The Sporting Statues Project

UK Sport Statue
Database and Map

US Baseball Statue
Database and Map

World Cricket Statue
Database and Map

World Football Statue
Database and Map

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Conference Papers

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About Us

The Sporting Statues Project records and researches statues of sportsmen and women around the world. Since 2010 we have published academic papers and magazine articles, and collected information on over 600 statues. The project is the work of:

  • Dr Chris Stride: Chris is a Senior Lecturer and Applied Statistician at the University of Sheffield, and also runs a statistical training and consultancy service. He has published across a wide range of social science disciplines, even dipping his toe into the pure sciences and humanities from time-to-time, and is particularly interested in the use of statistical methods to support and add rigour to research in areas where advanced quantitative analysis would typically be considered an anathema. His favourite statues are Bob Stokoe at Sunderland FC, Dragan Mance in Belgrade, and the Chemie Leipzig team group.

  • Dr Ffion Thomas: Ffion has been part of The Sporting Statues Project since its inception in 2010, is responsible for the mapping of statues, and has presented papers at the annual conferences of the British Society of Sports History, the North American Society for Sport History and the Design History Society. She received the poster prize at the 2011 New England Symposium on Statistics in Sports held at Harvard University, Massachusetts. Ffion graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2010 with a degree in English Literature, and in 2018 completed her Ph.D at the International Football Institute at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) on how football clubs use visual culture when moving grounds. Ffion now works for When Saturday Comes magazine and also writes for several other publications and blogs.

  • Dr John Wilson: John is a Human Resources consultant, with links to University of Sheffield and University of Oxford, and research interests in work, education and sport. He is actively involved in a campaign to raise the awareness of Sheffield as the birthplace of football through a sculptural tribute.

In addition, for the huge task of the football statues database, we have enrolled several associate researchers.

  • Nick Catley has acted as voluntary proof reader extraordinaire for the various project databases, and has turned his hand to tracking down football statues around the world too.

  • Ana Maria Chamorro has served as our Spanish correspondent, tackling the lengthy task of gleaning information on the 100+ football statues in Spain and much of Latin America. Mentions in dispatches to her brother who was sent around Buenos Aires on photographic duties.

  • Lucile Bernard, who seems to speak almost as many languages as there are statues, has worked on the project as part of the Sheffield University student intern scheme, carrying on Ana's good work in Spanish-speaking nations, extending it to Brazil and Portugal, and even managing to trace the mythic lost statue of Hugo Sanchez.

  • Pete Bradshaw is our latest recruit, working on both statue information collection and transcriptions in Spring 2018.

We'd also like to acknowledge the vast number of contributors to the site who have contributed information and photos, often going out of their way to track down statues for us, take pictures or help out with translations... your help is hugely appreciated!

The project was inspired by a chat between John, who had taken a large number of photos of UK football statues, and was interested in the background behind them, and Chris, who as a statistician, football fan and avid collector of things, was then keen to find out exactly how many there were. Ffion was recruited to the team, who then set out to catalogue the UK's football statues, with the aim of perhaps a magazine or journal article... Chris and Ffion have taken the project forward together for the past decade.