Park Avenue (stadium)
|Establishment||1872 (first recorded match)|
|As of 25 August 2010
Source: Ground profile
Park Avenue is a sports ground on Horton Park Avenue in Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. It was used for both cricket and football. It held 306 first class and 48 list A cricket matches between 1881 and 1996, and was home to former Football League club Bradford Park Avenue, to which it lent its name.
The first match, starting on 20 September 1880 pitted the Players of the North against the touring Australians while the last first class game in June 1996 saw Yorkshire CCC play Leicestershire CCC in the County Championship. This final game saw Leicestershire compile 681 for seven wickets declared, the record score on the ground, with Vince Wells and James Whitaker both scoring double hundreds. A women's one day international was held there on 7 July 1973 in the Women's World Cup when England Women played Jamaica Women. Park Avenue was also the scene of the famous Test Trial of 1950 when Jim Laker took an incredible eight wickets for two runs in 14 overs as "The Rest", including Peter May, were skittled for 27. Worcestershire CCC were bowled out for 28 by Yorkshire in 1907 when John Newstead took seven wickets for ten runs.
Percy Holmes recorded the highest score on the ground, 275 against Warwickshire CCC in 1928 while C.B. Fry scored 234 for Sussex in 1903. Six bowlers took nine wickets in an innings at Park Avenue, with Albert Thomas taking nine for 30 for Northamptonshire CCC in 1920 and Emmott Robinson taking his career best nine for 36 in a Roses Match in the same year.
The ground was also used for football matches and was home for many years to Bradford Park Avenue, a former member of the Football League. The club was officially known as Bradford, but Park Avenue was often appended to their name to avoid confusion with Bradford City. The ground was host to a Home Championships match between England and Ireland in February 1909. The club left Park Avenue in 1973, selling it for financial reasons. After going bust and reforming as a Sunday league team in 1975, the club returned to what was left of Park Avenue in season 1987–88. However they had to vacate the ground at the end of the season when an indoor cricket centre was built on part of the pitch. Bradford Park Avenue was reformed as a semi-professional club late in 1987 and now play at Horsfall Stadium.
It is still a cricket ground and is used by Bradford College Cricket Academy. Only a perimeter wall of the football ground remains and some of the bricked up terrace entrances can still be seen on Canterbury Avenue with admission signs still in place.