Fodens[1] Ladies, formed at a lorry manufacturing plant in Sandbach, Cheshire, contributed to a new vibrancy in women’s football between 1960 and 1980 when the team established itself as one of the pioneers of a female football revival and provided a public arena for several prominent international players. The activities of Fodens demonstrate a synergy with many of the characteristics of women’s football in these decades. From its early days playing charity matches the company team became a regular participant in the Butlin’s Cup, winning it in 1969 and 1970, before beating Southampton in the 1974 Mitre Cup final. This site is intended to present as much about the club as can be found from textual sources, illustrations and oral testimonies, and Playing Pasts is keen to hear from anyone who has any information on the team and its players. Just email Margaret Roberts, the editor-in-chief, on

To date, the archival sources utilised include private personal archives, company records, holdings at the National Football Museum, including scrapbooks, photographs, and match programmes, national and local newspapers, and an in-house magazine, The Foden News. Although these texts were often accompanied by photographs there was never any explanatory detail and identifying the participants through interviews with surviving players and their descendants is a priority. A summary of the archival research can be accessed here where a number of free eprints are available.

I have also set up a Facebook page for ex-players and their families to join and share memories and chat to friends as well as a place where I can keep everyone updated with progress on the project – click here to join the page

Article © Fodens Research Team

[1] There are variations in the way that the team is reported. Sometimes as ‘Foden Ladies’, sometimes as ‘Fodens Ladies’. The latter term is the one adopted on this site.