FURD marks 2014 as Arthur’s Year

CoverFinalFULLSIZE2Football Unites, Racism Divides (FURD) has launched an exciting range of educational materials to coincide with the 125th Anniversary of Arthur Wharton signing for Rotherham Town in 1889 – and so becoming the world’s first black professional footballer.

A wide array of educational resources can be accessed free of charge through this new website, although users are welcome to donate via a link to FURD’s Just Giving page

The launch of the new site is the culmination of a package of educational materials produced by FURD’s Arthur Wharton Heritage Project, which includes:

  • The Arthur Wharton Story’ documentary film
  • A new Arthur Wharton exhibition
  • A 40 page booklet
  • PowerPoint presentations for use in school assemblies and lessons

One of the most exciting new resources is the production of a comic book ‘Arthur Wharton: Victorian Sporting Superstar’ which retells Arthur’s story from footballer to miner through the eyes of his granddaughter, Sheila Leeson.
‘2014 will undoubtedly be Arthur’s Year, the time when his amazing story will reach millions of people in the UK alone’, commented Howard Holmes from FURD.

‘A number of celebratory events are planned, including separate statues of the great pioneer outside Rotherham United’s New York Stadium and at the FA’s St George’s Park HQ, near Burton. We are encouraging fans, football authorities, clubs, youth and community groups and voluntary organisations to host events in celebration of Arthur’s life and achievements’, added Holmes.

This website will carry details of all celebratory events.

A grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, supported by a donation from the Professional Footballers Association, enabled FURD to explore Wharton’s amazing story through the use of art, drama, poetry and film in schools in Sheffield, Rotherham and Doncaster.

‘Victorian Sporting Superstar’ is available from enquiries@furd.org for £2. Discounted rates are available for bulk orders.

Contact enquiries@furd.org for more details of Arthur’s Year