WEMBLEY STADIUM INFORMATION:
Location: London, England
Address: Wembley National Stadium Ltd, Wembley, London HA9 0WS
Year Opened: 2007
Occupants: English national football team
Former Name: Empire Stadium (former building)
Parking: None. Venue reccomends public transport.
Rules: Please check with the venue for a comprehensive list.
Wembley Stadium has its roots as a municipal park and leisure grounds in the late 1800's which nestled football and cricket pitches, a running track, fountains and waterfalls, walkways and flowerbeds. In order to encourage more people to use the railway system, Chairman of the Metropolitan Railway, Sir Edward Watkin, decided to build an attraction at the site. His concept at the time was of a huge four-legged tower, and construction began and ended promptly. Watkin's tower was never completed, and the incomplete structure left in the aftermath became know as Watkin's Folly. The structure was an attraction in and of itself, and it remained that way until dynamited away in 1907.
In 1918, the British government conceived a grand attraction for the British Empire Exhibition - a stadium as the centerpiece of a National Sports Ground. The Wembley Park Leisure Gorunds was the chosen location for the project, which was to erect the Empire Stadium. The stadium, designed by architects Sir John Simpson and Maxwell Ayerton, and the engineer Sir Owen Williams, took 300 days to build, and cost an estimated £750,000. The very first event the old Wembley Stadium hosted was the 'white horse cup final.'
In the year 2000, Empire Stadium closed its doors because of its inability to meet the needs of sports fans. In its stead, the new Wemberly Stadium was erected, costing an estimated £1 billion, or almost 2 billion dollars U.S. currency. It is the most expensive stadium ever built, and has the largest seating capacity in the world with every seat under cover. Several types of events and sports are hosted each year at the stadium, including concerts, soccer, rugby and even NFL football. The original Wembley Stadium (Empire Stadium) hosted the NFL's preaseason American Bowl series between 1986 and 1993.