Blog Archives

Broken Hearts at Tynecastle

Following the trip to Rochdale that ended in Bury, I am off to Edinburgh. From a financial point of view, one of the most important things about groundhopping is getting the train tickets right. You have to buy in advance

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Delights and perils of groundhopping

End of February means that I am off to my annual meeting up with the Sports and Leisure History network at Manchester Metropolitan University in Crewe. And, as usual, I throw in a handful of football matches before and after.

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Posted in Football grounds, Football museum, Football museums, Uncategorized

Valley Parade, Bradford

Of all the horrible stadium disasters, the one that always has haunted me the most is the Bradford City fire in 1985. I remember watching the television news in horror, as they showed how the flames spread in seconds. 56

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Deepdale, Preston North End

Deepdale. The name has a romantic ring to it. Somehow reminiscent of Rivendell from Lord of the Rings. Home of Preston North End since 1875 (although admittedly the first years as a cricket and after that a rugby club), the

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Posted in Football grounds

Farewell Boleyn Ground

On Tuesday 10th May, West Ham United played their last ever league match at the Boleyn Ground by Upton Park. Next season they will move to the Olympic Stadium. I didn’t go to that match. But I went four weeks

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From “Pie and Pint” to “Palm trees and Paella” at Priestfield, Gillingham

I must admit that I didn’t really have any great expectations, when I made the ┬átrip to Kent’s only football league club, Gillingham. But being in London on work, I found out that there were two matches on this Tuesday

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Ewood Park, Blackburn

I went to my first match at Ewood Park the day after visiting Carlisle United’s Brunton Park. Comparing the two grounds, you really get a sense of how dramatically English football was transformed around 1990 in the aftermath of Hillsborough.

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The Hawthorns, West Bromwich Albion

When I started following English football, West Bromwich Albion were in the second division. Although they were promoted to the top-tier of English football in 1976, there have been a few ups and downs since then, and they have somehow

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Brunton Park, Carlisle

In his book on English football grounds, Simon Inglis describes Brunton Park in Carlisle as “A frontier post guarded only by sheep”. From the main stand, I can, indeed, to my left see sheep grassing on the other side of

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St. James Park, Exeter

Having visited Bristol Rovers, a “homeless” team on the Tuesday, I moved on to something almost just as extraordinary. Exeter City, a club saved, owned and run by a supporters’ trust. The story of the supporters’ take-over is quite remarkable.

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