Hilton Park (stadium)
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (October 2013)|
|Full name||Hilton Park|
|Former names||Kirkhall Lane|
|Location||Leigh, Metropolitan Borough of Wigan|
Leigh Centurions (1890–2009)Leigh Genesis (1995–2009)
Hilton Park was a multi-purpose stadium in Leigh, Greater Manchester, England. It was the home of Leigh Centurions rugby league club and Leigh Genesis F.C. association football club. It had a capacity of approximately 10,000.
The stadium was demolished in February 2009.
In 1947, Leigh Rugby League Club moved to new headquarters in Kirkhall Lane, having played at Mather Lane before World War II and at Madeley Park (Leigh Harriers Athletic ground) immediately after the war.
In 1953 floodlights were installed at a cost of £4,100. The ground saw a record home crowd of 31,326 attend a Rugby League Challenge Cup tie with St Helens in the same year. Later, Kirkhall Lane was officially renamed Hilton Park after former club chairman Jack Hilton in recognition of his work in securing the site for the new ground.
Leigh's record attendance for rugby was set in 1953 at 31,326 when St Helens visited for a third round Challenge Cup game. The largest modern-day attendance saw 9,760 watch a Challenge Cup Quarter Final against local rivals Wigan in 2002.
In 1995, the association football club Horwich RMI relocated from the Grundy Hill Stadium, in Horwich to Hilton Park, changing its name to Leigh RMI in the process. As part of the deal a new company, Grundy Hill Estates, was formed to take over the ownership of the ground.
Leigh added Centurions to its name for the 1995–96 season, and as part of the name change the stadium was renamed the Coliseum.
It was announced in January 2007 that the club would undergo a rebranding exercise that would ultimately lead to the Centurions name being dropped but the decision to rebrand was reversed after a fans' backlash.
Leigh Centurions moved to Leigh Sports Village for the 2009–10 season. Hilton Park has since been demolished.
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