What happens to old football grounds?

On my drive to work each day, I pass the ‘old’ Ordnance Survey site. We moved out of our former head office in 2010 and the buildings have long since been demolished, with the Compass Point housing estate emerging in its place. As you read this article, hundreds of changes will be taking place across Great Britain. We live in a world that is constantly evolving, from news-worthy changes such as the demolition of the towers at Didcot power station, to the more subtle as a building changes use from a pub into a convenience store.


Ordnance Survey’s former head office

Our master map of the country contains an amazing 460,000,000 features and the database processes around 10,000 changes a day. Our surveyors and our Flying Unit are constantly travelling the length and breadth of Britain to capture these changes and ensure they’re on the map.

One of the less frequent changes that they capture, but that often leads to a huge redevelopment, can be from the sites of vacated football grounds. West Ham are due to move into the former Olympic Stadium in Stratford in 2016 – and they’re just the latest in a series of clubs that have been rebuilding or relocating in the last 20 or so years.

But what happens to the former clubs? And how long does it take to forget what used to be there? We’ve picked the sites of eight former football grounds and shown how they look today. Shown in our most detailed OS MasterMap product, some of the sites are still recognisably in the shape of a football pitch, whilst others have been totally transformed. Take a look – can you tell us the names of the grounds that used to be there? Post your answers on the blog.

Old Football Grounds

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3 Responses

  1. Well done to our Twitter followers who have so far correctly identified:

    2. The Dell, Southampton

    4. Manor Ground, Oxford United

    5. ‘Highbury’, Arsenal (or Arsenal Stadium in Highbury)

  2. Christopher Hilton

    I can add a few more:
    1. Eastville, Bristol Rovers
    [2. The Dell, Southampton]
    3. The Baseball Ground, Derby County
    [4. Manor Ground, Oxford United]
    [5. ‘Highbury’, Arsenal (or Arsenal Stadium in Highbury)]
    6. Burnden Park, Bolton Wanderers
    8. Ayresome Park, Middlesbrough

    No.7 eludes me right now, though!

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