The image of soldiers in uniform, stood in front of a stand at a football ground, was a marked change from the action shots and squad photos that surrounded it.  The soldiers pictured were members of the Lancashire army football side, players from regiments in the area who came together to form a team to play in an inter-county match against a Yorkshire side in 1916.

The team featured some of the finest players of the period, one of which was winger Eddie Latheron.  A Blackburn Rovers player and England international, Latheron was lauded at the time as one of, if not the best winger in the English game.  Originally from Middlesbrough, he moved down to Blackburn a few years before the First World War broke out and had established himself as one of the stars of the game in his spell at Rovers, collecting two League titles and two England caps before 1914.  Following the start of the conflict, and the postponement of League football, Latheron joined the Royal Field Artillery.  He unfortunately died during the war on October 14th 1917, aged 28, at the Battle of Passchendale where after pulling a comrade out of the line of fire he was hit with an artillery shot and suffered fatal wounds.

85th Field Battery Beret Badge

Badge of the Royal Field Artillery, image courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/rangergord/

The First World War was punctuated by tragic stories such as that of Eddie Latheron.  Another member of the side, Teddy Bullen, suffered a similar fate to his team-mate.  Bullen was a Bury F.C. player, a fine half back according to those who saw him play and, like Eddie Latheron, he joined up following the temporary end to the Football League programme.  Initially a member of the Royal Horse Artillery and then the Royal Field Artillery Bullen on August 11th 1917, in the commune of Vaulx-Vraucourt in the north of France.  He was the only Bury player to die during the First World War and a number of years ago the club honoured their fallen player with a memorial in the club’s boardroom.

Eddie Latheron

Eddie Latheron, picture from @stevew_chorley on Twitter.

Stories like those of Teddy Bullen and Eddie Latheron were an all too common feature of the First World War.  Young men who were taken in the prime of their lives fighting for the greater good. There were survivors from this team though and its a sad fact that some survivors failed to get the support they deserved following the end of the war.

Thomas Boyle began his footballing career at Barnsley before moving to Burnley.  He was one of the more colourful characters of early 20th century football.  He was suspended by Burnley in 1912 for “breaching training regulations and disobeying doctors orders”, however he put that behind him and went on to captain the side.  He remains, to this day, the only Burnley captain to have lifted the FA Cup following their success in 1914.  At the same time, he became the first captain ever to receive the trophy from a reigning monarch.

Tommy Boyle and his wife Annie

 

Tommy and his wife Annie. Image courtesy of Mike Smith

Boyle was wounded during his time on the battlefield and told he would struggle to play again, yet he did not let that curtail his footballing career.  He returned to captain Burnley post-war and was captain of Burnley’s first ever league title-winning team in 1921.  Despite his on pitch successes, he was never given the recognition many felt he had earned, achieving just one solitary England cap and three appearances for the Football League representative side.

Tommy Boyle memorial

Headstone erected for Tommy Boyle in 2010, image from https://www.flickr.com/photos/mike_smiths_flickr/

Unfortunately after his playing career had ended, following a brief spell coaching, Boyle succumbed to alcoholism and a gambling addiction which resulted in him losing his house and family.  A Burnley and Barnsley footballing legend and World War One survivor, he spent his final years at Whittingham Mental Hospital where he died on January 2nd 1940, aged 53, his cause of death given as ‘the general paralysis of the insane.’

The Main Entrance, Whittingham Hospital.

Whittingham Mental Hospital, image from Preston Digital Archive

All the young men pictured in the team photograph will have had their own stories and all played their role in the war effort.  We should never forget the sacrifices that an entire generation made to ensure our freedom.  These stories are a tiny fraction of those of so many young men in the First World War, all tragically similar and all should never be forgotten.

This blog post was written for Archives+ by one of our volunteers as part of our Heritage Lottery Funded project.

Many thanks to Mike Smith for use of images.  Mike has written well received books about Tommy Boyle and Burnley’s 1914 FA Cup success if you are interested in reading more on the subject.

A year with Archives+

About this time a year ago, while looking for something to do following graduating from university, I happened upon an opportunity to volunteer with Archives+. Having an interest in history, writing and Manchester in general, I decided to give it a go, a little unsure as to what I had let myself in for.

Heading to the old County Record Office, not the most welcoming of buildings to put it politely, it came as a pleasant surprise to find such a friendly and enjoyable place to work. Over the next few months I was able to get my hands on all manner of interesting items and write-up blogs about them, which have hopefully been of some interest!

