Sport And The British

Sport And The British


Apart from the English language itself, the invention of modern sport has been our major cultural legacy to the rest of the world. In this 30-part narrative history series, with the help of the academic team from the International Centre for Sports History and Culture at De Montfort University, Clare looks at the unique and vital role sport has played, and continues to play, in our national life. Clare travels to Rugby, which can claim to be the birthplace of the modern Olympics, and she also investigates the role our sporting heroes play in shaping national identity - and rivalry. She discovers the vital role gambling has played, as well as the change from amateur to professional sport. From the birth of broadcasting to the way television has changed our relationship with sport forever - via the British Empire and the importance of sport between both world wars - this is a historic series about our national passion and how the British took sport to the world. Due to copyright reasons, this contains edited versions of the episodes that were originally broadcast.


  • Balding is such an enthusiastic companion, you can't help but succumb... this series is proving exceptionally interesting
    Miranda Sawyer, The Guardian

About the author

Clare Balding

CLARE BALDING is an award-winning writer and broadcaster who has been at the forefront of sports presentation since 1998. She has been a key anchor at seven Olympic and six Paralympic Games as well as multiple Commonwealth Games and Winter Olympics. She was awarded a special BAFTA in 2012 for her work at the London Olympics and Paralympics. In 2023, she took over as the lead BBC TV presenter at Wimbledon. She was a key commentator on the BBC's television coverage of King Charles III's Coronation in 2023 and for the Queen's Platinum Jubilee coverage in 2022. She has presented the television coverage of Crufts for nearly two decades and Lost Dogs Live on Channel 5, which helps reunite missing dogs with their owners. During most of her childhood she thought she was a dog and has tried to live with the mentality of a Labrador puppy: be pleased to see everyone and treat every new task as an exciting adventure. Her first book, My Animals and Other Family, was published in 2012 and won the National Book Award for biography of the year. In 2013, she was awarded an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List and in 2023 received a CBE for services to sport and charity in the Queen's final Honours List.
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