Leeds Road - Huddersfield Town
Popular (East) Terrace (photo)
What Was The Ground Like?
Leeds Road (Cowshed) End (photo)
What Is Left Now?
The Popular & Leeds Road Stands (photos)
Did You Know?
|The Leeds Road site
was chosen in 1907, as it was already used by
amateur football teams and was well served by trams,
that served Huddersfield at that time. The ground
saw its first game a year later and shortly
afterwards the newly formed professional club,
Huddersfield Town FC, adopted it as their home. They
played their first game in September 1908, a
friendly against Bradford Park Avenue. Initially
there were no covered areas at the ground and it was
not unknown for the players to get changed in a
In an effort to gain entry into the Football League, the Club came up with a grand plan to develop the ground. They hired Archibald Leitch, who had previously designed stands for Chelsea, Tottenham & Fulham. Leitch's plans involved the construction of a 4,000 seater covered Main Stand with a terraced paddock, at one side of the pitch. A gable was also to be added to the pitched roof. The Leeds Road End was to have a partly covered terrace (to the rear) constructed and two open banks of terracing were to be provided for the other sides of the ground. The total capacity was to be around 34,000. The Club were given admittance to the Football League and work began on the ground, in line with Leitch's plans, in June 1910.
During the 1920's, the Leeds Road End was given a new 'barrel shaped roof' which covered the whole of the terrace. The wooden roof led to the end being nick-named the 'Cowshed' by the supporters, a name which stuck until the ground was closed in 1994. The other terrace's were also further expanded. The East Terrace (also known as the Popular Terrace) was extended so that it was 126 steps high and this was given a roof in 1955. The other terrace, the Dalton Bank was also extended (but on a smaller scale) but was to remain uncovered. Still, these improvements boosted the ground's capacity and in 1932 over 67,000 fans crammed into watch an FA Cup tie against Arsenal. In 1950 the Main Stand was destroyed by fire, but this was replaced by a similar looking structure, although unfortunately without the gable. Floodlights were erected in 1961.
Saturday, April 30th 1994, saw the last ever league match to be played at the Leeds Road Ground. This saw a 2-1 victory for the Terriers over Blackpool (attendance 16,195).
|What Was The Ground Like|
|The ground was dominated by the huge Popular Terrace at one side of the pitch. This terrace was covered and extended to a lesser degree, around one corner of the ground towards the smaller open Dalton Bank Terrace, at one end of the ground. Opposite was the Cowshed, This covered terrace had an unusual looking roof, which was beveled in shape. The Main Stand on one side of the pitch, was a good sized covered all seated stand, that had a television gantry built into its roof. The ground also had a striking set of floodlights.|
|A retail park has been built on the site and nothing remains of the ground. In fact it is now extremely difficult to even figure out where the pitch used to be. Steve Foster adds; 'There is a brass plaque placed in the tarmac on the retail estate to mark exactly where the centre circle of the pitch once was'.|
|67,037 v Arsenal,
FA Cup 6th Round, February 27th 1932.
Although this was the recorded attendance, it may have been more as a number of fans, broke down gates on the Popular Side and got into the ground for nothing.
On The Left The
|Did You Know?|
Bank End boasted the country's first ever electric
scoreboard to be installed at a football ground. Dutch
Company Phillips gave it to the Club as a gift in the
The floodlights installed in 1961, were nicknamed the 'Dennis Law Lights'. It was the proceeds of his £55,000 transfer fee, to Manchester City, that funded their installation. Interestingly two of the floodlights blew down in a gale during the following year.
|I visited the ground twice. Once as a home supporter and once as an away fan. The home experience was spent on the Popular Terrace at an evening kick off FA Cup game. All I can say, is that the noise generated that night was unreal.|