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Horace Batchelor's Infra-draw method

During the '50s and '60s an entrepreneur from Keynsham, Bristol called Horace Batchelor invented a method for winning the football pools and advertised his method on Radio Luxembourg as a money making venture.

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Some years ago, I worked for a large brewery who had just acquired the Lyons group which included Fry's chocolate. Our division was anxious to develop business within the new enlarged Group. One day during a staff briefing, our manager outlined possibilities which included the Fry's chocolate factory. So I asked the location of this factory (already having knowledge, but I wasn't going to give up the opportunity of a gag) and was told 'Keynsham'  to which several of us were able to reply 'Spelt KEY N SHAM', showing the hours we had spent listening to Radio Luxembourg.

Paul Kidger

From The Times "Questions Answered" column - Jan. 10th 2003

What happened to the Horace Batchelor "method" for winning on the football pools? What were the principles behind the method and did any punter ever win any or the larger dividends?

Horace Batchelor used to advertise on Radio Luxembourg in the '50s and '60s. My late father and I used to try to make our fortune from his "system" but never won more than 15 shillings on the treble chance.
Basically, the system which was devised to pick draws was as follows: various features of a particular game were awarded points. For example, a local derby got points, if the away team were a certain number of places above the home team, more points were awarded, and so on. If I recall correctly, tghere were six features.
The advice given by Horace Batchelor was to use one's own skill to identify 16 games likely to be draws then the system to identify the eight getting the most points - those eight to be entered on the coupon. We used to run the system on all 60-odd games (very time-consuming) but to no avail.
Apart from Horace Batchelor himself, we never learnt of anyone who benefitted.

Peter B Baker, London, W5

I always understood that Horace Batchelor's "Infra-draw" method involved sending out, free of charge, different permutations of football teams to all of his customers. Those who won were expected to give him a percentage of their winnings; those who lost put it down to experience.
Alternatively, he could make a nominal charge which could be returned to those who lost, but retained from those who had received winning permutations.

Martin Buxton, Wakefield, W. Yorkshire

I don't know about its effectiveness but Horace Batchelor's "method" was very successful in teaching an entire generation how to spell "Keynsham", and that it was located "near Bristol".

Michael Robinson, Berkhamsted, Herts

208 It Was Great!
An affectionate anecdotal journey between 1958 and 1975 by studio engineer and producer Alan Bailey

 

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