UK Web Archive blog

Information from the team at the UK Web Archive, the Library's premier resource of archived UK websites

The UK Web Archive, the Library's premier resource of archived UK websites

30 June 2021

Alternative Sports in the UK Web Archive - Part 2

By Jason Webber, Web Archive Engagement Manager, British Library

The latest post in the #WebArchiveSummerOfSport season that highlights the amazing UK sporting activities that have been captured in the UK Web Archive. This time we look at some popular recreational sports and pastimes.

Participation in outdoor and 'wild' swimming has increased over the last few years. Organisations such as Wild Swimming and the Outdoor Swimming Society give great information and guidance on this popular activity. One of the oldest and most famous outdoor swimming clubs is the Serpentine Swimming Club most famous for it's Christmas day race - The Peter Pan Cup. Bracing!

Peter pan cup londonist website

Peter pan Cup - Serpentine Swimming Club - Londonist Website, (archived 2017)

Hiking, Walking and Rambling
Walking in the countryside of the UK has a long tradition, helped by excellent maps by the Ordnance Survey and the wonderful web of public footpaths. These rights of way sometimes had to be fought for and the example of the 1932 mass trespass of Kinder Scout in the Peak District being one.

Peakland Heritage website - Kinder scout 1932

Peakland Heritgae website, archived 2013

There are many walking and hiking clubs in the UK, one of the most famous being the Ramblers Association. See this local branch in Swansea, based near the beautiful Gower Peninsula.


Swansea Ramblers website, archived 2014

Kayaking, Canoeing and Stand Up Paddle boarding
Messing about in boats is, of course, historically a wide-spread pastime in the UK, especially given the long coastline and many navigable waterways. Kayaking/canoeing takes many forms from the adrenaline ride of white water to the majesty of sea kayaking or just (literally) going with the flow. Much newer is 'Stand Up Paddle boarding' (SUP) where you stand on what looks like a surfboard and paddle along.

British Canoeing website - white water

British Canoeing website, archived 2015.

Canoe Wales website SUP

Canoe Wales website, archived 2017