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Take A Stroll Down Wembley Way

Author: mpressman  |  Category: Recreation & Sports
Published: July 28, 2008

Since its opening in 1923, Wembley Stadium has quickly become one of most renowned sporting stadiums in the world with the 1923 FA Cup Final the first event to be held there. The match resulted in an unprecedented crowd of between 240,000 and 300,000 cramming themselves into the stadium in order to watch the match.

Wembley became known throughout the UK as the home of football but it wasn’t long before the stadium began hosting other events – sporting and otherwise. In 1948, the stadium was the main athletics venue for the Olympics, with Fanny Blankers-Koen and Emil Z?topek among the notable winners that year. Rugby league has also played a major part in the history of Wembley. The Rugby Football Association (RFL) held the Challenge Cup final at Wembley from 1929 onwards, with a record attendance of 99, 801 turning out to witness the 1985 final between Hull and Wigan.

Wembley Stadium also became a musical venue in 1972 with an all star concert known as the London Rock ‘n Roll Show which featured performances from some of the premier rock ‘n roll stars of the time including Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and Chuck Berry. Over the coming years some of the world’s largest and most legendary acts have graced the stage at Wembley, but the stadium will probably be best remembered as being the site for the British leg of 1985’s Live Aid concert, which featured such acts as David Bowie, Queen, Paul McCartney, The Who, Dire Straits and U2.

In 2000 it was decided that the original Wembley Stadium be demolished to make room for a new, redeveloped Stadium to open in 2003. However, the work on the new stadium was delayed by a succession of financial and legal difficulties and the keys to the new stadium were not handed over to the Football Association – the owners of Wembley – until March of 2007. The new Wembley Stadium is the most expensive sporting arena ever built with the total cost of construction coming to ?798 million. With 90,000 seats, the stadium has the second largest capacity in Europe, after Barcelona’s Nou Camp, and it is the biggest under-cover stadium in the world.

Once opened, it was quickly back to business as usual for Wembley, with the first professional football match being played on the new turf just a couple of week after the keys were given to the F.A. By June of 2007 the doors to Wembley were opened once again for musical performances. US rock giants Metallica and Foo Fighters were among the first bands to play at the new stadium while Muse were the first band to sell out the new venue with a staggering 134,457 people snapping up tickets to see the first night of the band’s two nights at Wembley, with the demand for accommodation overwhelming nearby hotels in London in the process. The charity concerts, Live Earth and Concert for Diana were also held at the Stadium in the summer of 2007.

One of the most iconic venues in Britain, Wembley Stadium will always be regarded fondly by much of the population. Whether it’s the memory of a thrilling cup final or the thought of an awe inspiring concert, Wembley will continue to make memories for years to come.

Disclaimer: Matthew Pressman writes for a wide variety of commercial clients. This article is intended for information purposes only and readers should seek additional information before taking any actions based on its content.

Author: mpressman

Matthew Pressman writes for a wide variety of commercial clients. This article is intended for information purposes only and readers should seek additional information before taking any actions based on its content.

This author has published 47 articles so far.

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