Millmoor

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Millmoor Ground
Millmoor
Millmoor Stadium 2015.jpg
An abandoned Millmoor in 2015, Rotherham
Millmoor
LocationMillmoor Lane
Rotherham
England
Owner C F Booth
Capacity 8,300
Record attendance21,000 (Rotherham County FC vs Sheffield Wednesday, 1 November 1920) [1]
Field size110 by 72 yards (100.6 m × 65.8 m)
Construction
Renovated1920, 1951, 2004
Expanded1920
Tenants
Rotherham County F.C. (1907–1925)
Rotherham United F.C. (1925–2008)
Westfield United F.C. (2016–2017)

The Millmoor Ground, commonly known as Millmoor, is a football stadium in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England. It was the home ground of Rotherham County F.C. between 1907 and 1925 and then its successor Rotherham United F.C. until 2008. The stadium has had no professional tenant since, but has been in use again for local youth football since 2016. It has been described as 'the spiritual home' of Rotherham United. [2]

Contents

History

The stadium was in use during the 1890s, with Rotherham Church Institute using the ground in the Sheffield Association League. [3] [4] and presently has a capacity of around 8,300.

During the 1990s, relocation to a new all-seater stadium in Rotherham was considered, but the original preferred site for a new stadium had become unavailable by the time Rotherham won promotion to Division One in 2001, and so the club were faced with the need to develop a new all-seater stadium at Millmoor or elsewhere. Initially, the club chose to convert Millmoor into an all-seater stadium.

Redevelopment work was started on the ground, with a new main stand being built in place of the previous wooden main stand which was built in the 1950s. The new stand was planned to contain corporate facilities and bring the capacity back to over 10,000. The work was scheduled to finish in 2006, but faced a series of setbacks, one of which was Japanese knotweed being found on the site. The work was never finished and the main stand remains half-built. [2] Rotherham United have now moved to a new community stadium. In May 2011 Rotherham Titans and Rotherham Council announced a plan to allow the rugby union club to move into Millmoor. [5] After much speculation it was announced in December 2011 that the Titans would remain at Clifton Lane for the foreseeable future due to the deal falling through. [6]

Millmoor hosted a number of memorable Rotherham United games including a first leg of the inaugural Football League Cup final against Aston Villa in 1961, which Rotherham won 2–0.

On 22 September 2007, for Rotherham United's game against Notts County, it was a special day to celebrate 100 years at Millmoor. The game ended 11, with Peter Holmes scoring for the Millers. There were special articles in the matchday programme and a commemorative cover. There were balloons all around Millmoor, with the Millers' badge, and the words '100 Years at Millmoor'. Fans were urged to wear retro Rotherham United shirts in order to be entered into a raffle. Many fans were seen with new scarves with Rotherham United F.C. on one side and 1907–2007 on the other side.

In May 2008, Rotherham United were forced to leave Millmoor after talks with Ken Booth, owner of Millmoor, broke down. [7] The team played at the athletics Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield until 2012, when the club moved into a new community stadium back in Rotherham.

Despite this, Millmoor remains in existence more than a decade after the football club's departure and has been used for other sports purposes.

Structure and facilities

Tivoli End

The Tivoli was a favourite amongst the fans. The stand holds up to 2,700. It was a terrace but was later seated during the club's time in the Football League Championship.

Railway End

Away terrace in 1976 The Visitor's End at Millmoor, Rotherham - geograph.org.uk - 1229503.jpg
Away terrace in 1976

The Railway End is the away fans section where over 2,000 fans can be accommodated. This end is covered and all seated. An unusual feature is that away fans can only access this end by going down Millmoor Lane, which is a narrow alleyway. The acoustics on the railway end are said to be some of the best and fans can generate a lot of noise. If needed, away fans can be given additional seats in a section of the Millmoor Lane stand.

The railway referred to in the stand's name is the now closed line to the former Rotherham Westgate railway station.

Main stand

Stand under construction in 2005 Stand under construction - geograph.org.uk - 336903.jpg
Stand under construction in 2005

Redevelopment work was started on this stand, however that work has now ceased and in November 2007 the club confirmed that it had no intentions to complete this stand or modernise any part of the stadium due to the difficulty in reaching a deal to purchase the land surrounding Millmoor from the previous chairman. This dispute later led to Rotherham United moving away from the stadium. [1] The stand remains partly finished.

Millmoor Lane End

Opposite to the Main Stand is the Millmoor Lane side of the ground. It is split up into three sections:

Other uses

Greyhound racing took place at Millmoor Stadium from 11 May 1931 until 29 July 1933. The racing was independent (not affiliated to the sports governing body the National Greyhound Racing Club) and was known as a flapping track which was the nickname given to independent tracks. [8]

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References

  1. 1 2 "Vergane Glorie: Millmoor". Martijn Mureau. 23 March 2016.
  2. 1 2 "Abandoned but never forgotten – Millmoor the spiritual home of the Millers". The Yorkshire Post. Retrieved 24 October 2020.
  3. Sheffield Independent, 15 November 1897
  4. "Official website Rotherham United FC". 23 March 2016. Archived from the original on 22 March 2016.
  5. Rotherham Titans (6 October 2011). "Millmoor Deal A Step Nearer!". Rotherham Titans. Retrieved 22 June 2011.[ permanent dead link ]
  6. "Yorkshire Post Article". 17 December 2011.
  7. "End of an era: Millmoor farewell for Rotherham". The Yorkshire Post . 30 May 2008. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  8. Barnes, Julia (1988). Daily Mirror Greyhound Fact File. Ringpress Books. p. 422. ISBN   0-948955-15-5.

Coordinates: 53°25′42.12″N1°22′12.83″W / 53.4283667°N 1.3702306°W / 53.4283667; -1.3702306