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The Black-And-White Years: Fantastic Vintage Photos Of ‘Old’ Wembley Stadium, Between 1923-1963

By Chris Wright

Unfortunately we’ve had to nix requests from Pies fans for Anfield and Elland Road to be covered as part of our ongoing vintage “Around the Grounds” series as, weirdly enough considering the history shared between them, there just aren’t enough decent archive photographs of the two stadiums – so you’ll just have to make do with a monochrome tour around ‘Old Wembley’ as it’s now known…

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - West Ham United v Bolton Wanderers - 1923

Confusion and chaos reign as hundreds of thousands of fans spill onto the pitch before the 1923 FA Cup Final, a.k.a, the “White Horse Final” – the first FA Cup Final to be played at Wembley (or the “Empire Stadium” as it was then known). Billy the famous white police horse is just about visible in the upper-left corner of the pitch

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Arsenal v Cardiff City - Wembley

Wembley as seen from the Graf blimp during the 1927 FA Cup Final between Arsenal and Cardiff City

Soccer - Home International Championship - England v Scotland

The Home International Championship tie between England and Scotland as seen from the skies high above Wembley, 1928

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - Arsenal v Huddersfield Town

The Graf Zeppelin hovers ominously low over the Wembley terraces, 1930 

Soccer - FA Cup Final - West Bromwich Albion v Birmingham - Wembley

West Brom captain Tommy Glidden proudly leaves the stand with the FA Cup under his arm having just lead his team to a 2-1 victory over Birmingham City in the Final at Wembley, 1931

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - Arsenal v Newcastle United - London - 1932

Wembley Stadium, 1932

WWII British Isles

World War Two - UK & Commonwealth - The Home Front - Soccer - Wartime Friendly - England v Scotland - Wembley - 1941

Members of the British Forces are given front-row seats at Wembley to watch the 1941 Wartime Friendly between England and Scotland

Soccer - Wartime International - England v Scotland

Spectators arrive outside Wembley for the Wartime Friendly between England and Scotland, 1941

Soccer - War Time International - England v Scotland - Wembley

The view from the swarming terraces of the aforementioned Wartime Friendly, 1941

Soccer - Football League South Cup - Final - Chelsea v Charlton Athletic - Wembley Stadium

Photographers attempt to catch the action as Chelsea bear down on Charlton’s goal during the Football League South Cup Final at Wembley, 1944

Soccer - War Time International - England v Scotland - Wembley

Another vast crowd gathers to watch the second Wartime Friendly game between England and the Auld Enemy, 1944

Soccer - Wembley Stadium - London

External view of Wembley Stadium and the famous twin towers taken from the busy car park, 1947

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Blackpool v Manchester United - Wembley Stadium - London - 1948

BBC TV cameras film the FA Cup Final between Blackpool and Manchester United at Wembley, 1948

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Blackpool v Manchester United - Wembley Stadium

Thousands of Blackpool and Manchester United supporters meander up the new Olympic Road (now “Wembley Way”) on their way up to Wembley for the FA Cup Final, 1948

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Blackpool v Manchester United - Wembley Stadium

A small section of the 90,000 crowd that turned out for the 1948 FA Cup Final

Olympics - Olympic Games Preparations, London 1948

The finishing touches are applied to the Olympic Torch at Wembley, 1948

Soccer - Summer Olympic Games 1948 - Final - Yugoslavia v Sweden - London - Wembley Stadium

The view from the commentary gantry for the Summer Olympic Games Final match between Yugoslavia and Sweden at Wembley, 1948

Soccer - London Olympic Games - Final - Sweden v Yugoslavia

The Wembley scoreboard shows the final score, 1948

Soccer - Home International Championship - England v Scotland

Scotland centre-back George Young checks the solidity of the Wembley goalposts before a Home International match against England, 1949

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Arsenal v Liverpool - Wembley Stadium

Arsenal’s Alex Forbes tries on the FA Cup trophy lid for size after beating Liverpool in the 1950 FA Cup Final at Wembley

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Blackpool v Newcastle United - Wembley Stadium

Under pressure from the Blackpool forwards, a Newcastle United defender clears the ball off the line during a goalmouth scramble at the 1951 FA Cup Final

