Gone but never forgotten... Our lost stadiums - Xtratime Community
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old January 28th, 2008, 01:33 Thread Starter
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Gone but never forgotten... Our lost stadiums

While there is a lot of constructing going on, Belgium also had some really authentic and beautiful old stadiums. Stadiums that hadn't changed a bit in 80 years and breathe the atmosphere of the glory days.

I am a groundhopper and visited over 1300 football fields and stadiums in my life, and while I enjoyed some of the modern stadiums (for example Anderlecht, Standard and Charleroi have modern stadiums but they still have a really nice look and feeling) , my big love are the authentic old stadiums like Union and Antwerp have. In those stadiums you still breathe the history and tradition of the club. They have something unique and special, like an old cathedral or an old manor that has not lost its beauty after all those years.




Unfortunately we had to say goodbye to one of our oldest stadiums once again.

Armenonville, the former stadium of VG Oostende, is now forever a part of history

As big as the rivalry between KV and VG Oostende may be, the groundhopper in myself has to recognise that VGO had a beautiful old stadium. Its main stand, with its wooden roff and wooden benches, was fantastic. It hadn't changed a bit in many decades, and was a nice memory of the glory days of the club.

And now it is gone forever. The hospital next door needed to enlarge and the stadium stood in its way. As VGO was not allowed to play there anymore (they now share Albertparkstadium with us), the stadium was a logical victim to disappear and make place for a new hospital wing. Although the city may look at this from a business angle and be right to do so, for groundhoppers and fans of old stadiums (like me) it is always painful to say goodbye to a stadium we considered beautiful and unique. Even as a fan of the big rivals of VG Oostende, I am sad to see Armenonville go. And I have only 1 thing that makes me somewhat feel better, and that is the knowledge that I still had the chance to visit the stadium while it existed, as I was there the last time shortly before I emigrated. It is gone forever now, but at least I have been there.




I also visited De Klokke (Club Brugge's old stadium) and Noorderlaan (Winterslag's old stadium) a few months before they were demolished.

Although both were an absolute ruin (at De Klokke there were parts of the roof fallen down on the stand, drug injection needles in the canteen, sheep on the field, and more traces of decay) I still recognised something glorious in these stadiums. The decay could not hide the fact that you could still see what a beautiful stadiums they once were.

Also here, there is nothing but memories, and I can only be happy to have been there before they were gone. Too bad I never saw Rocourt before it disappeared.




And more old glories may be about to leave. The Crossingstadium in Schaerbeek has been declared unsafe completely (the last remaining safe stand has now also been declared unsafe after the 3 other stands had already been closed for the public for years) and the two local clubs FC Kosova and RC Schaerbeek have been forced to look for a new home ground. Seems the Crossingstadium will be the next historical stadium that will disappear.




The number of really old and authentic stadiums in Belgium is shrinking, but we have at least a few survivors. The Bosuil still has its main stand untouched, the Dudenpark of Union still has its main stand and its main terrace untouched (I think it never changed a bit for about 80 years now), the Drie Linden is still there, ...

But that's about it.




May this topic be a tribute and memory to the beautiful stadiums we once had and that are no longer amongst us. I will search some pictures the coming days.

But one thing I must say, even despite the rivaly between VG and KV Oostende: Armenonville was a beautiful stadium and I am really sad to see it is gone. Gone, but never forgotten.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old January 28th, 2008, 11:59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crackedpleasures
at De Klokke there were parts of the roof fallen down on the stand, drug injection needles in the canteen
Damn

That's where i live right now, hope they didnt just used diggers to put all this shit under the ground and then one day i have aids through some addict's needle that arose from the soiled ground

http://youtu.be/id5miD_uZDk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lg0Re9aBJt4

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old January 28th, 2008, 12:51 Thread Starter
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It was shocking to see. In the canteen (which looked like a total ruin) there were drug needless and cocaine traces all over the place. It looks like drug dealers meeting in the old stadium to exchange and use drugs, were the only people that still came to the stadium. It was hard to believe that, apart from the junkies, others would have still been there the last months: the roof has partially fallen down, the weeds on the stand were sky high, there were sheep all over the pitch, the grass was half a meter high, the stand was a total ruin, ...

Seems the stadion was abandonned for ages apart from the drug addicts that used the canteen as their dealing/using spot. And still, even with such a mess, you could still see how beautiful this stadium once had been. Which made it even worse really: it was such a lovely stadium and was the decor of so many of Brugge's historical games, it was such a shame that it had to end in this way.

Same really for FC Winterslag. I was there three months before it was demolished. Same story here really: weeds all over the place, the canteen that seemed a ruin only used by drug dealers and "krakers", ... But here as well it was clear that this had once been a great stadium.

I fear the Crossingstadium in Schaarbeek is going to be next. 3 out of 4 stands were already unused for years because of safety reasons. Now that the last remaining used stand is also declared unsafe, and with the clubs using the stadium officially forced to look for a new home, it seems the curtain is about to fall for yet another old stadium. Again I am lucky to have been there in time, and those who still want to see it still have the chance, but I would hurry.




Slightly off-topic, but how is this injected needle going to mysteriously rise out of the ground and into your apartment? It's not like it can walk up the stairs from the basement and enter your living room
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old January 29th, 2008, 11:56
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magma movements??? Earth eruptions?? I'm moving, thats for sure!!!!

http://youtu.be/id5miD_uZDk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lg0Re9aBJt4

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old January 29th, 2008, 17:28
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Good topic

Agree 100% with your opinion.

Really enjoyed my visit to Union and Antwerp, great historical stadiums, just lovely to see, especially as I'm from Holland.
Last weekend I was in Brussels and visit the Trois Tilleuls stadium together with the small ground close to the K. Boudewijnstadion, also these two were great to see, although with less tradition.

Armenonville is not so special for me personally, although it's bad it's gone...
In my life so far, about this topic () there are two things I feel really bad about, one: I've never visited Rocourt (but also didn't ever had the possibility), two: I didn't visit the Standard-Athletic match (1-7) some years ago.
When reading the old stories about Rocourt... everytime I think damn! So great but it's in the past...

About the Stadu du Crossing, keep me up-to-date, surely must visit that one before it's gone, just like the Bureaufosse in Liege, how about that one recently? No plans?

Still, Belgium is heaven concerning this topic, in Holland there's only 'de Berg' in Wageningen left, all the rest are hyper-modern stadiums who're almost all too ugly. For some reason all the traditional ones have to be demolished and can't be rebuild...

btw; 1300 is impressive, I still have got a loooooong way to go .
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old January 29th, 2008, 18:11
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Don't know if there are plans to demolish Bureaufosse. I only know a local team is playing there nowadays.

Thought they wanted to renovate the Crossing stadium for the national youth teams, etc ?

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