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The Stadium

For those of us who grew up in Wigan in the 70's and 80's with the delights of Springfield Park and Central Park, the construction of a new modern all singing, all dancing Stadium was a mix of excitement and sadness.
We all remember the mud-bank that the away supporters used at Springfield Park and who could ever forget the urine soaked toilets of the main stand at Central Park - both memories ingrained in my mind even now - we wondered what new memories this concrete and steel monstrosity would bring.
The stadium opened in 1999, the same year that I became a father for the first time and right from the outset the structure was impressive. But, let's be honest compared to the ramshackle efforts of the past, anything was going to be impressive, but maybe I am being a bit harsh on the two old stadiums, they had bag fulls of character and remain well loved within both football and rugby communities.
In the years that have elapsed since 1999, lots has been written and many images taken of the Ground and the teams that played there, but I often thought about putting together a series of images that show the ground in a different light, well hardly any natural light at all to be honest.
This set of images are the ones that I took at night, when the air was cold and chill and the ground empty and eerie - they show the place in a totally different light which to me adds to it's history and presence.
The South Stand: - 
Originally of course the ground was the JJB Stadium, but as that great empire came to an end DW Sports took over the naming right and of course the entrance sign.
The Main Entrance: -
The ground is closely located to the original Robin Park athletics stadium and indeed the reserve teams often play their matches on the football pitch there - there is a closeness with the two sporting arena's 
West Stand and South Stand with Robin Park Arena:-
The West Stand is the main stand with all the corporate facilities placed here, the team changing rooms and of course the main reception.
Springfield (West) Stand:-
I suppose my favourite part of the ground harks back to May 11th 2013 and the day that the footballing side of Wigan will never ever forget - the day that Wigan Athletic won the FA Cup Final - just need the front entrance there is a small plaque to commemorate the biggest ever day in the history of sport for the town. 
The FA Cup - remembered:-
This short collection of images form part of a larger collection and indeed part of larger project of mine which one day will be unveiled in all its glory.
But for now I hope you liked the different view of the DW Stadium, one that you don't often come across.

This post first appeared on Martin Holden Images, please read the originial post: here

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