Selhurst Park

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Selhurst Park
The Eagles
Selhurst Park Holmesdale Stand.jpg
Selhurst Park in 2015
Selhurst Park
Full nameSelhurst Park
Location Selhurst
London, SE25
Coordinates 51°23′54″N0°5′8″W / 51.39833°N 0.08556°W / 51.39833; -0.08556 Coordinates: 51°23′54″N0°5′8″W / 51.39833°N 0.08556°W / 51.39833; -0.08556
Public transit Overground roundel (no text).svg National Rail logo.svg Norwood Junction
National Rail logo.svg Selhurst
National Rail logo.svg Thornton Heath
Owner Crystal Palace
Capacity 25,486 [1]
Field size101 by 68 metres (110.5 yd × 74.4 yd) [1]
Surface Desso GrassMaster
Scoreboard JumboTron
Broke ground1922 / 1923
OpenedAugust 1924
Renovated1983, 1995, 2013, 2014
Expanded1969, 1994
Construction cost £30,000
Architect Archibald Leitch
Structural engineerHumphreys of Kensington
Crystal Palace (1924–present)
Charlton Athletic (1985–1991)
Wimbledon (1991–2003)

Selhurst Park is a football stadium in Selhurst in the London Borough of Croydon which is the home ground of Crystal Palace Football Club. The stadium was designed by Archibald Leitch and opened in 1924. It has hosted international football as well as games for the 1948 Summer Olympics, and was shared by Charlton Athletic from 1985 to 1991 and Wimbledon from 1991 to 2003.



In 1922 the site, a former brickfield, was bought from the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway Company for £2,750. The club had been pursuing a deal for the ground as early as 25 February 1919. [2] The stadium, designed by Scottish stadium architect Archibald Leitch, was constructed by Humphreys of Kensington (a firm regularly used by Leitch) for around £30,000, and was officially opened by the Lord Mayor of London on 30 August 1924. [3] There was then only one stand, the present Main Stand, but this was unfinished due to industrial action; Crystal Palace played Sheffield Wednesday and lost 0–1 in front of 25,000 fans. [2]

Two years later, on St David's Day in 1926, England played Wales in an international at the stadium. [3] England amateur matches and various other finals were also staged there, [3] as were other sports including boxing, bicycle polo (in the late 1940s) and cricket and music concerts (in the 1980s). In addition to this, it hosted two games for the 1948 Summer Olympics. [3] [4]

In 1953, the stadium's first floodlights were installed consisting of numerous poles around the 3 sides of terracing and four roof mounted installations on the Main Stand, [3] but were replaced nine years later by floodlights mounted on pylons in each corner and six installations on the Main Stand roof. Real Madrid marked the occasion by playing under the new set of bulbs – a real footballing coup at the time for third division Palace, as it was Real's first ever match in London. [2] [3]

The ground remained undeveloped until 1969, when Palace were promoted to Division One (then the highest tier of English football) for the first time. The Arthur Wait Stand was built, and is named after the club's long-serving chairman, who was a builder by trade and was often seen working on the site himself. [3] Arthur Wait was notable for overseeing Palace's rise from the 4th to the 1st Division in the 1960s. The Whitehorse Lane end was given a new look when a "second tier" of terracing, brick-built refreshments and toilets were provided along the top.

The Safety of Grounds Act required the Holmesdale Road terrace (the preferred stand for the Crystal Palace supporters) to be split into three sections for safety reasons. The remaining poorer facilities were mainly where opposition supporters were situated. New facilities were subsequently built at the back of the Holmesdale Stand. In the summer of 1981, the Main Stand terraced enclosure was redesigned and refitted with seating. This year also saw Palace sell the back of the Whitehorse Lane terrace and adjacent land to supermarket retailer Sainsbury's for £2m, to help their financial problems. [3] The size of the terrace at this end was effectively halved.

