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Histories of St James Park will have a premiere at St James Park this week.

Fans to relive Exeter City history as team battles for promotion

Forget just cheering on from the stands - football fans can explore the unique history of Exeter City through a new documentary as players embark on a promotion battle.

Fans, former players and the current manager Paul Tisdale each explore different decades of Exeter City in the film, called Histories of St James Park, which will have a premiere at St James Park this week. Supporters are welcome at the screening of the documentary on the evening of 27 April, beginning at 7pm.

Also on display will be memorabilia and pictures which show the remarkable story of Exeter City FC. The exhibition shows different aspects of the club’s history, including classic matches, people who work and volunteer at St James Park, old advertising and sponsorship, squad pictures, and the high points in Exeter City history.

The film and exhibition have been made by University of Exeter researchers, who are carrying out work with City staff, supporters, fans, current and former players, volunteers and students to develop a rich archive, which includes film, photographs, sound, and artefacts, to showcase City’s fascinating history and illustrate the role the club and its supporters have played in the community during the last one hundred years.

Gabriella Giannachi, Professor in Performance and New Media in the department of English, researcher Will Barrett, and, since 2013, 31 undergraduate student interns, in collaboration with the University of Exeter’s Digital Humanities team have created a web archive for the Club and Supporters Trust called Grecian Archive.

Exeter City fans can also get involved on match-days via a platform constructed by Mr Barrett, Crowd Formation, which allows players to have fun by acting as a mock football manager. The game helps fans explore the history of the club, as well as giving them a new way of being able to debate the skills of the current team. Crowd Formation is thought to be the only team-selectors app featuring only one club. Players can choose a new dream Exeter City team ahead of each real game the team plays. Players take part by picking a squad – which can be made up of current players as well as Exeter City legends such as Alan Banks or Dean Moxey. They can see statistics and information from each player, some from historical research carried out by the club and the University of Exeter. When they are happy with their team players they can submit it, and share with friends via social media.

Mr Barrett, an Exeter City fan, said: “This is the perfect time for supporters to learn more about the history of the club and to hear from those who have been involved in its running over the past few decades. They can also see some fascinating exhibits and use Crowd Formation to have their say about Exeter City.

“Exeter City fans already have a strong connection through the way the club is run and we hope they will enjoy the documentary, game and exhibition.”

Date: 24 April 2017

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