Historian claims Gainsborough Trinity’s Northolme is world’s oldest serving single team ground

Gainsborough Trinity fans at the Northolme.Gainsborough Trinity fans at the Northolme.
Gainsborough Trinity fans at the Northolme.
The oldest club ground is Hallam FC at Sheffield dating back to 1860, the year they were formed.

However, due to landlord problems, the Hallam outfit left their initial Sandygate home in 1933, not returning until 1951.

Hallam FC is recognised to be the world’s second oldest club after Sheffield FC, who started in 1857.

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Therefore, for many years, Northwich Victoria claimed their Drill Field (home of Cheshire Rifle Volunteers) stadium was the oldest where they played without interruption since their start in 1874.

Hallam FC ground. Submitted by Simon Myers.Hallam FC ground. Submitted by Simon Myers.
Hallam FC ground. Submitted by Simon Myers.

This historic venue was sold in 2004 due to financial problems, like so many clubs for the building of the inevitable supermarket!

The Gainsborough club was started by the vicar of Holy Trinity Church for young parishioners – a similar beginning for current League clubs like Southampton, Everton, Barnsley and Fulham.

Cricket was also played by the young men in the early years together with football, as was the case at Derby County and Crewe for example.

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As Gainsborough Trinity were formed in 1873 at their only ever location, the Northholme ground, this Lincolnshire club can claim to possess the world’s oldest football ground where one club has played continously.

I am a Stockport County fan and look forward to visiting your club on October 3. When Stockport first entered the Football League Division Two in 1900, Gainsborough Trinity was one of their first opponents, elected four years earlier.

If anybody would like a copy of my book Football The Early Years, at a cost of only £10 post free, please email [email protected].

What are your memories of the Northolme? Share them with us either in the comment section below or email us at [email protected].