Old Grounds

Highbury Arsenal'Nothing remains except a hump, a wall or a Tesco site.' This is a tribute to the old football grounds of Great Britain, that were once steeped in rich history and that have long since been demolished. Featuring many photos by Han van Eijden, whose introduction to this section can be found below, as well as David Forsyth, Dave Couseins and Owen Pavey.  Please note that this section will feature many more lost grounds over the coming months.

Introduction By Han van Eijden

This website is dedicated to those grounds from a bygone era. These were the type of football grounds that were tucked away in a forest of chimneys, making for a delightful approach through cobbled streets on a rain swept afternoon, evoking an adrenaline surge when spotting the floodlights and sheer ecstasy on entering for the first time. Grounds with the charm of outdated conditions and pre-war facilities.

The Taylor report has introduced a dramatic change or loss of stands and traditional football grounds in Great Britain. Yet, with the demolishing of stands and grounds Great Britain is losing its footballing heritage. Nothing is saved for posterity. Why did it need a Dutchman to save parts of the West Stand at Deepdale in a country that dwells with the annual Trooping of the Colour? Great Britain and its inhabitants have an exquisite taste for traditions, history and romance in so many aspects but strangely enough not when it comes to football.

Preston North End - Deepdale

Old West Stand Deepdale Preston

 

It is heartbreaking to see clubs ignoring their rich history when yet another stand is reduced to rubble. As if there is a collective shame over yesteryear. What is wrong with incorporating traditional features in new designs?
 
Probably the best preserved ground is Hillsborough. This is a sheer relic for the connoisseur. This teasing shrine evokes the smell of Oxo, the whiff of tobacco, the odour of genuine leather balls and the sight of terraces packed to the rafters with men in hats.

Am I anti-progress? No, I am pro-nostalgia. Duncan has given me the privilege of letting my heart speak through the pictures you will see in this section. To save your wonderful football history for posterity.

Han Van Eijden
Egypt

Do you have any photos of Old Football Grounds or Stands?

The why not dust them off and allow others to also enjoy them via this Football Grounds website? Please note that I can only accept photos that you have either taken yourself or you have the permission of the person who took them. My contact email address is: [email protected]

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