Wool City Rivals: A History of Bradford City and Bradford Park Avenue in Colour

The latest publication – and seventh volume – in the bantamspast History Revisited series is now in production and will go on sale in late November. Further details below:

Featured in the Bradford Telegraph & Argus, 5th October 2020

Review in the Yorkshire Post, 23rd December 2020

Review on the My Football Books website, 29th November 2020 (extracts below):

There are a handful of football books that sit in the category “it has to be seen to be believed.” This unique book sits very proudly in that group.

It’s a wonderful combination of beautiful pictures and a thoroughly detailed history of football in Bradford. A past which will leave many readers, if not done so already, looking to acquire the other titles in the bantamspast History Revisited series.

Football fans and history enthusiasts will adore this book. For those who appreciate both – this is an essential, and colourful, addition to your library. Enjoy!

The book is available to order from this link.

The History Revisited series provides a collection of books to offer a fresh perspective about the history of football in Bradford.

Wool City Rivals: A History in Colour by George Chilvers and myself follows my previous titles about the rivalry, Room at the Top and Life at the Top which were the third and fourth volumes in the series. Those earlier publications narrated the origins of sport in Bradford and the nineteenth century rivalry of the Park Avenue and Valley Parade clubs. I have two further books planned that will tell the story of the two Bradford rivals in the periods 1908-39 and 1939-74 respectively.

The books about the Wool City Rivals came about to explain how and why things occurred as they did rather than simply state what happened. My frustration has been that such questions tend to be overlooked in football histories and in consequence, left unanswered. Equally fundamental, I have discovered through my own research into the history of Bradford football that there have been superficial explanations as well as inaccuracies in earlier narratives that are misleading and need to be revisited. Bradford football is the prisoner of its history but sadly that history has been distorted by myths and erroneous claims.

I recall that as a teenager there was nothing to read about the history of either Bradford club and a motivation for this project has been to ensure that future generations who wish to discover that history will have a wide-ranging source of reference about Bradford football. Succeeding generations inherit football clubs and it is their prerogative to determine their identity and future traditions. All institutions including football clubs derive strength from continuity and a shared identity and that is why I believe awareness of their history is important and needs to be documented.

News about future books in the bantamspast History Revisited series will be provided on the BANTAMSPAST website [www.bantamspast.net] and through Twitter: @jpdewhirst. Updates will also be provided by email and if you wish to be added to our mailing please make sure that we have your details [em: books at bantamspast dot net].