Hitchin Town FC looks forward to joining Hitchin Festival Week with an evening of Sporting History at the Canary Club, Fishponds Road, Hitchin.

The event takes place on Thursday 19 July at 7.30pm. There is a £2.00 minimum donation and proceeds will go towards the Humanitas charity. Tickets available to purchase here.

Introducing, Julian Whippy

Julian, Director of Battle honours, a local Battle Tour company; leads a number of bespoke groups and has spent a lot of time in Normandy researching the beach and inland battles of 1944. He enjoys leading groups to uncover lost or seldom-seen sites of battle from all wars. He has a military background, having served with the Royal Anglian Regiment as a member of the Territorial Army. A published author, he is a badged member and validator within the Guild of Battlefield Guides. Julian lectures on military history widely including in Whitehall for the Royal United Services Institute. http://www.battle-honours.eu/

The Greater Game

Amongst the many thousands of lives cut short in the First World War were hundreds of young men who had athletic and sporting promise.

From the book of the same name, this talk by Military Historian (and local) Julian Whippy, will tell the story of some of those brave young men and also look at the impact of War on sport in Britain, as so many men left home to go to “The Greater Game”. With intriguing, tragic stories from Football and Rugby as well as Wimbledon Champions and Olympic stars of the day the presentation is sure to challenge some commonly held preconceptions about the Great War.

While appealing to sporting and history enthusiasts alike this talk pays tribute to the true sporting heroes of a century ago.

And Neil Jensen

Game of the People is written by Neil Jensen, an experienced corporate journalist published in more than 40 publications worldwide. In his professional career, Neil has been a magazine editor, website editor, speechwriter, advertising copywriter and ghost writer. He is a member of the Football Writers’ Association. Neil has also worked for the BBC and SKY Sports over the years. Neil has also had three books published, Chelsea FC The first 10 years (1986) and The Men from Fishponds Road (1995). Tales of the Town (2017) (available for sale on the night). https://gameofthepeople.com/

“Footballers are soldiers, too”

A look at how football, the game of the people, adjusted to War, from the first conflict in 1914-18 to 1939-45.

In WW1, football was used as a recruitment ground, peaking with the Khaki Cup final of 1915.
In WW2, football was encouraged, with star names appearing for the services, in fact it was seen as a morale booster, unlike in the first war when there was some resistance to football continuing.
Also referencing Hitchin Town’s own wartime activities, the session also highlights the role football has played in society.

Tickets are available here.