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March Lecture: ‘”Take the wife with you to see the lady footballers”: The development of women’s football in Scotland, 1880-1939′

March 7 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm


This will be a hybrid event hosted by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland which will take place both in Augustine United Church and online. Immediately after the lecture there will be a drinks reception.

This event is free and open to everyone.

Lecture will be presented by Professor Fiona Skillen MA MPhil PhD FRHistS SFHEA

The 5th of December 2021 marked the 100th anniversary of the introduction of the Football Association’s ‘ban’ on women’s football in England. Yet, 100 years on we have little understanding of the impact of that ‘ban’ or how, why and where women’s football developed within the nations which make up the United Kingdom.  

Scotland has in the last 100 years at least, had a problematic relationship with women’s football. It was the last European Football Association to formally recognise the women’s game in 1974. It has often been assumed and perpetuated by the press, that the women’s game only began to develop in Scotland from the 1960s onwards, culminating with the founding of Scottish Women’s Football Association (SFWA) in 1971. At a time when the profile of the women’s game has taken on a new significance within Scottish culture it seems right to explore and celebrate its long yet under discussed history and heritage.  

This lecture will focus on the initial findings of Professor Skillen’s current research project for FIFA which maps the development of women’s football in Scotland from the 1880s to the outbreak of World War Two. 

Lecturer Details

Professor Fiona Skillen is a Professor of History, in the Dept of Social Sciences, School for Business and Society at Glasgow Caledonian University. Her research interests concern modern history, in particular aspects of sport, gender and popular culture. Her work has explored the influence which dominant discourses concerning gender and modernity had on women’s sport and popular culture during the late 19th and 20th centuries. She has also worked on projects focusing on aspects of Scottish sports history including, the sporting heritage of Glasgow and the history of Scotland’s role in the Commonwealth Games.  

March 2024 Lecture Registration




House Rules

The Society has a zero-tolerance policy on harassment and bullying.

All attendees are requested to act with respect to one another during this hybrid event.

Anyone making comments which we believe to be inappropriate (e.g. offensive or abusive) will be removed from the event immediately. Equivalent procedures (e.g. with regard to spam) will apply online.



The main entrance to the church is up four steps with a handrail.

Step free access is available via a door to the right of the building – please ring the bell for attention. Please note there is a tight turn in this passageway.

A standard accessible toilet is available on the ground floor and lower level (accessible via lift).

The venue (AUC sanctuary) has a hearing loop included.

Assistance dogs are allowed inside the venue.

If attending via Zoom, captions are included.

You can find further information on Accessibility here.

Cover image: Professor Fiona Skillen, Glasgow Caledonian University © Fiona Skillen



March 7
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Category:


Augustine United Church
41 George IV Bridge,
Edinburgh, EH1 1EL United Kingdom

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