Goldstone Ground

Model size : 740mm x 610mm
Scale : 1:220 

This is a piece very close to my heart. The Goldstone was always going to be a model that I would build at some point, being the former stadium of my home-town club " Brighton & Hove Albion". Sold to a developer, it was demolished in 1997 leaving the occupants homeless.

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My memories stretch over an eighteen year period in which I can recall many occasions of going through every emotion that a supporter goes through following their chosen team. The stadium had a unique charm with its low-slung arched roofs on three sides,  uncovered completely down the other side and a sloping pitch from north to south. The main stand, on the west side, was built in the mid fifties and only spanned one third of the length of the pitch; later the club  would extend this stand all the way to the south goal line. This stand was never extended all the way to the north goal line, although in the early eighties a small temporary stand was put up during the club's four season stint in the old first division. A lower standing paddock ran the full length of the pitch, with an upper seated level running two thirds the length. Like most stands of its time it had wooden seats.

P8170872The north stand  behind the goal  had a twin-arched roof but due to decay the club dismantled this structure leaving a uncovered terrace. A couple of years later a modern flat supported roof was erected, as seen in the model.

The east side was always an uncovered terrace and followed the lay of the land, known as the East Terrace, this side of ground was built into a hill. The north end  was the highest point in the ground and gradually descended  all the way to the south end. It had a walk-way through the middle called the 'chicken run'; this started in the north east corner and ran through the first section.  Goldstone Lane ran behind the full length of the east side and provided access to the houses behind. Behind the south goal was an all-seated covered stand. There was a walk-way through the middle of the seats creating lower and upper sections. The lower section used to be a standing paddock and the upper section had wooden bench-style seating with a  dividing wooden wall. Due to a fire in the early eighties this stand was gutted and modernised with the conventional plastic seats. However, the roof was saved and kept as a original feature. Because this stand was not particularly steep, the roof sat not far above the top of the goal posts. This was deceiving as the south stand was not as small as it seemed.

When creating this piece I had to make sure it had that weather-beaten look. This was a old stadium both in design and age. Apart from the north stand roof, it had seen very little re-development over the last thirty years so it was very important that sense of decay and heritage was evident to give a reallistic effect. I decided to model this ground as it would have been around 1990. I did, however, restore the East Terrace with all its mass of blue crash barriers to how they would have been in the late eighties, as this side of the ground was in the worst form of decay. One problem I had was I built this model after the Goldstone was demolished, and I found it very difficult getting detailed photographs of parts of the ground. Its funny to think I thought I new every inch of this stadium, it wasn't until I began building this model, I realised I didn't. 

This was my first replica model, built between 1999 and 2001. I never fully completed this piece and returned to it in 2010 to finally complete it. I would like to think this model is an accurate representation of this famous old stadium. 

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