Len Johnson ‘Fighter’ – King’s Arms Theatre, Salford

After finding out about Len Johnson at the Working Class Movement Library in the last session, this week we went to see a play about him at the King’s Arms Theatre.
They play covered aspects of Johnson’s life and work as a boxer and political activist.
Because of the colour bar in Britain at the time, Len was never allowed to fight for an official title.

Len Johnson Archive

This week we visited the Working Class Movement Library (WCML) in Salford, to find out about Manchester boxer a political activist, Len Johnson.

Jason Roche, an Historian at MMU, and ex-amateur boxer and boxing coach, also went along to find out more.

The group found a lot of interesting photographs of Johnson, and they also found out more about travelling boxing booths, which Len used to fight in, and which are an important part of boxing history.

We’ll be thinking about how to use some of this information in our films in future sessions.

Exploring Archives+

This week, the boxers visited Archives+ at Manchester Central Library, to find out more about the history of boxing in the region.

They met Heritage Collections Manager, David Govier, and had a behind the scenes tour of where a lot of the material is kept.

The lads looked at old maps of the local area, as well as trying out some of the new technology there, giving access to digitised records.

Beginning of Boxing

By Callum Baker

I started boxing when I was 15 and had my first fight when I was 16. I started boxing because I had nothing to do after school and my cousin had been boxing for a while at Collyhurst and Moston Boxing Club so I decided to join.

Boxing has gave me many skills what I can use in the ring but it has also made me more disciplined. Boxing requires a strict life style which you have to follow, getting up early, eating the right kinds of foods and training. You have to do this everyday when you’re training for a fight so that’s how you become more disciplined through boxing.

Now I have had 7 amateur fights and aiming for many more to reach my goal and turn professional.

My Day at MMU

By Robson Buckley

Truthfully, I woke up this morning and I didn’t want to come to MMU. However, I have had a really good time and I have met some really interesting people. We spoke about football, which is really important to me, as this is what I do and what I am passionate about! We looked around the MMU buildings which I really enjoyed and I have seen some things that i have never seen before that has really inspired me.

Robson plays football for FC United and Manchester.

FC United of Manchester

By Dominik Williams

FC United of Manchester are a club in their building stages and are a fan owned club looking to establish themselves in the English game.

FC United have 4 different teams they have the: First team, the reserves, the youth team and even a women’s team and for a club that hasn’t been around for very long they have made some excellent progress in the few years that they have been around.

The first team are currently top of the Northern Premier Division league with 8 games remaining and have a 7 point gap between them and the team in second place. FC United’s fans are some of the best in the non league scene averaging around 2,000 every match. Whether that be on a Saturday afternoon or on a Tuesday night the fans never fail to show up as they are making a stand against the ownership of Manchester United and are pushing the club to higher and better places. The reserve team also are top of their league with only a few games left in their league as well with the guidance of Rhodri Giggs are trying to push higher and get some of their players into the first team in the coming years.

The Youth team, after a difficult start to the year, are now sitting in second in the league and are only 3 points behind top spot. Yesterday the team played a match and won convincingly 9-1 with goals from Sam Summerbee who got 3 goals, Dominik Williams who got 2, and also goals from Robson Buckley, Boris, Toby Wright and Zac Cooper.

FC United of Manchester

By Adam Lockett

FC United Of Manchester is a fan owned football club in the seventh tere of English football. They have a first team, a reserve team and a youth team. The youth team is where the players aged 16-18 start and try and make there way into the reserves. The reserves is the team below the first team and is set up with players all pushing for a place in the first team. Lastly, the first team is the main team where the players are paid and who fans go to watch on a weekend.

This season, all of the teams are doing well and the club as a whole are aiming for treble success. The first team are top of there league with only a few games left, as are the reserves who have only 5 games left in there league. The youth team are second only 3 points behind the leaders. However, they have two games in hand on the leaders so therefore, they have a major advantage on the team at the top. It is vital that all teams win their league to boost their hopes of getting the club recognised on a more broad prospective.

The youth team boosted their title hopes majorly yesterday with a 9-1 win over mid table Macclesfield. This win didn’t only boost their title hopes, but highly lightened team morale as Macclesfield have already previously beaten them twice this year. Another positive from yesterday’s game is that there were between 40-50 fans watching the game, cheering the up and coming youths on. Youth team captain Adam Lockett was interviewed after the game and said, “The win is massive, not just on a mental note but it helps goal difference and league position. The win shown how serious we are about winning this league and showing what we can do.” He later went on to say that the win “felt even better” because of the two previous defeats to Macclesfield this season.

Many of the youth team have already progressed into the reserves already this season and have shown what they are capable of doing and the club plan on pushing many more of the youth team into the reserves as the season goes on. All of this is down to the first team manager Margy for watching the young players and seeing how good they actually are. He has previously said, “The club will go far with the young players coming through.”

Overall, I believe FC United will go far and will make a name for themselves as the years go by and become a team to watch as they rise through the tere’s of English football.

Manchester Metropolitan University

By Jack Tinning

On Thursday 26th March 2015, I came to Manchester Metropolitan University to further my education about the history of my sport. The first part of the session was all about the history of my sport; what sport used to be like and how things have changed. We looked at articles written about football and also looked at videos of football games from the World Cups from 50 years ago.

We were then treated to a free lunch in the Geoffrey Manton building canteen. The food was enjoyable and a friendly atmosphere.

After lunch, we then moved on to ‘The Shed’ where we learnt about the different ways that business people and designers come together to make a perfect idea. This comes from people intergrating their imaginative sides that are creative and also intelligent to make things work.

The most exciting thing about the day was learning about 3D printing. We were shown how designers come to these 3D printing designers with their ideas and prototypes. Then a they make a real exact prototype of their product. For example, Nike could come to a 3D printing designer with a product and get them to make it to show the company what it would look like properly and give them an idea of how the item will look to its exact dimensions.

Macclesfield Town 1-9 F.C.United of Manchester

By Alec Robinson

Yesterday was a great result against for us against a team who we have never beaten before, and who have beaten us on the 3 previous occasions we have played them.

Despite not playing, through injury, which was frustrating, it was great to see the lads put in a quality performance from start to finish against a good team. Everybody on the pitch played there part, starting from goalkeeper Ben Jupp who was left with nothing to do for large periods of the game but was still reliable as ever when called up on.

The defence was solid and communicated well, with right back Dom Williams scoring an unlikely brace including the opening goal. His partner on the right flank Sam Summerbee scored a hat trick, including a brace before half-time, then completing the hat trick with an exquisite chip with the game drawing to the end. Jacob Holt and Robson Buckley also netted before the interval to help us go in with a 6-0 lead and the points all but assured.

Macclesfield didn’t just roll over and come back out in the second half and began to make us work, scoring a well taken goal after a very good diagonal ball from left to right. The boys then stood up again to the challenge and continued the rout with Toby Wright getting himself on the scoresheet, Sam Summerbee completing his hat trick also, along with Zac Cooper who scored the final goal of the game with a brilliant chip over their keeper.

We wouldn’t have been finished there either if it wasn’t for Macclesfield keeper who, in truth may of had a poor game, but pulled a few good saves off towards the end from Jordan Sellers and Alfred, to prevent the scoreline getting even more embarrassing.

All in all a great performance by the boys and an important 3 points taking us to 3rd place in the table.