Charlton Athletic moved into the stadium as temporary tenants in 1985, and became with Palace the first league clubs in England to agree such a ground-sharing scheme. [3] The following year, chairman Ron Noades purchased the stadium from the club as a means of raising revenue. In the summer of 1990, the lower half of the Arthur Wait Stand was converted into all-seater with the assistance of Football Trust Grant Aid, following the Taylor Report into the Hillsborough Disaster. Two rows of executive boxes (48 in total) were constructed above the Whitehorse Lane terrace (on the roof of Sainsbury's supermarket) in 1991 and this was subsequently roofed and made all-seater in the summer of 1993.

Charlton moved back to The Valley via West Ham's Boleyn Ground, and Wimbledon F.C. replaced them as tenants in 1991. [3] The Holmesdale terrace was demolished in 1994 and replaced a year later with a two-tiered 8,500 capacity stand. [3] The roof cladding of the main stand was also replaced, the previous one having started to leak. Some 25 years on, this remains the most recent major work to be carried out at Selhurst Park.

When Mark Goldberg bought Crystal Palace, he bought just the club. Former Palace chairman Ron Noades retained ownership of the Selhurst Park ground, having purchased it from the club in 1986. Chairman Simon Jordan took out a ten-year lease on the ground upon his purchase of the club in 2000, and Noades received rent from Palace. Wimbledon relocated to Milton Keynes in 2003, [3] a section of their fans already having decamped to the newly established AFC Wimbledon in protest, when the old club were given permission by the FA to move in 2002.

Palace chairman Jordan stated that he had completed a purchase of the freehold of Selhurst Park from Altonwood Limited (Ron Noades' company) for £12m in October 2006. However, Simon Jordan never owned the freehold or had any interest in it and his reasons for claiming he had bought it are unknown. Ownership was in fact held by Selhurst Park Limited, a joint venture between HBOS and the Rock property empire owned by Paul Kemsley, a former director of Tottenham Hotspur. In April 2008, a 25-year lease was granted to Crystal Palace at an annual rent of £1.2m.

The Rock Group went into administration in June 2009, the management of the freehold was taken on by PwC acting on behalf of Lloyds Bank, which now own HBOS. PwC expected to sell it within two years. [5] The club and Selhurst Park stadium were purchased by the CPFC 2010 consortium in June 2010, leading to the stadium and Football Club being united in a company for the first time since 1998.

January 2011 saw CPFC 2010 announce plans to redevelop the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, the club's original home, in five years' time. However, opposition from Crystal Palace residents and Bromley council have seen the plans become increasingly infeasible, resulting in suggestions that Selhurst Park should be redeveloped gradually similar to the Molineux stadium (home to Wolves).[ citation needed ]

In June 2012, Crystal Palace co-chairman Steve Parish approached Rugby Union team London Welsh about a possible ground-share. London Welsh's promotion to the English Premiership was in doubt, as their plans to play their matches at Kassam Stadium were deemed unsuitable by the RFU. [6]

In 2018, Crystal Palace 2010 announced that a £100m renovation of Selhurst was imminent, to bring it closer in terms of quality to modern Premier League grounds.

Selhurst has been used by Apple TV in the US series Ted Lasso.

The stands

Selhurst Park Stadium.jpg

Holmesdale Road Stand

Capacity of stand: 8,329

The Holmesdale is a double-tiered stand (Lower tier 5,510, Upper tier 2,819) on the south side of the stadium. Built 1994-95, this is the newest stand in the stadium, replacing the previous terrace end. It forms the SE end of the stadium.

Arthur Wait Stand

Capacity of stand: 9,574

Part of this stand seats the away supporters (approx. 3,000), named after the then chairman, and opened in 1969. It forms the NE side of the stadium.

