Sport in Britain: A Social History by Tony Mason
In this volume, which was originally published in 1989, nine distinguished historians look at the origins, growth and organisation of the major mass-participation sports in Britain. They combine academic expertise with the enthusiasm of the true sports devotee in considering such vital issues as the social background of players and spectators, gambling, public popularity, media coverage and the impact of television, professionalisation and of course the age-old divide between 'gentlemen' and 'players'. Richly illustrated with rarely seen period photographs, the ten essays combine academic research with entertaining anecdotal evidence derived from the folklore of each game. Of interest both to the student of modern British history and serious sports fans everywhere Sport in Britain: A Social History is a fascinating and wide-ranging contribution to its subject.