St Michael's and the School Boy Championship
Schoolboys Championship - ABA schoolboys
The transition from school aged boxers competing for their school to competing for their club has taken place over the last 40 years. In the above photograph taken from 1952 Schools and their teachers undertook the important organisational role that clubs and their trainers have today.
Schools set up the schoolboy championships (hence the name) and the boxers would enter the competition under their school. This type of matchmaking differs from today where now school boys and girls often enter from their respective and established boxing clubs.
Circa this 1950’s photograph, all the boxing training the school boys did took place at their school. The whole competition was set up by schools and their teachers across England and Wales.
Today school aged competitions are run and regulated by the ABA. Schools who still run boxing clubs and programmes now simply choose to place fighters in ABA competitions. In 1952 there were 53,000 entries of schoolboy boxers into competition across England and Wales. St Michael’s was not on its own in representing Birmingham at schoolboy level. Other Examples include, Bishop Challoner, St. Mary's and St Bead’s.
Schools like these would also take part in inter-school tournaments at the local level across Birmingham. All of this today would be unheard of in the boxing community. Labour MP Edith Summerskill, whose campaigning throughout the early 60’s eventually led to the end of boxing in schools across Birmingham, is known to have played an important role.