Roker Park Conservation Area, Sunderland

4.3
#3 of 7 in Wildlife in Tyne and Wear
Roker Park was an English football stadium situated in Roker, Sunderland. The stadium was the home of the English football club Sunderland A.F.C. from 1898 to 1997 before the club moved to the Stadium of Light. Near the end of the stadium's history, its capacity was around 22,500 with only a small part of the stadium being seated. The stadium's capacity had been higher in previous years, attracting a record crowd of 75,118.
In the 1890s, the then Sunderland chairman and his brother decided to build a bigger ground for the club, to replace what was then the club's current ground at Newcastle Road. The club had negotiated to buy farmland that belonged to a Mr. Tennant and part of the agreement was that Sunderland would have to build a house on the site as well as their new stadium. Until this house was built, Sunderland still had to pay rent on the land.
Within a year of the land being bought, Roker Park had been built, with the wooden stands only taking three months to build. The Clock Stand had 32 steps, no seats and a crush barrier for safety. The turf was brought from Ireland, and lasted for 38 years. The pitch was designed to have a slight drop of about one foot from the centre of the pitch to each corner to help with drainage. On 10 September 1898 Roker Park was officially opened by Charles Vane-Tempest-Stewart, 6th Marquess of Londonderry. The first match at Roker Park was a friendly against Liverpool which Sunderland won 1–0, with Jim Leslie scoring the stadium's first ever goal.
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Roker Park Conservation Area Reviews

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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
99 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A great park just across from the sea. Lovely walks and a very pretty bandstand. I’m sure the gardens will be even more colourful in the summer.  more »
  • Nice park, well maintained. Walked into park from beach. Good play areas if you have kids with you. Quite hilly so be prepared. Bandstand looked good.  more »
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