I noticed a post on Owlstalk yesterday talking about a move into the East end of Sheffield next to Meadowhall. The big question is: Is Hillsborough redeveloped or is a move to the East end of Sheffield more beneficial?
If Hillsborough was to be redeveloped, the Leppings Lane should be the first part of the stadium to be redeveloped. Funny how the Leppings Lane was deemed to be dangerous and the cause of the disaster, but the stand still exists 25 years later, while other grounds that were death traps have been replaced long ago. I sat in the Leppings Lane stand as soon as I could walk and moved down to the terracing when I was a little older.
The Leppings Lane stand was probably the best view in the ground and I liked standing on the terrace, without fences and would still stand there today if I could. I have my own views on why the disaster happened and it doesn’t agree with the Tailor report or other so called enquiries. I am not going to go into this now, as this will side track the issue too much.
Safe standing areas
English Premier League clubs are now talking about bringing safe standing areas, if the Leppings Lane was to be redeveloped as per the World cup plans, I would put a safe standing area at the front of the stand.
Modern day football is much more than the weekly football match and there isn’t a great amount of room around the stadium to build additional facilities. If Wednesday were to get back into the Premier division, the ground would need expanding to 60K. Parking is shocking around the ground and I don’t think it is central enough in Sheffield.
If any body should be concerned about tradition it is me, my Great Grand parents back yard used to look onto the old Spion Kop. Wanting Wednesday to stay at Hillsborough, is as bad as voting Labour because your dad and granddad did, even though Labour no longer works for the working man. Originally when Wednesday left Olive grove, supporters voted to move to a more central site in the East End of Sheffield and their wishes were gone against.
East End of Sheffield
My preference would be for a new purpose built ground in the East end of Sheffield. I think a great site would be just over Tinsley roundabout on Sheffield rd, where there is a huge amount of land that has been derelict since the 1980’s. Transport links would be more superior here, as this site is located close to the M1, it would be quite iconic, because people would be able to view from the M1.
I don’t like the modern football grounds that look like space ships, I still think the ground could be built to look like a traditional football ground and I would like to see safe standing located all around the football ground. It would be great to stand on terraces down the side of the football ground.
A suitable area in the East end of Sheffield would have plenty of room to build additional facilities around the ground. The North stand looks great, but only the South Stand is up to modern day standards, with great facilities for before and after the match. The KOP was built on a hill, so all the available space underneath it is unavailable for use.
All the best