Selhurst Park Stadium, located in Selhurst, London Borough of Croydon, is the home field of Premier League team Crystal Palace. The stadium was designed by Archibald Leitch and opened in 1924. Wimbledon had it from 1991 to 2003, and Charlton Athletic had it from 1985 to 1991. It has hosted international football matches as well as Summer Olympics competitions in 1948.
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History on the Selhurst Park Stadium
Crystal Palace F.C. paid £2,750 to the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway Company in 1922 to acquire a former brickfield site. Since February 25th, 1919, the club had been looking to purchase the field. The Scottish stadium architect Archibald Leitch’s design was built for about £30,000 by Humphreys of Kensington, a company Leitch frequently used. On August 30, 1924, the Lord Mayor of London formally opened the stadium. Due to labor disputes, there was only one stand available at the time, the current Main Stand, and Crystal Palace played The Wednesday in front of 25,000 spectators before losing 0-1 to the opposition.
The stadium hosted an international match between England and Wales on St. David’s Day, two years later. There were also England amateur matches and other finals, as well as other sporting events like boxing, cricket, and bicycle polo (in the late 1940s) (in the 1980s). In addition, it served as the site of two Olympic games in 1948.
The first floodlights in the stadium were installed in 1953 and consisted of numerous poles around the three sides of the terracing and four roof-mounted installations on the Main Stand. Nine years later, these floodlights were replaced by pylon-mounted floodlights in each corner and six installations on the roof of the Main Stand. Real Madrid celebrated by playing in front of the brand-new set of lights, which was a major sporting victory for third division Palace at the time because it was Real’s first ever game in London.
Until 1969, when Palace were first promoted to Division One (at the time, English football’s top division), the field remained undeveloped. In honor of the club’s longtime chairman, Arthur Wait, a builder by trade who frequently could be seen working on the site himself, the Arthur Wait Stand was constructed. In the 1960s, Arthur Wait is remembered for directing Palace’s ascent from the Fourth Division to the First Division. A “second tier” of terracing, brick-built refreshments, and restrooms were added to the top, giving the Whitehorse Lane end a fresh look.
The Holmesdale Road terrace, the preferred area for Crystal Palace supporters, had to be divided into three sections per the Safety of Grounds Act. Supporters of the opposition were mostly located in the remaining, less desirable facilities. Later, new facilities were constructed behind the Holmesdale Stand. The Main Stand terraced enclosure underwent a redesign and seating upgrade in the summer of 1981. As a further measure to address their financial issues, Palace sold the rear of the Whitehorse Lane terrace and adjacent land to supermarket chain Sainsbury’s for £2 million this year. The terrace at this end was effectively cut in half.
In 1985, Charlton Athletic and Crystal Palace became the first English league clubs to agree to a ground-sharing arrangement when they moved in as temporary tenants to the stadium. In order to increase revenue the following year, chairman Ron Noades bought the stadium from the team. Following the Taylor Report into the Hillsborough Disaster, the lower half of the Arthur Wait Stand was converted into an all-seater structure in the summer of 1990 with the help of Football Trust Grant Aid. In 1991, 48 executive boxes were built over the Whitehorse Lane terrace (on the roof of Sainsbury’s supermarket). In the summer of 1993, the terrace was roofed and converted to an all-seater layout.
Wimbledon F.C. took over as tenants of The Valley in 1991 after Charlton had returned there via West Ham’s Boleyn Ground. The Holmesdale terrace was destroyed in 1994, and a two-tiered 8,500 capacity stand was built in its place the following year. The main stand’s roof cladding was also changed because the old one had started to leak. This is still the most recent significant work to be completed at Selhurst Park, some 25 years later.
Mark Goldberg only purchased Crystal Palace when he purchased the organization. Ron Noades, a former Palace chairman, still owns the Selhurst Park stadium after buying it from the team in 1986. After purchasing Crystal Palace in 2000, Simon Jordan entered into a ten-year lease on the property, and Noades received rent from the team. A portion of Wimbledon’s supporters had already defected to the newly founded AFC Wimbledon in protest when the old club was given permission by the FA to move in 2002, which led to the 2003 relocation of Wimbledon to Milton Keynes.
In October 2006, Ron Noades’ company, Altonwood Limited, sold the freehold of Selhurst Park to Palace Chairman Jordan for £12 million. However, Jordan never had any ownership or interest in the freehold, and it is unclear why he claimed to have purchased it. In reality, Paul Kemsley, a former director of Tottenham Hotspur, owned the Rock property empire through a joint venture with HBOS called Selhurst Park Limited, which held ownership of the property. Crystal Palace was given a 25-year lease in April 2008 for the sum of £1.2 million per year.
