Headingley Rugby Stadium

Headingley Rugby Stadium (known as AMT Headingley Rugby Stadium due to sponsorship) is a Rugby League stadium in Headingley, Leeds and shares the same site as Headingley Cricket Ground. It is the home ground of the Leeds Rhinos. Headingley is the 5th largest rugby league stadium in England.

Headingley Rugby Stadium
Headingley South Stand
Map
Full nameHeadingley Rugby Stadium
LocationSt. Michael's Lane, Headingley, Leeds LS6 3BR, West Yorkshire, England
Coordinates53°48′58.87″N 1°34′55.82″W / 53.8163528°N 1.5821722°W / 53.8163528; -1.5821722 53°49′01″N 1°34′56″W / 53.81694°N 1.58222°W / 53.81694; -1.58222
Public transitNational Rail Headingley
OwnerLeeds Rhinos
OperatorLeeds Rhinos
Capacity19,700[1]
Record attendanceAll-time
40,175 (Leeds v. Bradford Northern, 21 May 1947)
Super League
23,035 (Leeds v. Bradford Bulls, 2003)
Field size115 yd × 74 yd (105 m × 68 m)[2]
SurfaceGrass and astro turf mix
ScoreboardPhilips VideoTron
Construction
Opened1890
Renovated1991, 2011, 2017–19
Expanded1931, 1932, 2006
Tenants
Leeds Rhinos (1890–present)
Leeds Tykes (1991–2020)
Bramley (1997–1999)

History edit

1889-1980s: Construction and development edit

Leeds St Johns, who were later to become Leeds Rugby League Football Club then Leeds Rhinos, moved to Headingley in 1889 and built Headingley stadium. Leeds were founder members of the Northern Union in 1895 and Headingley hosted rugby league's first ever Challenge Cup Final in 1897.

In the 1930s, major developments took place on two sides of the rugby ground. The South Stand was completed in 1931, with some of the work being carried out by club players, while the old wooden North Stand was burned down during a match against Halifax on 25 March 1932. By the end of 1932, a new North Stand had been completed. The record attendance at Headingley was 40,175 for the rugby league match between Leeds and Bradford Northern on 21 May 1947. Undersoil heating was installed in 1963 but has since been removed due to ongoing problems, and floodlights were installed in 1966. The 1970 Rugby League World Cup final between Great Britain and Australia was played at the stadium before a crowd of 18,776.

The third and deciding Test of the 1978 Ashes series was played at Headingley before a crowd of 30,604.

1990s–2000: Rugby union and World Cup games edit

New changing rooms were added in 1991, the same year Leeds RUFC were founded and moved into Headingley. In July 1998, Leeds RUFC came under common ownership with Leeds Rhinos, the two becoming part of the world's first dual-code rugby partnership, Leeds Rugby Limited.

Headingley only hosted one match of the 1995 Rugby League World Cup, held in England and Wales to celebrate the centenary of rugby league in England. Host nation England defeated rugby league minnows South Africa 46–0 in front of 14,041 fans.

Two matches of the 2000 Rugby League World Cup were held at Headingley which included England v. Fiji which England won by 66–10 in front of a crowd of 10,052 and latterly the quarter-final fixture between England and Ireland which England won by 26–16 and attracted 15,405 spectators.

2001–2006: East Stand expansion and redevelopment edit

In 2001 capacity was increased marginally by extending the terracing around the corner in between the Western Terraces and the North Stand.

Since 2005 Headingley rugby stadium has been the venue for the annual varsity rugby union match between Leeds Beckett University and the University of Leeds which has attracted over 11,000 spectators.[3]

2005 also saw the construction of the Carnegie Stand, built to replace the Eastern Terrace. The new stand had two tiers with 1,844 seats and hospitality suites. It was opened on 1 September 2006 for the Super League match between Leeds Rhinos and Warrington Wolves.

2012–2015: More international games edit

 
The former South Stand, built in 1931 and demolished in 2017

The 2012 World Club Challenge saw the stadium packed to its capacity when the home team, and Super League XVI Champions, Leeds Rhinos took on the 2011 NRL winners the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles. 21,062 turned out to see the Rhinos defeat Manly 26–12, the game being highlighted by Ryan Hall's 90 metre intercept try midway through the first half.[4] This saw Leeds gain some revenge for their 28–20 loss to Manly in the 2009 World Club Challenge at Elland Road.

The stadium hosted two matches of the 2013 Rugby League World Cup: a Group B game featuring New Zealand, the defending World Cup Champions, and Papua New Guinea on Friday 8 November which the Kiwis won 56–10 in front of an audience of 18,180. Headingley also hosted a Quarter-final game on Friday 15 November between New Zealand and Scotland which New Zealand won by 40–4 to a crowd of 16,207.

