VIDEO: Help the FA find relatives to football's eight Founding Fathers

The FA today kicks-off a nationwide search to find any living descendants of football's 'Founding Fathers'.

Hailing from across the country, surprisingly little is known about the eight trail-blazers who gathered on 26 October 1863 in the Freemasons' Tavern in London to draft the 13 original laws of association football.

From humble beginnings The FA is now in its 150th anniversary year, helping to support 7m people playing the game at grassroots level through to the elite level of 24 England teams.

And The FA have now called upon the public to come forward with any information on the eight men who established the world's most popular sport 150 years ago.

The Founding Fathers of football are Ebenezer Cobb Morley (1831-1924), Arthur Pember (1835-1886), Charles William Alcock (1842-1907), Francis Maule Campbell (1843-1920), John Forster Alcock (1841-1910), Herbert Thomas Steward (1839-1915), George Twizell Wawn (1840-1914) and James Turner.

Any living descendants that can be identified and located will be invited to a special ceremony at Wembley to honour their ancestors in October.

England Manager Roy Hodgson will be at the event and said: "We should all recognise, not only the sporting contribution that these men have made, but the impact that football has had in this country and around the world.

"Football is part of the fabric of our society and without the vision of these eight men 150 years ago, it may not have come to exist. It is only right that we honour the founding fathers of this nation's favourite game."

And England goalkeeper Joe Hart is in agreement with his Manager, adding: "It is important we honour those that did so much for football. Whatever your background, everyone can play football. You just need a ball and a place to play and it is pretty much the same now as it was 150 years ago.

"I had a chance to hold the priceless original minute book when The FA launched its anniversary year and it was pretty special to see the laws of the game as they were first written."

Jane Clayton, cultural historian from the International Football Institute, University of Central Lancashire is leading the search.

She added: "This is an important historical search, we know so much about people who were pioneers in their chosen fields but surprisingly, little is known about the individuals responsible for gifting us the most popular sport in the world.

"We have initiated the historical search and whilst information is limited, we have a good base upon which to work so we are confident that through genealogical research and the public's help, we can trace some of the living descendants of the founding fathers of football."

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