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Home grounds

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Home grounds

Post  oldblackcat on 2017-10-29, 6:49 pm

Was just reading an old book by club historian Rob Mason which had old photos of where our old grounds were and thought I would share them with everyone on here,adding a few other photos you may find interesting...

In 1879/80 our first ground was Blue House Field,Hendon the site of which is now Valley Road infants school

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Around about this time we also played a couple of games just up the road at the cedars

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At the start of the 1882/83 season we moved to Groves Field,Ashbrooke

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Then at the start of the 1883/84 season the club moved north of the river to Horatio Street,Roker a ground often known as "the Clay Dolly Field".The pitch is long gone and like Roker Park became houses but you can still have a drink in the Wolsey pub which the players used as a changing room in those days.

In Sept 1884 Sunderland moved to "Abbs Field" Fulwell (a couple of goal kicks away from Where the Fulwell end was at Roker Park) and was enclosed so for the first time the club could prosper by taking gate money instead of a collection.

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In 1886 the club moved again To Newcastle Road.Here in 1886/87 the famous red and white shirts were worn for the first time.Our first game in the league took place here on Sept 13th 1890 and was a defeat 2-3 to Burnley. Whilst playing here from 1891/92 to 1895/96 we suffered 1 league defeat in 63 games and only lost 9 home games in 8 years (114 games).We became the first team to score 100 league goals in a season and the only team to date to win the league with a 100% home record winning every home game.Also England played an international here against Wales winning 4-1.

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Below is the painting by Thomas Hemy  which hangs in the foyer of the SOL and is said to be the oldest football painting in the world and said to be of the match of "the team of all talents" and Aston Villa at Newcastle Road
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In Sept 1898 Sunderland moved to the famous Roker Park.The stadium took less than a year to build,with the wooden stands taking 3 months to erect.Capacity was said to be 34,000 and both ends were uncovered and known as the North and South ends,with the north end (later Fulwell) also known as the top end. Roker Park would always be renowned for the quality of the playing surface,which began with the import of finest quality Irish turf that was so good it was 30 years until it was relayed.In 1899 England played an international here against Northern Ireland and chalked up a record 13-2 win.

Below a picture or Roker Park in the 70's with the full size Roker end

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A view of the Fulwell end

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The last game at Roker was a friendly v Liverpool in 1997 before moving to the SOL.Below is a picture showing the construction of the SOL with Roker Park in the back ground and then a picture of the fully completed SOL and Roker Park before demolition

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and my favorite pic of the SOL with the search lights on

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and one of the best derby goals scored there Very Happy

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Re: Home grounds

Post  cyprussyd on 2017-10-29, 6:59 pm

Great post OBC and I love listening to Mason

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Re: Home grounds

Post  Billy D on 2017-10-29, 7:34 pm

Excellent stuff that.
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Re: Home grounds

Post  Hieronymus on 2017-10-29, 7:51 pm

Great post OBC. Thank you for reminding us all that the club has existed for a long time and, despite the trials and tribulatons we are enduring right now, I am sure it will be around long after we are all gone Smile
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