City South Housing Trust visit to GMCRO

From freedom of the city declarations to the correspondences of retired footballers, scripts for short-lived 1980’s game shows to handwritten notes by Manchester institution Tony Wilson.  The finds have been brilliant, if a little frustrating when you expect to find a gold mine of intriguing stuff only to come up with a mass of thank you notes!

City South Housing Trust visit to GMCRO

At the end of last year my time volunteering came temporarily to an end as the County Record Office closed and preparations were made to move into the newly renovated Central Library. Come springtime, after being privileged to a sneak preview of the Library, complete with a West-Wingesque walk through the corridors underneath the building, I was able to get back to volunteering. The new library was a vast change from the old County Record Office, unfortunately though, some of the most unreliable PCs I have ever come across made it to the new building too!

The past year I have spent with Archives+ has been fantastic. It has given me new skills, the chance to handle brilliant archive materials and it is something I heartily recommend to anyone with an interest in local history.

Yuri Gagarin – A Spaceman Came Travelling … to Manchester

On April 12th 1961 Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin completed a 108-minute orbit of the Earth to become the first human in space and internationally famous. The Amalgamated Union of Foundry Workers realised Gagarin had been a foundryman before training as a pilot and it made an audacious invitation for him to receive honorary membership of the Union at their headquarters in Manchester.

The invitation was accepted on May 23rd but the timing of the visit remained uncertain until July 7th when the Russians announced Gagarin would attend the Soviet Trade Fair at Earl’s Court on July 11th and stay a few days. No corresponding official invitation had been made by the UK Government but visits were hastily arranged with dignitaries including Harold Macmillan, then Prime Minister, culminating in lunch with the Queen. The AUFW trip was only confirmed to Manchester’s Lord Mayor by the Soviet Embassy the night before.

On July 12th Gagarin arrived at Ringway Airport at 10am in pouring rain. He was accompanied by AUFW President Fred Hollingsworth who had travelled to London for that purpose. Seeing the waiting crowds Gagarin insisted his car should be driven with the top down and stood without an umbrella so they could see the man for whom they had braved the elements. By the time he reached his first destination his Major’s uniform was soaked through.

Yuri Gagarin waving from an open top car

This 1961 picture from the Manchester Local Images collection shows the AUFW headquarters at 164 Chorlton Road, now the Brook’s Bar Medical Centre. Over a hundred people including Gagarin’s entourage, union officials, a local MP and the office cleaner packed into the first floor boardroom intended for half that number. Hollingsworth presented Gagarin with honorary membership and a specially commissioned gold medal bearing the AUFW’s new logo and the slogan ‘Together moulding a better world’. Recently elected General Secretary David Lambert also gave Gagarin copies of two of his novels. From the balcony Gagarin waved to the crowd which had earlier brought road traffic to a halt.

Friendly Society of Ironfounders, Amalgamated Union of Foundry Workers

His convoy then made for the Associated Electrical Industries foundry at Trafford Park. The crowds en route reportedly included Manchester United players breaking their morning’s training. At AEI’s Metropolitan-Vickers works Gagarin went on a factory tour and spent so much time receiving congratulations from the workers he saw little of the foundry, although he recalled his foundry training when admonishing one press photographer for standing on a half-finished cast.

Thousands gathered in the car park to hear Gagarin’s speech via his translator, Boris Belitzky. These included local women with children and workers from nearby factories sacrificing their lunch break. The young girls thought him handsome and onlookers were struck by his easy-going personality, but many were surprised by the space hero’s slight stature: “He’s only a bit of a lad.” He talked about the teamwork from thousands of workers that made his flight possible and hopes for peaceful cooperation in space exploration one day. “It’d be better having a pint with the lad,” more restless listeners told the Guardian. “I bet his hands are bloody sore with all that shaking,” another speculated.

This picture from shows Gagarin during the tour. The AUFW medal can be seen on his left lapel. The other lapel bears his Hero of the Soviet Union medal.

Yuri Gagarin visits the A.E.I., Trafford Park, Jul 1961

Despite the very short notice a civic reception at the Town Hall had been arranged and that was to be Gagarin’s next stop after a brief visit to the cenotaph on St Peter’s Square to lay a wreath. At about 1pm he was greeted on Albert Square by thousands of well-wishers, a brass band playing the Russian anthem and the sight of a Soviet flag draping the Town Hall. Lord Mayor Biggs was Gagarin’s host and he was joined for a five-course lunch by the Soviet ambassador and other dignitaries.

