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14th August 2023

With England's Lionesses in the semi-finals of the Women's World Cup this week, we are celebrating sportswomen, their skills and athleticism (as above, Preston Ladies in 1939). We may not have many in our novels - it's more likely to be men who are playing cricket (The Priory) or rugby (High Wages) - but the C20 was filled with women's great sporting achievements which were often overlooked in the media. Indeed, at one point women's football was more popular than men's until, in 1921, the FA stepped in and banned women from playing and using league pitches and facilities, a ban which lasted fifty years. England did not have a fully professional women’s football league until 2018, making the Lionesses' achievements even more impressive.

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