In 2015 Headingley hosted New Zealand again for the first time since 2013 where they took on Leeds Rhinos as a warm up for their test series against England. It also marked 120 years of rugby league being played at the stadium.

2016–2019: Major redevelopment edit

 
Construction of the new North Stand taking place in September 2018, with a temporary seated area located beneath the construction site

In January 2016, it was announced that the North and South stands were to be rebuilt as part of the overdue redevelopment of the stadium and adjoining cricket ground. Parts of the South Stand were condemned in 2011 and the club wanted to modernise the rest of the ground after the Carnegie Stand was completed in 2006.[5] Financing for the £44 million redevelopment works on both the rugby stadium and cricket ground was secured from insurance and investment management group Legal & General in March 2017,[6] with a further £10 million as well as a stadium sponsorship secured in June 2017 from Emerald Group Publishing.[7]

The South Stand was demolished towards the end of the 2017 season with the North Stand following at the end of the season.[8] Leeds Rhinos mostly continued playing at Headingley while construction work was underway on both stands, although two games were moved to Elland Road at the start of the 2018 season.[9]

The new South Stand, housing up to 7,700 standing and seated supporters was officially opened in January 2019,[10] while the North Stand, housing up to 3,800 seated supporters, opened in May 2019.[11]

2020–present edit

Following the loosening of COVID-19 restrictions in July 2020, Headingley was chosen alongside the Totally Wicked Stadium as the host of multiple rounds of Super League XXV, which were held behind closed doors following the restart of the Super League season on August 2.[12]

The stadium also hosted the 2022 Championship Summer Bash. The total attendance over the weekend at the stadium was recorded at 10,763, the lowest seen for a Summer Bash, with 4,011 recorded as attending the matches held on Sunday.[13]

Future edit

The rebuilding of the North and South Stands in 2018 future proofed the stadium. The only part of the ground that remains untouched is the Western Terrace. The club have explored possibilities of expanding the stand and putting a roof over it however due the there being a public right of way and residential houses plans have never been able to come to fruition.

Layout edit

North Stand edit

Capacity- 3,825 (seated)

 
North Stand

The North Stand backs onto the cricket stadium. The stand also houses the changing rooms as well as the media and journalists and a banqueting suite that is shared by both the cricket and rugby grounds.

Global East Stand edit

 
Extentia Stand (formerly the Carnegie Stand)

Capacity- 4,550 (1,844 seated)
The Global East Stand[14] was completed in 2006 and replaced the Eastern Terrace. The stand has two tiers; the bottom contained terracing whilst the top contains seating, hospitality boxes, bars and a restaurant. It was originally known as the Carnegie Stand but was renamed Extentia Stand in late 2018.

South Stand edit

 
New South Stand

Capacity- 7,721 (2,217 seated) The South Stand is well known in rugby league for being the ground's popular side. The original stand was open to the elements but, following rebuilding in the 1930s, it was partially enclosed by a pitched roof. The roof was extended to cover the entire stand in the 1960s.

The stand was rebuilt in 2018 and contains two tiers, the bottom tier is terracing and the upper tier is seating. The stand also contains the TV gantry.

Before the replacement of the original roofs in 1999, the front of the South Stand featured a narrow spiral staircase, in full view of all spectators, via which television commentators accessed the television gantry on the roof. Rugby League commentator Eddie Waring claimed that, to brave the taunts and insults from fans as he climbed the stairs, he would sing the hymn, "Fight the Good Fight" to himself until reaching the sanctuary of the commentary box.[15]

Western Terrace edit

 
Western Terrace

Capacity- 3,604
The Western Terrace is the only part of the stadium not covered and houses the away fans. It is the only part of the ground that has had no major redevelopment nor are there any plans to do so as there is a public right of way and housing behind it. The biggest change to the Western Terrace is the permanent video board in the South West corner which replaced the temporary one in the North West corner.

Sponsors edit

Headingley first sold naming rights in 1990 to brewers Bass following which the stadium's official name became Bass Headingley. Following the end of this arrangement the ground did not have another naming rights sponsor until 2006 when Leeds Metropolitan University took the rights during the construction of the Carnegie Stand.

In 2017, Headingley sold the naming rights to Bingley-based publishers Emerald Group during the redevelopment of the North and South stands. Emerald withdrew their sponsorship from the full Headingley complex in November 2021, after which the rugby stadium reverted to its original name of Headingley Stadium.

