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Saturday 27 September K.O. 12:45

History Of Goodison Park

History Of Goodison Park
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When the Safety of Sports Grounds Act came into effect in 1977, Goodison Park's capacity was greatly reduced from 56,000 to 35,000, mainly due to outdated entrances and exits. As a consequence, Everton had to part with £250,000 in order to boost capacity back up to 52,800. The 1986 figure stood at 53,419, of which 24,419 were seated.

In the early 1980's the original corrugated roofing of the Gwladys Street Stand was replaced by blue cladding, giving the roof a rich colourful look. Then, in 1987, the pitched roof was replaced by an upturned sloping roof extending out over the terracing below, which joined the roof of the Bullens Road, creating a continuous roof on two sides of the ground.

The next development was the conversion of Goodison to an all seater stadium, following the Taylor Report, in the aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster.

A shot of the church at Goodison from 1970A shot of the church at Goodison from 1970

This required the conversion of the paddock, enclosure and Gwladys Street terracing into seated accommodation. The Park End terracing remained temporarily but was only opened for big games. The reason for this was the intended redevelopment of the Park End. This came to fruition in the early part of 1994.

The last time spectators stood on the terrace was on 19th January at the FA Cup 3rd Round replay against Bolton. The old stand was pulled down during February, with construction beginning soon after. The new Stanley Park End stand is a single tier cantilever stand with a capacity of 6,000. The stand was opened on Saturday 17 September 1994 by David Hunt MP. A contribution of £1.3M was also given by the Football Trust.

The completion of the Park End brought Goodison Park's capacity up to 40,100, a figure exceeded at the time by only the projected capacities of Old Trafford and Anfield, neither of which were in such a confined area as Goodison Park.

The Park End under constructionThe Park End under construction

During the Premier League years there have been only superficial changes to the ground. The Club's focus has been on securing a new permanent home, with plans for a ground on the city's King's Dock in the late 1990s eventually falling foul of spiralling development costs.

A painstaking search for an alternative culminated with plans submitted as part of a three-way partnership with Knowsley Borough Council, Tesco and the Club for a retail and ground development in the Kirkby area of Merseyside.

In 2009, following an extensive review process, the plans were rejected by government.

Goodison remains largely unchanged since the development of the Park End stand - although terraced housing behind the new stand was purchased and demolished in the late 1990s to accomodate additional parking and the erection of a marquee that provides additional matchday hospitality facilities. The ground capacity is now 39,572.

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