The Sheffield Sports Stadium - November 1927
The following report appeared in the Sheffield Telegraph dated Monday 28th November 1927. It promised that a big stadium was to be built in Sheffield that will hold 30,000 people. It also said that it was "one of the greatest developments Sheffield sport has known for many years"
I am not sure what went wrong with these grand proposals but 86 years on, the Sheffield Sports Stadium is a far smaller affair
"Owlerton Stadium, sometimes referred to as Sheffield Sports Stadium, is a greyhound racing track in Owlerton near Hillsborough in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England. The stadium is also home to the Sheffield Tigers Speedway team and hosts BriSCA Formula One stock car racing events. The stadium has a total capacity for 4,000 spectators."
As the recent debacle at Don Valley Stadium demonstrates, Sheffield has always had problems with the development of multi-purpose sports-grounds and stadia. I would like to know why the original proposals never reached fruition: my guess is that the "large number of small shareholders" who the promoters hoped to attract into the development failed to materialise, and so the plans had to be re-drawn to a far smaller scale. It was also as the report suggests a totally private venture with no public funding, a stark contrast to today's stadiums. No indication is given for the costs of construction, but they may well have been substantial if they were going to accommodate that many people.
This guess does have a basis. The report states that the stadium would be ready for the spring of 1928, but it did not open until the following year. And the first NGRC greyhound race was not held until 1932, a delay of nearly five years
The next cutting is from The Times dated 30th March 1946 when an application was made to the Stock Exchange for permission to deal in issued shared capital. The interesting point to note is that profits have shown almost uninterrupted growth over the twelve year period and that proposals were made to increase the number of greyhound meetings to over 100 a year beginning in April 1947.
If anyone can add anything to the report please contact me
Photo taken by Mick Knapton April 2008 - accessed from Wikipedia
1903 map of the site of The Sheffield Sports Stadium - it was just flat fields
(From The Sheffield History Forum)
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This page was last updated on 29/02/16 05:20