All England Women's Lacrosse Association

Scope and Content

The collection consists of records created by the All England Ladies' Lacrosse Association and it's successor, the All England Women's Lacrosse Association until the merger of AEWLA with the English Lacrosse Union in 1996 to form one national governing body, the English Lacrosse Association.
The records include those of governance, finance, administration of membership and fixtures, rules and regulations, publications, photographs and team lists, match results and programmes for games played at all levels including internationals, territorials, counties, clubs and colleges, and school tournaments.

Administrative / Biographical History

Lacrosse, as a sport for girls, started in schools in the 1880s and 1890s and the first schools where it was played included St. Leonards School at St. Andrews in Scotland, Roedean School at Brighton and Wycombe Abbey School in Buckinghamshire. The first ladies club, the Southern Ladies' Club, was formed in 1905 by Greta Hindley, a former pupil of Roedean.
In 1909, Audrey Beeton was elected captain of the Southern Ladies' Club and in January 1912 she proposed that a ladies lacrosse association be started for the purpose of drawing up rules, etc. to which all clubs and schools shall conform. The Ladies' Lacrosse Association (LLA) was founded on 29 April 1912 with the following elected as its first officers: Penelope Lawrence (President), Margaret Stansfeld (Vice-President), Audrey Beeton (Honorary Secretary) and Irene Cohen (Honorary Treasurer).
In July 1913 the Association issued administrative procedures and rules for international, national and county lacrosse matches. Membership of the association was strictly limited to amateurs. By the end of the first season, there had been an increase from 20 to 70 schools and colleges as well as seven clubs. In 1913 the first international match was staged at Richmond cricket ground when England beat Wales and Scotland before an audience of 100 (mainly women) spectators. By the outbreak of the First World War the number of schools and colleges playing lacrosse rather than hockey had risen to 100 though it did not rival the latter game in popularity.
The LLA governed the affairs of women's lacrosse and controlled its amateur status; it was the official body to which schools, clubs and colleges could affiliate and it published the rules of the game. In 1920 Scotland formed their own association, with Wales following in 1930, and in 1925 the LLA changed its name to the All England Ladies' Lacrosse Association (AELLA), and in 1965 the name was again changed, becoming the All England Women's Lacrosse Association (AEWLA).
In 1996, under the guidance of Sport England, the English Lacrosse Union (the national governing body for the men's game founded in 1892) joined together with the AEWLA to form one national governing body, the English Lacrosse Association.


The collection has been arranged into the following twenty-two series:

  • Governance Records
  • Financial Records
  • Administrative Records
  • Regulation of Lacrosse
  • Lacrosse Development
  • Publications
  • Home Internationals
  • USA Tours and Touring Teams
  • Australia Tours and Touring Teams
  • Celtic Women's Lacrosse Team Tour of USA and Canada 1981
  • Great Britain Women's Lacrosse Tour of Hong Kong and Australia 1985
  • Territorial Tournament
  • Counties Tournament
  • Clubs and Colleges Tournament
  • National Schools Tournament and Schools Championship
  • World Lacrosse Tournament 1982
  • Women's Lacrosse World Cup 1986
  • Women's Lacrosse World Cup 1989
  • Historical Reference
  • Photographs
  • Memorabilia
  • Visual Recordings

Acquisition Information

The All England Women's Lacrosse Association Archive was gifted to the University of Bedfordshire by the English Lacrosse Association on 20 November 2014, under Accession Number AWL2014/001.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from University of Bedfordshire Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Related Material

Records for Lacrosse Scotland are held at the following address:
Lacrosse Scotland Office, Caledonia House, 1 Redheughs Rigg, Edinburgh, EH12 9DQ
Tel: 0131 3399 181

Records include but are not limited to the following:

  • Team Lists
  • Accounts
  • Minute Books
  • Scrapbooks of Scotland players
  • Programmes
  • Newsletters and Magazines
  • Touring Teams
  • Pop Lacrosse
  • Junior Lacrosse
  • Presscuttings