One guest was Sir Bernard Lovell, director of Jodrell Bank. This was well known to the Soviets after its radio telescope had successfully tracked the flight of Russian vessels such as Sputnik and had helped them with transmission of the first pictures of the far side of the Moon from their Luna 3 mission in 1959. Lovell invited Gagarin to visit Jodrell Bank. It is believed the cosmonaut was keen to go but his schedule would not allow it.

Granada TV was also thwarted by Gagarin’s tight schedule. Our archives show it had hoped Gagarin could be interviewed at their studios by Prof Jim Ring of the Royal Astronomical Society. Records include a draft script and a thank you note from Barrie Heads, Head of Outside Broadcasting, to David Lambert who was the only person available in the end. The collection also includes transcripts of Gagarin’s interview with the international press at Earl’s Court the day before.

Gagarin returned to the airport around 4:30pm and on to London where he stayed for the remainder of his visit. In a radio message to the AUFW in 1962 he recalled the warm welcome he had received from the people of Manchester, in particular the Metrovicks visit where “… the firm handshakes of my fellow workers in the moulding shop were dearer to me than many awards.”

The AUFW had been the principal sponsor of the visit had considered it a huge publicity success. “This has proved to be the greatest day in the history of our Union,” said Hollingsworth. The Daily Telegraph reported in December that the AUFW paid £500 for the visit but that Lambert thought it “… was well worth the cost.”

Yuri Gagarin in Manchester, 1961

Gagarin continued his international promotional tour but never returned to space. In August his compatriot Gherman Titov orbited Earth 17 times over the course of 24 hours and became the first man to sleep in space. Tragically Gagarin died in 1968 during a training flight, leaving a widow and two daughters. By the end of the decade the Americans had surpassed Soviet achievements by landing men on the Moon and the world was talking of Neil Armstrong and the crew of Apollo 11 instead.

In 2011 the 50th anniversary of Gagarin’s historic flight saw renewed interest in these events, including the UK visit (see the website http://yurigagarin50.org/). A statue of Gagarin was placed on the Mall in London and has since moved to the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, where it was unveiled by his daughter, Elena. Each year 12th April is commemorated as Yuri’s Night by enthusiasts holding educational events and space-themed parties – learn more at yurisnight.net.

The North West Film Archive have footage of Yuri’s visit to Manchester which can be viewed in the film pods in Archives+.  These books in Manchester Central Library cover Gagarin’s life and Manchester visit in more detail:

Yuri Gagarin in London and Manchester: A Smile that Changed the World by Gurbir Singh

Starman: The Truth behind the Legend of Yuri Gagarin by Jamie Doran and Piers Brizony.

On October 4th Manchester Central Library will host an audio-visual performance called Space~Life by Radar Works which explores the theme of planetary interconnectedness using awe-inspiring space imagery. See http://mechanicalair.weebly.com/ for more information.

The Co-operative Holiday Association

After graduating from university last year, I started volunteering with Archives+ eager to get started on “public history” after three years of essays and exams. After an initial meeting, Archives+ offered me a project digitising holiday photographs c. 1920s. The combination of early travel and early consumer photography was too hard to resist and before I knew it, I was diligently working on the digitisation of over 420 photographs. The collection is wonderful and quietly charming, highlighting the sturdiness and beauty of the countryside. I hope you enjoy.

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Edinburgh greets Glasgow on the summit of Ben Arthur (the Cobbler). The white of Edinburgh, the brown of Glasgow. 27 December 1927.

Against the backdrop of commercial seaside resorts in the late nineteenth century, the Rev. T A Leonard founded the Co-operative Holiday Association (CHA) in 1891 with a focus on countryside touring. Its aim was to provide organised cultural holidays for the working-classes, based on the idea that the countryside was morally and spiritually advantageous against the cities and industry.

These walking tours proved immensely popular, with over 16,000 people holidaying per year. In 1913, however, Leonard felt that the CHA had become too middle-class and amicably split to create the Holiday Fellowship (HF). The history of the CHA and HF point to the burgeoning leisure and tourism industry in the early twentieth century, how social class affected the type of holiday one might enjoy, and to the Romantic idealism of the countryside against the city.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.91

The rocking stone, Rippon Tor, Dartmoor. July 1936.