International Soccer - Home Championship - England v Scotland - Wembley

England’s inside-right Wilf Mannion is stretchered off with a suspected fractured cheek bone during a Home International against Scotland, 1951

Soccer - Wembley Stadium, London

Soccer - Wembley Stadium, London

Soccer - Wembley Stadium, London

Wembley Stadium circa 1952

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - Arsenal v Newcastle United - Wembley Stadium

Prime Minister Winston Churchill hands the FA Cup trophy over to victorious Newcastle captain Joe Harvey having beaten Arsenal in the 1952 final

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - Bolton Wanderers v Manchester City - Wembley Stadium - 1926

General view of the international friendly between England and Germany at Wembley, 1954

Soccer - Home International Championship - England v Scotland - Wembley

Crowds spill out of the stadium and filter away down Wembley Way following an international friendly between England and Scotland, 1955

Soccer - Inter Cities Fairs Cup - London v Frankfurt - Wembley

The first match ever to be played under floodlights at Wembley: an Inter Cities Fairs Cup match between London and Frankfurt, 1955

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Manchester United v Aston Villa - Wembley Stadium

Victorious Aston Villa captain Johnny Dixon is mobbed by fans as he leads his side down from the Royal Box after beating Manchester United in the 1957 FA Cup Final

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Bolton Wanderers v Manchester United - Wembley Stadium

Manchester United’s Matt Busby watches his “Babes” play Bolton in the 1958 FA Cup Final at Wembley just three months after the Munich air disaster. Far left on the front row is Busby’s assistant Jim Murphy, the man responsible for almost single-handedly rebuilding the decimated United team

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Nottingham Forest v Luton Town - Wembley Stadium

Nottingham Forest fans cheer on their team at the 1959 FA Cup Final at Wembley

Soccer - FA Cup Final - Nottingham Forest v Luton Town - Wembley Stadium

Members of the Coventry Keep Fit Association entertain the Wembley crowd before the 1959 FA Cup Final between Forest and Luton

Ski Jumping - Wembley

Ski Jumping - Wembley

An amateur ski-jumping event is held at Wembley Stadium, 1961

Soccer - Wembley Stadium Model

A model of how Wembley would look following the proposed £500,000-plus refit that saw it duly transformed into the only stadium in the world capable of providing covered seating and terracing for 100,000 people, 1961

Soccer - Wembley Stadium

The same plans in graphic form, 1961

Soccer - FA Cup - Final - Tottenham Hotspur v Burnley - Wembley Stadium

The 1962 FA Cup Final between Tottenham and Burnley: the final game to be staged at Wembley before renovation work began

Soccer - New Roof - Wembley Stadium

Soccer - New Roof - Wembley Stadium

A work in progress: Wembley’s new translucent roof is slowly but surely fitted, 1962

Re-modelled Wembley Stadium

The finished article, 1963

(Photos: PA)

More in the series…

30 Vintage Photos Of Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge, Taken Between 1905-1967
30 Vintage Photos Of Arsenal’s Highbury Stadium, Taken Between 1931-1967
Cracking Vintage Photos Of Aston Villa’s Villa Park, Taken Between 1932-1969
Spiffing Vintage Photos Of Everton’s Goodison Park, Taken Between 1905-1968
Corking Vintage Photos Of Tottenham’s White Hart Lane, Between 1903-1969

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By Chris on July 22nd, 2013 in Featured, International football, Newsnow, Photos, Retro. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
comments

4 Responses to “The Black-And-White Years: Fantastic Vintage Photos Of ‘Old’ Wembley Stadium, Between 1923-1963”

  1. [...] Prime Minister Winston Churchill hands the FA Cup trophy over to victorious Newcastle captain Joe Harvey having beaten Arsenal in the …read more [...]

  2. Rob says:

    Brilliant, thanks

  3. anon says:

    Alex Forbes looks a bit special there.

  4. Ron says:

    Very beautiful photos, very cool to see them. When the mid-80s can look old, in terms of boots, cleats and hair styles, really put things in perspective to see photos from the 1920s!

    Thanks!

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