Main Stand

Capacity of stand: 5,460 + Press Seats (63)

This original stand opened in 1924 includes the Directors Box, new offices/Main Entrance were built at the rear of the stand during the nineties, meanwhile the exterior of the Main Stand has been re-cladded in white replacing the old original blue painted corrugated iron. New seats were also installed during the summer of 2013, several lounges/Bars and a restaurant are also within the stand. With new investment confirmed the club put forward plans for this stand to be redeveloped into a three-tier structure, building over, then removing, the current stand. Plans for a new 13,500-seater Main Stand (extending overall stadium capacity to 34,000) were approved at a Croydon Council meeting on 19 April 2018. [7] The new stand will feature an all-glass frontage, inspired in by the original Crystal Palace. [8] The club plans for the work to start in summer 2019 with the new stand to be ready in time for the 2021–22 season.

Whitehorse Lane Stand

Whitehorse Lane Stand with the Jumbotron UnitedKingdom-69 (29961618176).jpg
Whitehorse Lane Stand with the Jumbotron

Capacity of stand: 2,219 + seating for executive boxes (480)

The Whitehorse Lane stand is otherwise known as the Family Stand for Crystal Palace supporters. The stand also includes 24 luxury Executive Boxes. It forms the NW end of the stadium.



SeasonAverage AttendanceLeagueReference
2014-15 24,421 Premier League [9]
2013-14 24,375 Premier League [10]
2012-13 17,280 Football League Championship [11]
2011-12 15,219 Football League Championship [12]
2010-11 15,351 Football League Championship [13]
2009-10 14,945 Football League Championship [14]
2008-09 15,220 Football League Championship [15]
2007-08 16,030 Football League Championship [16]
2006-07 17,541 Football League Championship [17]
2005-06 19,457 Football League Championship [18]
2004-05 24,108 Premier League [19]


The record attendance in Selhurst Park was achieved in 1979 when 51,801 people saw Crystal Palace defeat Burnley F.C. 2–0 to clinch the Football League Second Division championship title. The ground also holds the record for Division Four (now League Two in the English football pyramid) attendance when Crystal Palace played local rivals Millwall F.C. in 1961 after 37,774 people turned out for the game.[ citation needed ]

Selhurst Park recorded the lowest attendance for a Premier League game - 3,039 for Wimbledon v. Everton on 26 January 1993. The game finished 3-1 to Everton. [20]

See also

Related Research Articles

Crystal Palace F.C. Association football club in England

Crystal Palace Football Club is a professional football club based in Selhurst, South London, England, who currently compete in the Premier League, the highest level of English football. Although their official founding date is 1905, the club claim to be a continuation of the original amateur Crystal Palace football club first established in 1861, after historians discovered a direct lineage through their ownership under the same Crystal Palace Company. Both the amateur and professional clubs played inside the grounds of the Crystal Palace Exhibition building, with the professional club using the FA Cup Final stadium for its home games until 1915, when they were forced to leave due to the outbreak of the First World War. In 1924, they moved to their current home at Selhurst Park.

Wimbledon F.C. Football club

Wimbledon Football Club was an English football club formed in Wimbledon, south-west London, in 1889 and based at Plough Lane from 1912 to 1991. Founded as Wimbledon Old Centrals, the club were a non-League team for most of their history. Nicknamed "the Dons" and latterly also "the Wombles", they won eight Isthmian League titles, the FA Amateur Cup in 1963 and three successive Southern League championships between 1975 and 1977, and were then elected to the Football League. The team rose quickly from obscurity during the 1980s and were promoted to the then top-flight First Division in 1986, just four seasons after being in the Fourth Division.

The Valley (London)

The Valley is a 27,111 capacity sports stadium located in Charlton, London, England and has been the home of Charlton Athletic Football Club since the 1920s, with a period of exile between 1985 and 1992. It is served by Charlton railway station, which is less than a five-minute walk away from the stadium. An alternative route is the Jubilee line; exiting at North Greenwich, and changing for route 161, 472 and 486 buses, which stop outside the stadium.


