Growing Up With Subbuteo
My Father Invented the World's Greatest Game
by Mark Adolph
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Mark Adolph was the envy of his schoolmates - he never had any problem getting rare Subbuteo teams because his Dad invented the game and owned the factory that made it.Mark tells the story of Subbuteo from the very early days when his father Peter had thousands of orders but no games with which to supply them.He recounts his father's adventures in football as a director of Tonbridge FC and supporter of Queens Park Rangers, as an avid collector of luxury cars and as 'a bit of a rogue".Did you know why the game is called 'Subbuteo'? It's because Peter Adolph wanted to call it 'The Hobby' but was persuaded this was not specific enough. Peter was an ornithologist and Falco Subbueto Subbueto is the Latin name for the bird of prey The Hobby Hawk.Peter began his adventure with an advertisement in Boys Own magazine in 1947 offering a new table top football game for 7/6d (37.5p in new money). At that time the idea was just that, an idea, and Peter went off to New York to value a birds' egg collection. Once there he got a telegram from his mother asking what she should do with ?7,500 worth of 7/6d postal orders, worth about ?750,000 in present terms. Then began the frantic process of making the game and suggesting it should be played on a pitch made from an old Army blanket!
- SportsBooks, December 2011
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