At the end of the 2023 season, Leeds announced a record breaking 15 year sponsorship deal with Leeds based car leasing company AMT.

Year Sponsor Name
1990–1994 Bass Brewery Bass Headingley[16]
2006–2017 Leeds Metropolitan University Headingley Carnegie Stadium
2017–2021 Emerald Group Publishing Emerald Headingley Stadium
2023–2038 AMT AMT Headingley Stadium

Other uses edit

Rugby League Internationals edit

World Cup matches edit

Headingley has hosted 12 World Cup games since England first hosted the tournament in 1960. The stadium will host three more games during the postponed 2021 World Cup.

Date Winners Score Runners-up Competition Attendance
21 October 1960   Australia 21–15   New Zealand 1960 World Cup 10,773
24 October   Great Britain 11–4   Australia 1970 World Cup 15,169
7 November 1970   Australia 12–7   Great Britain 18,776
16 March 1975   England 11–4   France 1975 World Cup
12 November 1975   Australia 25–0   England 7,680
9 November 1985   Great Britain 6–6   New Zealand 1985–88 World Cup 22,209
24 January 1988   Great Britain 52–4   France 6,567
14 October 1995   England 46–0   South Africa 1995 World Cup 14,041
4 November 2000   England 66–10   Fiji 2000 World Cup 10,052
11 November 2000   England 26–16   Ireland 15,405
4 November 2013   New Zealand 56–10   Papua New Guinea 2013 World Cup 18,180
15 November 2013   New Zealand 40–4   Scotland 16,207
15 October 2022   Australia 42–8   Fiji 2021 World Cup 13,366
24 October 2022   Ireland 48–2   Jamaica 6,320
30 October 2022   New Zealand 68–6   Jamaica 6,829
5 November 2022   New Zealand 48–10   Ireland 14,044

Women's World Cup matches edit

Date Winners Score Runners-up Competition Attendance
9 November 2022   England 72–4   Brazil 2021 Women's World Cup 8,621[17]
  Papua New Guinea 34–12   Canada
17 November 2022   Canada 22–16   Brazil 5,471[17]
  England 42–4   Papua New Guinea

Test matches edit

List of rugby league test matches played at Headingley.[18]

Date Winners Score Runners-up Competition Attendance
25 January 1908   Northern Union 29–7   New Zealand 1907–08 New Zealand Tour 8,182
21 October 1921   Great Britain 6–5   Australia 1921–22 Kangaroo Tour 31,700
15 January 1927   England 32–17   New Zealand 1926–27 New Zealand Tour 6,000
9 November 1929   Great Britain 9–3   Australia 1929–30 Kangaroo Tour 31,402
11 November 1933   Great Britain 7–5   Australia 1933–34 Kangaroo Tour 29,618
16 October 1937   Great Britain 5–4   Australia 1937–38 Kangaroo Tour 31,949
17 May 1947   Great Britain 5–2   France 1946–47 European Cup 20,000
4 October 1947   Great Britain 11–10   New Zealand 1947–48 New Zealand Tour 28,445
9 October 1948   Great Britain 23–21   Australia 1948–49 Kangaroo Tour 36,529
15 December 1951   Great Britain 16–12   New Zealand 1951–52 New Zealand Tour 18,649
4 October 1952   Great Britain 19–6   Australia 1952–53 Kangaroo Tour 34,505
25 October 1952   Wales 22–16   France 1952–53 European Cup 10,380
17 December 1955   New Zealand 28–13   Great Britain 1955–56 New Zealand Tour 10,438
26 January 1957   Great Britain 45–12   France 20,221
14 March 1959   Great Britain 50–15   France 21,948
21 November 1959   Great Britain 11–10   Australia 1959–60 Kangaroo Tour 30,301
30 September 1961   New Zealand 29–11   Great Britain 1961 New Zealand Tour 16,540
17 November 1962   England 18–6   France 11,099
30 November 1963   Great Britain 16–5   Australia 1963–64 Kangaroo Tour 20,497
21 October 1967   Great Britain 16–11   Australia 1967–68 Kangaroo Tour 22,293
18 October 1969   England 40–23   Wales 1969–70 European Cup 8,355
24 February 1970   England 26–7   Wales 9,393
6 November 1971   Great Britain 12–3   New Zealand 1971 New Zealand Tour 5,479
24 November 1973   Australia 14–6   Great Britain 1973 Kangaroo Tour 16,674
29 January 1977   Wales 6–2   England 1977 European Cup 6,472
18 November 1978   Australia 23–6   Great Britain 1978 Kangaroo Tour 30,604
21 February 1981   France 5–1   England 1981 European Cup 3,229
18 November 1982   Australia 32–8   Great Britain 1982 Kangeroo Tour 17,318
17 February 1984   Great Britain 10–0   France 7,646
1 March 1985   Great Britain 50–4   France 6,491
6 February 1988   Great Britain 30–12   France 7,007
29 October 1988   Great Britain 30–28 Rest of the World 12,409
7 April 1990   France 25–18   Great Britain 6,554
16 February 1991   Great Britain 60–4   France 5,284
2 April 1993   Great Britain 72–6   France 8,196
6 November 1993   Great Britain 29–10   New Zealand 1993 New Zealand Tour 15,139
11 November   England 26–16   Ireland 15,405
9 November   England 22–4   Wales 2003 European Cup 2,124
22 October 2006   England 26–10   France 5,547
22 October 2006   Tonga 18–10   Samoa 2008 World Cup Qualifying
22 June 2007   Great Britain 42–14   France 12,685
November 2023   England V   Tonga Test series

