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Using the Archive for Sports Research

The British Newspaper Archive is the perfect research tool for discovering the history of your favourite sports team or delving into the origins of your local club or venue.

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Sport is one of the most searched topics on the site and it’s easy to see why. From historical match fixtures and results, through to news articles and photographs of history’s most iconic sporting moments, the depth and breadth of knowledge the Archive can offer is truly endless.

The 1956 Grand National horse race | Illustrated London News, Saturday, 7 April 1956 | Image © Illustrated London News Group

How to search

    1. Start by going to the search page and typing in the sports term that you want to find information on. It can be anything from the origins of a particular sport, a football team, a famous stadium or the members of your local golf club down through the years – everyone’s research subject will be unique. With Britain’s biggest tennis tournament on horizon once again, in this example, we’re using the history of Wimbledon.

Search Tip: Use the ‘phrase’ field in our Advanced Search to make your search more accurate. For example, entering “wimbledon tennis” will return all articles where these words are mentioned together.

2. Click the search button and you’ll be taken to the search results page. From there you can filter your search results by location, date, newspaper title, date added and article type.

For instance, if you only wanted to see how dedicated sports newspapers covered Wimbledon, you could select them from the newspaper filter list by clicking ‘More Newspapers’ and choosing them as you wish.

Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News | Saturday, 4 July 1931 | Image © Illustrated London News Group

Discover our sports newspapers

3. When you’ve found a newspaper page you’d like to view, click the thumbnail or heading to be taken to the page viewer.

How your search results will be displayed

Watch out! Avoid putting dates in the search box – it is easier to narrow down dates using the filters once your search results appear

Search for sports images

Use our new In Pictures feature  if you’d like to discover historical photographs or illustrations of Wimbledon or any other sports event, team or club.

Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News | Wednesday, 9 July 1952 |
Image © Illustrated London News Group

Simply search for the sport of your choice in the same way you would in the full newspaper search. All of your results will be images rather than articles. The newspapers that can currently be searched through In Pictures are our most widely illustrated ones – The Sketch, The Sphere, The Graphic, Britannia and Eve and, importantly for sports researchers, Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News.

How else can we help you?

Start Searching the Archive Straight Away

Learn more useful hints & tips

Find out more about In Pictures


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2 comments On Using the Archive for Sports Research

  • I am pretty much pleased with your good work. You put really very helpful information. Keep it up. Keep blogging. Looking to reading your next post.

  • There is no country or race who can make fun of other countries weird sports. we ALL have them. I never knew people thought Log Rolling was weird, but I guess they do. That was on British Newspaper when I was a kid, all the time.

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