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Griffin Park Football stadium in London, England

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Plough Lane (1912–98) Former football stadium

Plough Lane was a football stadium in Wimbledon, south west London. For nearly eighty years it was the home ground of Wimbledon Football Club, from September 1912 until May 1991, when the club moved their first team home matches to Selhurst Park as part of a groundshare agreement with Crystal Palace. Both clubs' reserve teams then used Plough Lane as their home ground until 1998, when the site was sold to Safeway, who intended to redevelop the site as a supermarket. Whilst site redevelopment plans were negotiated, the stadium remained derelict for several years until it was finally demolished in 2002. When permission for a supermarket was ultimately refused by the local authority, Safeway sold the site and it was eventually developed as a private housing development known as Reynolds Gate, named after former Wimbledon F.C. striker Eddie Reynolds, which was completed in 2008.

Underhill Stadium

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Glanford Park

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Ronald Geoffrey Noades was an English businessman, best known for his investments in football clubs. He was the chairman of Southall, Wimbledon, Crystal Palace and finally Brentford.

Blundell Park Football ground in Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire, England and home to Grimsby Town Football Club

Blundell Park is a football ground in Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire, England and home to Grimsby Town Football Club. The stadium was built in 1899, but only one of the original stands remains. The current capacity of the ground is 9,052, after being made all-seater in summer 1995, reducing the number from around 27,000. Several relegations in previous years meant the expansion seating was also taken away; that reduced the capacity further from around 12,000 to what it is now.

Croydon Common Athletic Ground

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Stadium MK Football stadium in Milton Keynes, England

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Crystal Palace Football Club is an English professional association football club based in Selhurst, South London, England. Although their official founding date is 1905, the club recognise their true founding date to be 1861, when the original amateur Crystal Palace football team was first established at the site of the Crystal Palace Exhibition building, after historians discovered a direct lineage through their ownership under the same Crystal Palace Company. The amateur and professional clubs both played their home games inside the grounds of the Palace. The amateur club shared the cricket pitch in the Crystal Palace Park with the Crystal Palace Cricket Club, and the professional club played at the FA Cup Final stadium until 1915, when they were forced to leave due to the outbreak of the First World War. They moved to their current home at Selhurst Park in 1924.

A large number of English football clubs have ongoing schemes to redevelop existing grounds, or to move to newly constructed stadiums. A trend towards all-seater stadiums was initially prescribed by the Taylor Report, and was originally a condition only of Premier League admission. It has now become a requirement that within three years of a club's first promotion to the Championship all paying spectators are seated, even if the club is subsequently relegated. This page provides an (incomplete) list and description of those clubs who have planned new stadiums or refurbishments, or who have already moved/refurbished since around the time of the Taylor Report.

Stephen Parish is the part-owner and chairman of Crystal Palace Football Club.

South London derby

South London derby is the name given to a football derby contested by any two of Charlton Athletic, Crystal Palace, Millwall and AFC Wimbledon, the four professional Football Association clubs in South London, England. It is sometimes more specifically called the South East London derby when played between Charlton and Millwall. The close geographical proximity of all the teams contributes significantly to the rivalries.

Relocation of Wimbledon F.C. to Milton Keynes Controversial relocation of a sports team

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Brighton & Hove Albion F.C.–Crystal Palace F.C. rivalry

The Brighton–Crystal Palace rivalry, sometimes nicknamed the A23 derby and the M23 derby, is the rivalry between English football teams Brighton & Hove Albion and Crystal Palace.

The 2013–14 season was Crystal Palace's first season back in the Premier League after eight years. After a poor start to the season which saw Ian Holloway resign and Tony Pulis take over as manager, Palace recovered and finished in 11th position. The club also competed in the League Cup and the FA Cup.


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  2. 1 2 3 Peskett, Roy (1969). The Crystal Palace Story. Roy Peskett Ltd. pp. 15–16, 78–80.
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  4. 1948 Summer Olympics official report. pp. 45–6.
  5. PwC kicks off sale of Kemsley’s trophy assets, The Times, 20 October 2009
  6. Palace make late bid to bring Premiership rugby to Selhurst, Inside Croydon, 1 June 2012
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