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Football Grounds of Britain Paperback – 14 May 1996
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From the Back Cover
In this completely new third edition, Simon Inglis has revised and updated his original classic to take into account the demands of the Lord Justice Taylor's Report following the 1989 Hillsborough disaster and the ever-changing football scene of the 1990s.
Old stands have come tumbling down, terraces have been replaced by seats, and a host of long cherished notions have been challenged by the onset of modernization and redevelopment. Yet 'Football Grounds of Britain', with its new photographs and many additional entries, continues to be the first point of reference for all football supporters, stadium enthusiasts and those who cherish our national sporting heritage.
"An essential, fascinating and standard work… every soccer fan should have one"
"We should be grateful to Simon Inglis for doing such a magnificent job of chronicling this fantastic heritage while it still exists…"
MIKE TICHER, 'When Saturday Comes'
"Superbly illustrated, sharply written, it is simply the most fascinating book on football I have ever read"
DAVID RANDALL,'The Observer'
About the Author
Simon Inglis is a writer, broadcaster and consultant on football and stadium-related matters. Born and brought up in Birmingham, he fell in love with Aston Villa and Villa Park at the age of seven. He graduated in history and the history of architecture from University College London, before beginning his journalistic career in Manchester. His first book was ‘The Usborne Guide to Soccer’, followed by ‘The Football Grounds of England and Wales’ (CollinsWillow, 1983).
Top customer reviews
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The book devotes a chapter to each club, describing its current stadium and also its past. Inglis has produced an important work of history that also takes the architecture seriously. But it's not dry. He captures the distinct tradition and style of each club, whether it be the heroic battlers who kept Charlton Athletic going and saw their return to the Valley or the aristocrats at Ibrox Park and Goodison. Inglis' personality comes through strongly and many of the photo's are outstanding.
The first edition was published in 1983 and broadly coincided with the the start of the widespead upgrading that followed decades of inactivity during which grounds had become out of date, scruffy, in most cases uncomfortable, and sometimes treacherously unsafe.
Inglis is now a member of, or consults to, various organisations responsible for the country's football and its stadiums. My suspicion is that he has been instrumental in shaping these changes rather than simply passively documenting them. If so he deserves the thanks of all football fans and a knighthood.
I have minor complaints, particularly with the third edition published in 1996 which bears all the hallmarks of having been put together hurriedly. At the time the book went to print clubs were announcing relocations and upgrades on virtually a daily basis. It must have been hard to find a proper point to cut off and publish.
Anyway, suffice it to say the book is littered with spelling errors and unnecessary hyphens; the Eurostar that passes Stamford Bridge is sleek not sleak p125 and the Rovers from Ewood Park are Blackburn, not Black-burn, p79.
Inglis has a thing about floodlights; each to his own, they don't do much for me. For future editions, I'd be delighted if he devoted more attention to pitch dimensions; the size and shape of a the ground influences the atmosphere and style of play. In my view the Highbury pitch,for example, is too cramped. Also I think he should deal with the new issue of the towering stands that reduce the sunlight on the pitch. The contrast between the sunlit and shadowed areas can upset players, spectators and tv viewers during a game. Also the lack of sunlight can damage the pitch, witness the problems experienced at the 'theatre of dreams' where United are on about their seventh pitch in the past two years. (This is from memory and could be wrong, it's hard to check the facts from Indonesia.)
Derek Clark (who hails from nearby Selhurst Park)