Today York City Football Club revealed legacy plans for their much-loved, historic ground Bootham Crescent, ahead of their move to the brand new LNER Community Stadium.
The National League North club, who have called Bootham Crescent home for 88 years, are proud to reveal legacy plans which are in the process of being designed together with, Historic England and Persimmon Homes.
Placing great importance on safeguarding a lasting legacy for the ground, which means so much to so many people, the club teamed up with Historic England to create a design which will retain a legacy and ensure a permanent tribute is kept, in any future development on the site.
The legacy plans for the Bootham Crescent site include;
Retention of a section of the Popular Stand terrace and tunnel to provide a lasting legacy of the stadium and create a focal point for memory and orientation. Naming of places in the site; the club and Persimmon Homes have submitted a request, to City of York Council, to name 6 places within the development including roads, walks and apartments all paying respects to past legends of York City FC, including David Longhurst Way and similar. Creation of a Memorial Garden which will provide a home for existing memorials, caskets and ashes (subject to family wishes). Marking out of the centre circle, within in the Public Open Space, will sit where the current centre circle sits in the ground and will align with the retained section of terrace and provide a further place for orientation. Recreation of the flagpole and ‘five-minute flag’; another unique historic feature of Bootham Crescent was the lowering of the club flag to signal that there were five minutes to go before the end of each match. The flag flew from a flagpole originally located between the south-east corner of the pitch and the main entrance. A new flagpole will be erected, flying a replica of the club flag as a permanent and symbolic reminder of fans’ allegiance to Bootham Crescent. Retention and consolidation of the boundary wall around the site which was originally in place for the cricket pitch, will be retained but where concrete blockwork has been added to the summit this will be removed. Where necessary, consolidation will be undertaken using reclaimed bricks from elsewhere on the site.
YCFC Chairman Jason Mcgill said: “Leaving this ground, which has been our home for 88 years, is going to be very difficult for everyone. Each and every person associated with the club has special memories; many of our fans have grown up here, others have spent time with family or made friends. We hope that these legacy plans, which have been very close to our hearts, will give supporters, locals and visitors a place to remember these memories for years to come.” Historic England are using this project as a benchmark for how other sports/clubs and other leisure places might approach a ground redevelopment. They are keen to give places and environments greater meaning and resilience. They are working with the club and developers to advise how we can use heritage to make a new and distinctive place that has an identity and respects previous uses and associations.
As part of this project Historic England have commissioned a series of videos to be found on it’s YouTube site at:
Keith Emerick of Historic England said: “The affection and passion that York City fans have for Bootham Crescent shows how the ground is not just a football pitch but a place loaded with meaning and memories. Historic England believes that it’s important that this heritage is given the respect it deserves and that the ground is memorialised in the housing development that will take its place.”
Scott Waters, managing director for Persimmon Homes Yorkshire, said: “We have always understood the importance of creating a design that is in keeping with Bootham Crescent’s history and feel privileged to be part of such a significant new development.”