Tour Matches edit

Other than Leeds club games, Headingley has also seen Leeds, the county team Yorkshire and a Northern Union XIII (sometimes called English League) side play host to various international touring teams from 1911–2015.

Date Winners Score Runners-up Competition Attendance
20 January 1908   Northern Union XIII 14–6   New Zealand 1907–08 All Golds tour 8,182
6 January 1912   Australasia 8–6   Leeds 1911–12 Kangaroo Tour 1,000
19 October 1921   Australasia 11–5   Leeds 1921–22 Kangaroo Tour 14,000
23 October 1929   Leeds 11–5   Australasia 1929–30 Kangaroo Tour 10,000
19 October 1933   Australia 13–0   Yorkshire 1933–34 Kangaroo Tour 10,309
29 November 1933   Australia 15–7   Leeds 5,295
6 March 1935   English League 25–18   France 1935 French tour 15,000
1 December 1937   Leeds 21–8   Australia 1937–38 Kangaroo Tour 5,000
27 October 1948   Australia 15–2   Leeds 1948–49 Kangaroo Tour 13,542
24 November 1948   Yorkshire 5–2   Australia 5,310
22 November 1952   Australia 45–4   Leeds 1952–53 Kangaroo Tour 20,335
13 October 1956   Leeds 18–13   Australia 1956–57 Kangaroo Tour 24,459
16 April 1958   English League 19–8   France 1958 French tour 13,993
12 September 1959   Australia 44–20   Leeds 1959–60 Kangaroo Tour 14,629
21 September 1963   Australia 13–10   Leeds 1963–64 Kangaroo Tour 16,641
25 November 1967   Australia 7–4   Leeds 1967–68 Kangaroo Tour 5,522
17 October 1978   Australia 25–19   Leeds 1978 Kangaroo Tour 9,781
26 October 1980   New Zealand 25–5   Leeds 1980 New Zealand Kiwis tour 5,662
20 October 1982   Australia 31–4   Leeds 1982 Kangaroo Tour 11,570
29 October 1983   Queensland 58–2   Leeds 1983 Queensland Maroons Tour 5,647
19 October 1986   Australia 40–0   Leeds 1986 Kangaroo Tour 11,389
21 October 1990   Australia 22–16   Leeds 1990 Kangaroo Tour 16,037
5 October 1994   Australia 48–6   Leeds 1994 Kangaroo Tour 18,581
23 October 2015   New Zealand 34–16   Leeds Rhinos 2015 New Zealand Tour 20,158

World Club Challenge edit

Headingley has hosted five games of the World Club Challenge / Championship / Series between 1997–2016.

Date Winners Score Runners-up Competition Attendance
18 July 1997   Leeds Rhinos 22–14   Adelaide Rams 1997 World Club Championship 11,269
3 August 1997   North Queensland Cowboys 48–14   Leeds Rhinos 12,224
17 February 2012   Leeds Rhinos 26–12   Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 2012 World Club Challenge 21,062
22 February 2013   Melbourne Storm 18–14   Leeds Rhinos 2013 World Club Challenge 20,400
21 February 2016   North Queensland Cowboys 38–4   Leeds Rhinos 2016 World Club Series 19,778

Rugby League Finals edit

First Division finals edit

The ground has hosted six of the old First Division Finals. The first being in 1914 when Salford beat Huddersfield and the last in 1968 when Wakefield beat Hull KR.

Since Super League inception in 1996, Old Trafford has hosted all but one Grand Final.

