This chapter considers how Manchester’s footballing culture developed during the 1870s, analysing and interpreting the communities that became established in Manchester, how they developed the sport and what their influences were. It considers changes in the Manchester environment where, during the decade of Hulme Athenaeum’s existence, the population had increased to over 400,000 by 1871, exacerbating existing problems such as overcrowding in slum areas. The problems were those of a big commercial city, and polluted Manchester epitomised all that was socially bad in the effects of the Industrial Revolution. This chapter highlights the continuing influence of individuals such as Fitzroy Norris, who established Manchester’s second prominent association football club, Manchester Association, and remained a member of the footballing community for the rest of his life.
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