The two organisations were not in competition, with HF offering international holidays – the first British overseas tour operator! Their first international holiday was in Kelkheim, Germany just before the outbreak of war. In 1914, guests were unable to return home and were interned in Germany for the war’s duration. The CHA, on the other hand, focussed on British leisure centres such as the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales, and Devon. In the late 1930s, the CHA took sightseers to Denmark and Norway – wandering through picturesque villages, visiting old palaces, lunching at glaciers, and making impressive mountain ascents. These international departures were instrumental in forming and cultivating overseas links.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.3

The Senns at Loen, Norway. c. 1920s-30s.

On each trip, the CHA conducted photography competitions for their guests – a mix of hobbyists and professional photographers. In the archives, there are folders full of beautifully-composed landscapes, intriguing group photos from particularly strenuous hikes, and idyllic lunch spots on the moors. If they were lucky enough, holidayers would see their photographs printed in the CHA’s magazine.

Here is a very small selection of photographs and documents from the archives. You will be able to see more at the Flickr album.

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Sights and Sightseers, Fountains Abbey. June 1939.

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Four ladies on the stepping stones at Hebden, Wharfedale Centre. June 1939.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.203

Steepfull Cove, Shanklin by Mr Ada G Willmott. c. 1920s-30s.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.287

Donkeys at Clovelly, Devon. c. 1920s-30s.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.265

Sunshine and Shadow at Clovelly, Devon. c. 1920s-1930s.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.234

A little help at Gordale Scar, Wharfedale Centre by J P Wheaton. c. 1920s-1930s.

GB124.B.CHA.PHT.3.95.296

Dated 6 September 1938. A letter from Margaret Winlow to CHA requesting copies of the autumn and winter circular, and enclosing snapshots (not pictured) taken at Westward Ho!, Devon.

For more information on the Co-operate Holiday Association and Holiday Fellowship, we recommend…

Behind the Scenes

Digitising the CHA photographs took three stages once a week across six months. The first stage consisted of handling and identification, giving each individual photograph its own identification number. The second stage entailed scanning the photographs into the digital archive. Lastly, the third stage involved inputting each photograph (identification number as given in the first stage, subject, description, type of file e.g. black and white photograph, postcard, and date) into a spreadsheet for later export into the comprehensive image and collections system.

This blog post was written for Archives+ by one of our volunteers as part of our Heritage Lottery Funded project.

War Horse Up Close

Working for Archives+ is never boring, every day is different and working in such a beautiful building is a pleasure. Some days are even better than others, though, and Saturday the 26th of July was something I’ll never forget.
War Horse Up Close 26/07/2014
Joey the War Horse from the National Theatre’s acclaimed production of Michael Morpurgo’s book came to Manchester Central Library. In the run up to the event we were so busy planning that I hadn’t stopped to think what it would actually be like on the day to see a life-size horse walking through Central Library.
War Horse Up Close 26/07/2014I was a little taken aback by just how big Joey is and how realistic. The sounds, the fact that he breathes and the way he is handled mean it’s very easy to forget that he isn’t a real horse. It was obvious to see who was familiar with Joey’s story as there were quite a few tears amongst the crowd but there were also lots of smiles.
War Horse Up Close 26/07/2014As you can see from the above picture lots of people came to Central Library to get a glimpse of Joey and to take part in the free activities taking place all day including puppet making, drama workshops and film making as well as the chance to meet Tommy Atkins and handle real First World War archives and kit.
War Horse Up Close 26/07/2014On the 13th of August the Archives+ team are attending a WWI commemoration event at The Lowry, aimed at families but open to all and I think there’s a good chance Joey will make an appearance. There are more details here. After seeing him on Saturday I’m looking forward to the event and I am definitely going to go and see the play.

 

Policing Manchester in the Early 19th Century

The birth of the modern police force in Britain, the typical ‘Bobby’ is a fascinating and complicated process which I spent a good deal of time researching for my undergraduate dissertation.  Delving into the archives held at Central Library I found a good opportunity to revisit this topic by looking at how policing reform impacted on Manchester.

Unlike other nations, the British had for centuries been sceptical about establishing a police force, seeing them as a way for tyrannical leaders to oppress the people.  However by the start of 19th century these objections were increasingly looking outmoded and impractical.  The demobilisation of thousands of soldiers at the end of Napoleonic War, combined with the mass migration of people from the countryside towards industrial centres like Manchester, created the perfect conditions for a nationwide crime wave.