Season Champions Score Runners-up Attendance
1913–14   Salford 5–3   Huddersfield 8,091
1919–20   Hull F.C. 3–2   Huddersfield 12,900
1920–21   Hull F.C. 16–14   Hull Kingston Rovers 10,000
1922–23   Hull Kingston Rovers 15–5   Huddersfield 14,000
1966–67   Wakefield Trinity 7–7   St. Helens 20,161
1967–68   Wakefield Trinity 17–10   Hull Kingston Rovers 22,586

Second Division finals edit

Headingley hosted its first Championship Grand Final in 2007 when Castleford beat Widnes in front of 20,000 people to be promoted to Super League. The event returned in 2014 when Leigh beat Featherstone however they were not promoted due to Super League then licensing period.

Year Winners Score Runner-up Attendance
2007   Castleford 42–10   Widnes 20,814
2014   Leigh 36–12   Featherstone 9,164

Third Division finals edit

As part of the Championship Finals that included the Championship Grand Final, Headingley hosted the Championship 1 Grand Finals

Year Winners Score Runner-up Attendance
2007   Featherstone 24–6   Oldham
2014   Hunslet 17–16   Oldham 9,167

Challenge Cup Semi-finals edit

Headingley has hosted 13 Challenge Cup semi finals and one replay since 1981. The last semi final to be held at Headingley was in 2015 when Hull KR beat Warrington. In recent years the semi-finals have been held at one neutral venue as a double header.

Year Winner Score Loser
1981   Hull Kingston Rovers 22–5   St. Helens
1982   Hull 15–11   Castleford
1983   Featherstone Rovers 11–6   Bradford Northern
1985   Hull 10–10   Castleford
R   Hull 22–16   Castleford
1987   Halifax 12–8   Widnes
1988   Halifax 0–0   Hull
1992   Castleford 8–4   Hull
1994   Wigan 20–6   Castleford
1998   Sheffield Eagles 22–18   Salford
1999   London Broncos 33–27   Castleford
2000   Bradford 44–20   Warrington
2002   Wigan 20–10   Castleford
2015   Hull Kingston Rovers 26–18   Warrington

References edit

  1. ^ "Rlfans.Com". Rlfans.Com. Retrieved 7 April 2013.[failed verification]
  2. ^ "Club Records". Leeds United A.F.C. Archived from the original on 17 December 2007. Retrieved 3 April 2008.
  3. ^ LeedsVarsity.com retrieved 20 June 2014
  4. ^ "World Club Challenge 2012 – Rugby League Project". www.rugbyleagueproject.org. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  5. ^ "Leeds announce proposals for Headingley redevelopment". Love Rugby League. 28 January 2016. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  6. ^ "£40m funding confirmed for Headingley Stadium redevelopment". Yorkshire Evening Post. Leeds. 19 October 2017. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  7. ^ "Stand and deliver: Headingley facelift given £10m boost". The Yorkshire Post. Leeds. 30 June 2017. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  8. ^ Shaw, Matthew (26 September 2017). "Headingley's South Stand unrecognisable as demolition is completed". Total Rugby League. League Publications Ltd. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  9. ^ "Leeds Rhinos to remain at Headingley during redevelopment". Sky Sports News. 13 March 2021. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  10. ^ Worsley, Kayley (3 January 2019). "Newly developed south stand opens at Emerald Headingley Stadium". TheBusinessDesk. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  11. ^ Johnson, Kristian (16 May 2019). "First pictures of new-look Headingley Stadium following £44 million transformation". The Yorkshire Post. Leeds. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  12. ^ "Super League release fixture schedule for rest of 2020 season". Love Rugby League. 16 July 2020. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  13. ^ McAllister, John (2 August 2022). "Summer Bash suffers lowest attendance after Headingley move". Love Rugby League. Retrieved 14 September 2023.
  14. ^ "Emerald Headingley's East Stand to be renamed the Extentia Stand". The Yorkshire Evening Post. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
  15. ^ Hannan, Tony (2008). Being Eddie Waring. Mainstream. ISBN 1845963008.
  16. ^ Caplan, Phil (2017). The Leeds Rhinos Miscellany. The History Press. ISBN 0752452185.
  17. ^ a b Smith, Pater (20 November 2022). "Rugby League World Cup: full list of RLWC2021 results, plus scorers and crowds". Yorkshire Evening Post. Retrieved 7 June 2023.
  18. ^ "Headingley – Results – Rugby League Project". www.rugbyleagueproject.org. Retrieved 20 January 2019.

External links edit

  Media related to Headingley Stadium (rugby ground) at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by Rugby League World Cup
Final venue

1970
Succeeded by