This podcast from Diane Clements, from a collection of short papers on aspects of sport and leisure history, has its origins in two North-West British Society of Sports History regional symposia hosted by Manchester Metropolitan University on its Crewe campus. The contributors come from many different backgrounds and include some of Britain’s leading academic sports and leisure historians alongside early career researchers and independent scholars in the field of sports and leisure history. The full collection of papers were later published in book form, Sport and Leisure Histories, please click here for more details and purchase information
Christmas Eve 1934 saw the funeral of James “Jim” Clements, the first Mayor of Brentford and Chiswick in West London. The funeral procession, the floral tributes and the service were extensively reported in the local paper, The Middlesex Independent, including details of all those who attended. Jim Clements was a lighterman, the owner of a local business providing tugs on the Thames. His funeral was attended by representatives of the Watermen’s livery company, crews from his own business, employees from other local businesses and the secretaries of both the Brentford and the Chiswick Chambers of Commerce. Council dignitaries and officials were present alongside Mr Stallibrass of Brentford Hospital and Mr Stratford of the Watermen’s Court Almshouses, just two representatives of various charitable causes supported by Clements. F.A. Davis, the Vice Chairman of Brentford Football Club represented Clements’ lifelong interest in the club. Various brothers from the Sons of Freedom Oddfellows Lodge lined up alongside brothers from several of the Masonic lodges to which Jim Clements belonged to hear the Vicar of East Molesey officiate at the service. The occasion epitomizes Ross McKibbin’s observation that the directors of football clubs ‘were often attached to business and social networks which brought them together in several overlapping spheres’.
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Article © Diane Clements