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Wilderspool Stadium was a rugby league stadium in Warrington, England. The ground was Warrington RLFC's old ground before moving to the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

Wilderspool
Full nameWilderspool Stadium
LocationFletcher Street, Warrington
Coordinates53°22′57″N 2°35′17″W / 53.38250°N 2.58806°W / 53.38250; -2.58806Coordinates: 53°22′57″N 2°35′17″W / 53.38250°N 2.58806°W / 53.38250; -2.58806
OwnerWarrington Borough Council
OperatorWarrington Wolves
Capacity9,200 (900 seating)
SurfaceGrass
ScoreboardManual
Construction
Built1881
Opened1881
Renovated1888
Expanded1983, 2000
Closed2014
Demolished2014
Tenants
Warrington Wolves (1881–1882, 1884–2003)
Warrington Wizards (2003–2012)

HistoryEdit

It was the home ground of Warrington RLFC until 2003.[1] The final game was played in September 2013 with Warrington beating Wakefield 52–12.[2]

A stand was completely destroyed by arson in 1982.[3]

During the 1994 Kangaroo tour, Australia defeated Warrington 24-0 at Wilderspool before a crowd of 11,244 in the Kangaroos' last ever game at the ground. The record Kangaroo Tour attendance at the stadium was on the 1948-9 tour when 26,879 saw Warrington defeat the Kangaroos 16-7.[4]

The stadium was finally demolished between August and October 2014.[2] A plan for 160 houses on the site was submitted in 2019, more than 16 years after the final game at Wilderspool.[5]

The scoreboard from Wilderspool was restored and placed in Warrington's Victoria Park in 2017.[6]

Rugby League Test matchesEdit

List of Test and World Cup matches played at Wilderspool Stadium.[7]

Game# Date Result Attendance Notes
1 15 April 1953   Wales def. Other Nationalities 18–16 8,449 1952–53 European Rugby League Championship
2 1 December 1973   Australia def.   Great Britain 15–5 10,019 1973 Ashes series
3 20 September 1975   England def.   Wales 22–16 5,034 1975 Rugby League World Cup
4 24 March 1979   England def.   France 12–6 5,004 1979 European Rugby League Championship
5 8 October 1995   New Zealand def.   Tonga 25–24 8,083 1995 Rugby League World Cup Group B
6 20 October 1995   Russia def.   United States 28–26 1,950 1995 Rugby League Emerging Nations Tournament
7 16 November 2003   England def.   France 68–6 2,536 2003 European Nations Cup

Rugby League Tour MatchesEdit

Wilderspool also saw Warrington and the county team Lancashire play host to various international touring teams from 1907–1994.

Game Date Result Attendance Notes
1 21 December 1907   Warrington def.   New Zealand 15–13 10,000 1907–08 All Golds tour
2 14 November 1908   Warrington def.   Australia 10–3 5,000 1908–09 Kangaroo Tour
3 8 February 1909   Warrington drew with   Australia 8–8 7,000
4 30 December 1911   Australasia def.   Warrington 34–6 8,500 1911–12 Kangaroo Tour
5 29 October 1921   Warrington def.   Australasia 10–3 16,000 1921–22 Kangaroo Tour
6 14 December 1921   Lancashire def.   Australasia 8–6 6,000
7 9 October 1926   Warrington def.   New Zealand 17–5 5,000 1926–27 New Zealand Kiwis tour
8 26 September 1929   Australasia def.   Lancashire 29–14 24,000 1929–30 Kangaroo Tour
9 21 December 1929   Warrington def.   Australasia 17–8 12,826
10 20 September 1933   Australia def.   Lancashire 33–7 16,576 1933–34 Kangaroo Tour
11 14 October 1933   Warrington def.   Australia 15–12 16,431
12 17 March 1934   English League XIII def.   France 32–16 11,100 1934 French rugby league tour
13 29 September 1937   Lancashire def.   Australia 7–5 16,250 1937–38 Kangaroo Tour
14 27 November 1937   Warrington def.   Australia 8–6 12,637
15 30 October 1948   Warrington def.   Australia 16–7 26,879 1948–49 Kangaroo Tour
16 11 October 1952   Australia def.   Warrington 34–10 21,478 1952–53 Kangaroo Tour
17 19 November 1952   Australia def.   Lancashire 36–11 5,863
18 27 October 1956   Warrington def.   Australia 21–17 15,613 1956–57 Kangaroo Tour
19 19 September 1959   Australia def.   Warrington 30–24 17,112 1959–60 Kangaroo Tour
20 14 September 1963   Australia def.   Warrington 28–20 20,090 1963–64 Kangaroo Tour
21 30 September 1967   Australia def.   Warrington 16–7 11,642 1967–68 Kangaroo Tour
22 11 October 1978   Warrington def.   Australia 15–12 10,143 1978 Kangaroo Tour
23 29 October 1980   Warrington def.   New Zealand 11–7 5,680 1980 New Zealand Kiwis tour
24 31 October 1990   Australia def.   Warrington 26–6 10,200 1990 Kangaroo Tour
24 9 November 1994   Australia def.   Warrington 24–0 11,244 1994 Kangaroo Tour

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Andy Wilson (16 September 2003). "Wilderspool braced for final hooter". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  2. ^ a b Malia, Simon (7 August 2014). "Wilderspool demolition paves way for Wire Regeneration masterplan".
  3. ^ "Timeline". My Warrington.
  4. ^ 1948 Kangaroo tour @ Rugby League Project Archived 17 May 2014 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Skentelbery, David (8 February 2019). "160-homes plan for former Wilderspool Stadium site". Warrington Worldwide.
  6. ^ Everett, Adam. "Wilderspool Stadium scoreboard restored in Victoria Park". Warrington Guardian.
  7. ^ Wilderspool results @ Rugby League Project