Friday, July 13, 2012

13 July 2003 - The Hammer Falls On Maine Road

On 13 July 2003, Manchester City auctioned off their Maine Road stadium in bits and pieces, raising approximately £400,000 for charity.

City had used Maine Road since its construction in 1923. With an original capacity of 84,000, it set the record for a club ground when 84,569 people watched City beat Stoke in the FA Cup on 3 March 1934. It also set the club ground record for a league match, but not for City--a crowd of 83,260 saw a 1-1 draw between Arsenal and Manchester United, who were using Maine Road while repairing Old Trafford from damage suffered during World War II. But it gradually converted to an all-seater by 1994, which reduced its capacity to 35,150.

Although City considered plans to expand the stadium, they decided instead to move to the City of Manchester Stadium after the 2002-03 season. With Maine Road slated for destruction, the club held an auction for everything in the ground, including the doors, seats, turnstiles, and office furniture. They even sold the pitch itself for £10 a square foot.

In all, the auction raised close to £400,000, which the club donated to charity.

The stadium was demolished in 2004 and the site is now the location of a housing development.

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