1850s football rules

A group of Sheffield schoolchildren are today finding out first hand how the city helped shape the modern game of football.

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Original rules football played in Sheffield

This form of the sport was the forerunner to the modern game and led to the divergence of football and rugby.

Players were allowed to catch the ball and could score what was known as a 'rouge', a secondary goal scored through posts outside the main goal.

However, to meet modern health and safety standards the rules of 'hacking' or 'charging' will not be observed during the match.

The football festival is the result of work by local schools along with Sheffield FC and Hallam FC to explore football archives under the guidance of football historians.

The project's findings will be on display alongside historic collections from local football clubs, including the world's oldest football trophy, the Youdan Cup, dating back to 1867, and the world's oldest inter-school football trophy, the Clegg Shield of 1889.

Football is a major part of so many people's lives in this country, and it's a big part of identity too - everyone has stories to tell about their favourite team, whether amateur or professional.

This event is a fantastic example of communities coming together to explore and celebrate their local heritage.

– Michael Wood, historian

Celebrating the history of football in Sheffield

The history and heritage of the Beautiful Game will be celebrated with a match at Hallam FC's ground, the oldest football ground in the world, played to 1850s rules.

Schools from across Sheffield will come face to face at Sandygate Road and use the original 1858 rules, known as the Sheffield Rules, for the first time in 150 years.

This event is the culmination of a project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund to investigate the origins of the modern game.

Uriah Rennie, former Premier League referee and current president of Hallam FC, will be refereeing in traditional Victorian attire.

I have refereed around the world but I have always been drawn back to Sheffield where I grew up.

Football is loved right across the globe but not many people realise the game actually originates from Sheffield.

The city has a unique football heritage, influencing the modern game that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

– Uriah Rennie

Football match using 1858 rules

Sheffield FC of the 1850s

A group of Sheffield schoolchildren are today finding out first hand how the city helped shape the modern game of football.

As part of a Heritage Lottery funded project, they will be recreating an original Victorian football game using the 1858 rules at the oldest football ground in the world and ancestral home of the modern game, Hallam FC.

The game will be refereed by former Premier League referee Uriah Rennie, bedecked of course in Victorian attire and TV historian Michael Wood will be awarding the medals at the end of the event.

The teams will battle it out wearing Victorian dress, using a vintage leather ball and following rules which includes catching the ball and being allowed to score a rouge (kicking it between posts outside the normal goal posts).

The original rule book
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