Unfortunately the government’s laissez faire attitude to law and order meant policing remained disjointed and almost non-existent outside London.  In Manchester, for example, a 1792 Manchester and Salford Police Act was supposed to have set up a police force for the city but was never really implemented.  By 1800, with a population nearing 100,000, the city continued to be administered under the old medieval system with a Borough Reeve (chief city official) in charge of law and order.  Despite the growing population, maintaining the law fell to a handful of men; a deputy constable, four beadles and, when required, 200 special constables.  All of whom were paid for out of the Poor Rate (a forerunner to the modern council tax).  Their role in combating crime and disorder was mainly limited to patrolling the streets.

Nadin, Joseph, Deputy Constable (1802 - 1821)

For much of the early 1800s the policing of the city was dominated by one man, Joseph Nadin, who became Deputy Constable of Manchester in 1802. Before taking the position Nadin had worked as a thief-catcher a profession notorious for corruption and collusion with criminals. Jonathan Wild, an 18th century thief catcher had been revealed to be simultaneously running the entire London criminal underground while posing as an upholder of the law. Nadin own reputation for corruption followed him into his new position where he was noted for turning every offence into a felony, which allowed him to gain the greater reward. Looking through the Borough Reeve documents held at the Library I frequently came across his name as he held various other city positions during his term as Deputy Constable, and he was known to embezzle funds and take bribes. This allowed him to supplement his £300 a year income and by the time he resigned in 1821 he was able to retire to Cheadle Mosley in the Cheshire countryside. When he died in 1848, he left his family a small fortune, with a various properties in the North West to his Sons and £100 to his son’s three daughters.

First page of The Last Will and Testament of Joseph Nadin 1763-1848 - The noted Deputy Constable of Manchester.

However this corruption and misuse of his position left Nadin with enemies and it was his involvement in the infamous Peterloo Massacre in 1819 that almost cost him his life. The incident occurred when a large crowd gathered at St Peter’s Field (modern day St Peter’s Square) to protest against the lack of political representation. The city authorities decided to break up the meeting and arrest the instigators by reinforcing Nadin’s small force with the cavalry of the local Yeomanry. Nadin arrested the leaders of the meeting but in the process 11 people were killed and 600 were maimed.

 Policeman's truncheon (1819) Truncheon used at Peterloo

His involvement in what was a national scandal made him even more unpopular than he already had been, and looking through the archives I came across a newspaper article from a few months after the massacre detailing an attempt on his life.  While he was walking home one night he was shot at and the bullet passed through the crown of his hat. The article went on to say that a £500 reward was offered for the apprehending of the offenders, a considerable amount of money.

Intended Assassination of Mr Nadin, The Deputy Constable of Manchester 1819

Following Nadin’s resignation in 1821 the policing situation did slightly improve. Nadin was replaced as Deputy Constable by Stephen Lavender, who’d previously been a ‘Bow Street Runner’.  ‘Bow Street Runners’ were the closest thing to a modern police force in Britain before the establishment of the Metropolitan police in 1829. They were set up in 1750 in London’s Bow Street Magistrate Court by the novelist Henry Fielding, and were the first carry out the detection of crime rather than just prevention of it. I was unable to find much about Lavender’s career in Manchester but it is likely that he took what he had learned in London to improve the running of the city. I did however come across a document from the Borough Reeve dated 1831 in which it was decided that due to the problems of public finance, Lavender’s salary would have to be reduced from £600 to £400, highlighting the continuing inadequacies in funding police forces.

In a future blog I will continue the story of the emergence of the modern police force in Manchester, taking it up to the end of the nineteenth century.

This blog post was written for Archives+ by one of our volunteers as part of our Heritage Lottery Funded project.

The writing on the wall

Archives+:

Our Archives+ partners at the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre have a great new post on their blog so we thought we’d share it with you!

Originally posted on Reading Race, Collecting Cultures:

Our archive volunteer Helen has uncovered a fascinating story about women confronting racism in 1970s Manchester…

wall newspaper
Decades before Facebook and Twitter allowed people who had never met to communicate anonymously, a group of women from Manchester decided to use a real life ‘wall’ to gather views from local people on the subject of racism. The women, from Longsight and Levenshulme, were united by their opposition to the National Front, a right-wing, racist organisation that was responsible for preaching racial hatred and carrying out violent attacks on members of Britain’s ethnic minority communities. On discussing how to react to a planned National Front march in the city, the women came up with the idea of a ‘wall newspaper’ where they could get local people to air their views on the National Front. The wall newspaper was put up in Longsight’s main shopping street. According to the women:

This was only a few days…

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