History Of Goodison Park
Despite the revolutionary initial developments, it was not long before Goodison Park was improved even further. A new Bullens Road stand was built in 1895 at a cost of £3,407 and the open Goodison Road side was covered for £403, records show.
Meanwhile competition in the city was reaching peak levels. Everton were again runners up in both the league and FA Cup, while across Stanley Park, Liverpool won their first championship in 1901.
The Goodison Park of today really began to take shape after the turn of the century, beginning in 1907 with the building of a double-decker stand at the Park End, costing £13,000. In 1909, the large Main Stand on Goodison Road was built. Costing £28,000 it housed all the offices and players' facilities, and survived until 1971.
At the same time another £12,000 was spent on concreting over the terracing and replacing the cinder running track. A reporter from ‘Athletic News' wrote in the summer of 1909: "Visitors to Goodison Park will be astonished at the immensity of the new double-decker stand". The architect was Archibold Leitch, and the front balcony bore his criss-cross trademark, which can still be seen on the Bullens Road stand opposite.
Having regained its status as the best equipped ground in the nation, Everton hosted the 1910 Cup Final replay between Newcastle and Barnsley. A massive 69,000 attended. Then on 13 July 1913, Goodison became the first league venue to be visited by a ruling monarch, when George V and Queen Mary came to visit local schoolchildren at the ground.
It certainly wasn't just football that took place at Goodison though! During the First World War it was used by the Territorial Army for drill practice. Soon after, the US baseball teams Chicago White Sox and New York Giants played an exhibition match at the ground. One player reportedly managed to hit a ball right over the Main Stand.
The next big change took place in 1926, when at a cost of £30,000 another double-decker, similar to the Main Stand, was built on the Bullens Road Side opposite. Again, Leitch was the architect.
In the 1930s, Everton borrowed an idea from Aberdeen, who they had visited for a friendly. Pittodrie was the home to what were reputedly the first ever dug-outs for coaching staff. From Pittodrie and Goodison Park the idea soon spread, and now the covered dug-out is a feature of almost every ground worldwide.