Guide | How to Preserve, Exhibit and Celebrate Sporting Heritage
This paper starts by tracing the origin of sporting heritage, looking also at the evolution of this field in the UK, though the main focus remains on football heritage. The paper then moves on to analyse the origin and development of the museum more widely, looking specifically at the capability of the sport museum and, more specifically, the football museum. At the heart of the paper is the proposition of a framework that has been developed by applying findings from studies produced by curators and researchers in sporting heritage, museum and archival studies, conservation, visual culture, and performance studies, in relation to the documentation and preservation of football heritage, utilising, as a case study, the history of the Exeter City Football Club Museum.
While the paper focuses on football heritage, its authors hope that its findings could be utilised by other sporting heritage organisations, as the paper’s ultimate objective is both to support communities already engaged in the documentation, preservation and exhibition of sporting heritage, and to inspire others who may wish to start working in this field, but don’t yet know how to. Having said this, all sports present their unique characteristics and no framework will be comprehensive of all the nuances of a field that, in some ways, is probably almost as old as humankind.
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