When The Rock Group entered administration in June 2009, PwC assumed management of the freehold on behalf of Lloyds Bank, which is now the owner of HBOS. PwC anticipated selling it in two years. The stadium and Football Club were combined in a single company for the first time since 1998 after the CPFC 2010 consortium acquired the club and Selhurst Park in June 2010.
CPFC 2010 announced plans to renovate the club’s original home, the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, in January 2011. Selhurst Park has been suggested to be gradually redeveloped in a manner akin to the Molineux stadium due to opposition from Crystal Palace residents and Bromley council, which has caused the plans to become increasingly impractical (home to Wolves).
Co-chairman of Crystal Palace Steve Parish approached Rugby Union team London Welsh about a potential ground-share in June 2012. London Welsh’s promotion to the English Premiership was in jeopardy because the RFU disapproved of their plans to hold their games at Kassam Stadium.
Selhurst Park will undergo a £100 million renovation in 2018, the club announced, to bring it up to the standards of current Premier League stadiums.
Stands of Selhurst Park Stadium
Holmesdale Road Stand
Having two tiers, the Holmesdale stand (Lower tier 5,510, Upper tier 2,819). The newest stand in the stadium was constructed in 1994, taking the place of the former terrace end. It makes up the stadium’s south-east corner. Stand capacity: 8,329
Arthur Wait Stand
The opposition fans are seated in part of this stand (approx. 3,000). It debuted in 1969 and was given the chairman of the Palace’s chairman name. It makes up the stadium’s northeastern side. Stand capacity: 9,574
The South West side of the stadium is made up of this original stand, which was built in 1924. In the 1990s, new offices and the Main Entrance were constructed at the back of the stand, which includes the Directors Box. The stand’s original blue painted corrugated iron exterior has been replaced with a white re-cladding. Additionally, during the summer of 2013, new seating was installed, including a number of lounges/bars and a restaurant inside the stand.
The club proposed plans for this stand to be renovated into a three-tier structure, building over, then demolishing, the existing stand, after new investment was confirmed. On April 19, 2018, Croydon Council approved plans for a new 13,500-seat Main Stand, bringing the stadium’s capacity to 34,000. A frontage made entirely of glass, modeled after the original Crystal Palace, will be present on the new stand. The club had anticipated that the work would begin in the summer of 2019 and that the new stand would be ready in time for the 2021–22 season, but as of now, no work has begun. Stand capacity: 5,460 plus press seats (63)
Whitehorse Lane Stand
It was redeveloped in the early 1980s after being constructed initially as a standing terrace. The Family Stand is another name for it among Crystal Palace supporters. There are 24 opulent Executive Boxes on the stand. It makes up the stadium’s northwestern corner. Stand capacity: 2,219 plus executive box seating (480)
How to Get to Selhurst Park Stadium
Arriving from City Center to Selhurst Park Stadium
The best way to get to Selhurst Park, which is located 8 miles from the heart of London, is by overground trains. Avoid the mistake of visiting Crystal Palace station because it is far from the ground. For more details on rail services to the stadium, see the section on public transportation.
Arriving to Selhurst Park with Public Transportation
London Underground to Selhurst Park Stadium
Selhurst Park station [SRS]: The station is ten minutes’ walk from the stadium and can be found at Selhurst Road, London, SE25 5QB.
Thornton Heath station [TTH]: The station is 15 minutes’ walk away at Brigstock Road, Thornton Heath, Surrey, CR7 8RX.
Norwood Junction station [NOR]: It takes 15 minutes to walk to the station from Station Road in South Norwood, SE25 5AG.
National Rail to Selhurst Park Stadium
London Liverpool Street station [LST]: The station is located at Bishopsgate, London EC2M 7PY; 20 mins away.
The London Kings Cross station [KGX]: The station is located at Euston Road, NW1 2SA; 4 miles away.
London Euston station [EUS]: The station is located at Euston Road, NW1 2AE which is 3.8 miles from the stadium.
The stadium is passed by Routes X68, 50, 75, 157, 198, 250, and 468.
Arriving by Car at Selhurst Park Stadium
Click here to view Selhurst Park Stadium on Google Maps.
Depending on the location, the M25 will connect to many of the following roads as it circles London:
- From North: A23; passing Dulwich, Brixton and South London
- From South: A23, A22, M23; passing Hooley, Caterham, and Gatwick Airport
- From East: A232, A20; passing Sidcup and West Wickham
- From West: A3, A232; passing Sutton
From City Centre
The stadium is 11 miles southeast of Central London and located in Thornton Heath, just north of Croydon. The stadium is