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The British Society of Sports History 2017 Annual Conference

Riverside building in the sunshine

The British Society of Sports History Annual Conference, University of Worcester, 1-2 September 2017

On September 1-2 2017 the British Society of Sports History(BSSH) will host its annual conference at the University of Worcester, United Kingdom. The event will take place in the Joel Richards Conference Suite and Riverside Building on the University's Severn Campus. The local organizing committee, BSSH and the University of Worcester are proud to host this year’s event and kindly extend a warm invitation to all who may be interested in attending. In keeping with the intention to foster broad debate, and productive and engaging dialogue, this is an open-themed conference and the organisers welcome a wider array on relevant historical contributions. BSSH and the local organizer as particularly keen this year to support Post-Graduate and Early-Career Researchers who are willing to present their research.

In addition, we would like to take this opportunity to invite delegates attending to conference to also enjoy the social, cultural and sporting delights of the historic city of Worcester during your stay. In addition to being a recognised Cathedral and University town, Worcester also boast a number of historic sporting venues in close proximity to the conference venue. These include the river Severn, home of the Worcester Rowing Club (est.1874); the Worcester Race Course (est.1718); and the Worcestershire County Cricket Club, host to a number of national and internationally acclaimed cricketers (and location of this year’s conference dinner!). The city is also home to Berrow’s Journal (est. 1690), arguably the world’s oldest newspaper still in print; the Royal Infirmary Museum and establishment site of the British Medical Association; the Civic War Commandery (est. 1085); the Cathedral (c.1084-1504); and, historic Friar street.

Call for papers

Submissions based on original research are welcomed from UK and overseas scholars and can relate to any aspect of sport, physical recreation, education and culture as considered from an historical perspective. See below for more information.       

University of Worcester ArenaKeynote speakers

Professor Tony Collins
De Montfort University
Winner of the BSSH Lord Aberdare Literary Prize 2015

Professor Mike Cronin
Boston College, Ireland
The Sir Derek Birley Memorial Lecture

Local Organising Committee

Dr Geoffery Z. Kohe
Institute of Sport & Exercise Science, University of Worcester

Dr Wendy Toon
Institute of Humanities & Creative Arts, University of Worcester

Dr Carol Osborne
Carnegie School of Sport, Leeds Beckett University       

Contact us

If you have any questions please do email us at



A registration form will be available here shortly. This will include accommodation and conference dinner bookings.


Full delegate: £190  (BSSH members £170)     Friday 1 & Saturday 2 September
Retired / Unwaged: £95 (members £85)
Day rates: £95 (BSSH members £85) 
Retired / Unwaged: £47.50 (members £42.50)
Postgrads & ECRs not presenting: £47.50 (members £42.50)
Postgrads & ECRs presenting: Free.

The BSSH will pay the conference fee and accommodation costs for presenters who are students or within 3 years of completing a PhD who do not hold a fulltime academic post.

Please note that all presenters must be BSSH members.

Membership can be taken up at the time of paper submission (£40 full membership / £20 concession).  Join here and reminder email will be sent shortly before the conference asking for confirmation of attendance.  Those who register for a free place / accommodation but do not attend the conference without notifying cancellation will be invoiced accordingly.

Call for papers

Abstract submission

Abstracts are accepted as follows:

  • Individual: a single abstract from an individual /co-researchers for 20 minute presentations
  • Proposed panel: a set of abstracts (ideally 3, or 4 maximum) submitted by a representative for a group of individuals/co-researchers examining a single topic or theme (session 1.5 hours, including c.30 minutes questions / discussion)


Abstracts should be c.200 words, including:

  • Full title: as it will appear in the conference programme
  • Outline of the context and/or academic literature informing the research as appropriate; Identification of core themes / argument of the paper and broad theoretical and/or methodological approach adopted as appropriate; significance of the research.
  • Also include your preferred title / name; affiliation; email address and short biography (c.50 words)


Abstracts must be emailed to by Thursday 1 June 2017.

Academic programme

Academic programme

The academic programme will be available here shortly.

Accommodation and dinner


en-suite accommodation at our St John's CampusWe are pleased to be able to provide delegates with ensuite bed & breakfast on-campus accommodation at the University’s St John’s Campus for just £41 per person per night.

The accommodation is located just a short 10-15 minute walk from the Severn Campus where the conference is based.

Additional accommodation options:

Conference dinner

Friday 1 September, 7.30 pm
£35 per person
Worcestershire County Cricket Club, New Road.

WCCC New RoadLimited places available! Delegates are kindly asked to book during the registration process.

Following a welcome drink on the terrace overlooking the ground, delegates will have the opportunity to enjoy a delightful 3-course meal with refreshments while enjoying the venue’s iconic view, its historic ambience and tales from a respected guest speaker.