What became of these historic British football grounds?
Many beloved stadiums have been demolished over the years, some to make room for commercial or residential developments, while others have been turned into areas of conservation. Here, we examine the fate of some of the best-loved British football grounds:
After spending 93 years as the home stadium of Arsenal F.C., Highbury was converted into a luxurious development of 650 apartments and penthouses. Dubbed ‘Highbury Square’, the development now houses one, two and three bedroom apartments along with penthouses.
Maine Road (Man City)
A development of new energy-efficient homes has bee erected on what was formerly the Manchester City FC Maine Road Stadium. The site has numerous large family homes available, the demand for which has been so high, the project launched early!
Ayresome Park (Middlesbrough)
Formerly the home of Middlesbrough F.C., the stadium was demolished in 1997. The site is now a housing estate, with just a small plaque to commemorate the 94 years of football that took place here.
The Baseball Ground (Derby)
After 113 years, the gates finally closed at The Baseball Ground in 2003. Since then, the site has been redeveloped, and there are around 150 new residential homes here instead.
Ninian Park (Cardiff City)
Redrow Homes acquired Ninian Park in 2009, and proceeded to erect 142 new homes as part of a £24 million development was on the site. Although the stadium has been demolished, the Cardiff City spirit remains as the housing development has retained the name, and there is a possibility of commemorative plaque being installed.
Filbert Street (Leicester)
Filbert Street, the iconic former home of Leicester City, was demolished in 2003 after it became apparent that more seating was needed to accommodate the growing fan base. Part of site is now the Filbert Village development, having been sold for £3.75 million, however, plans to develop further were put on hold owing to the financial crisis of 2007. The remaining space is now leased as a car park.
Highfield Road (Coventry)
Having served as the home of Coventry City F.C. for over 100 years, Highfield Road closed its gates in 2006. Demolition began in February of that year, and George Wimpey PLC took over to develop housing on the site. The physical area of the playing surface however was resurfaced with grass, so that the local community can still play football on the “pitch” at Highfield Road.
Burnden Park (Bolton)
After Burnden Park closed to fans in 1997, the stadium lay derelict and suffered for many years – ultimately leading to travellers and squatters arriving on site and refusing to move. It was eventually purchased for commercial development, and today there is a large ASDA, Co-operative Travel, Carphone Warehouse and many other retail establishments on site.
Written by: Ian Harrington on Friday 30/10/2015