Rugby Park Stadium
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Rugby Park, Invercargill
|Former names||Homestead Stadium|
|Location||Invercargill, New Zealand|
|Owner||Invercargill City Council|
|Operator||Invercargill Venue & Events Management Ltd managed venue|
|Field size||115m x 50m 18 000pax|
|Broke ground||1886 (Cricket pitch)|
|Southland Rugby Football Union|
Rugby Park is a sports venue and home ground for the Mitre10 Cup and Southland. Rugby Park is located on the corner of Elles Road and Tweed Street in Invercargill. The ground has a regular season capacity of 18,000. It has a safe temporary seating maximum capacity of 20,000 (although it can accommodate up to 30,000 with pitch seating, large grass banks and concreted standing terraces). An agreement with the Invercargill City Council saw surplus land on the ground used to build the city's new Swimming Complex. The pitch was moved geographically towards the main stand, squared off to Rugby field dimensions (originally a quasi-cricket ground), with all weather seating installed. The Pitch itself was also weather proofed with a new high volume drainage system installed.
The main stand was fully rebuilt in 2002 with better player facilities and corporate boxes. Floodlighting towers to full HDMI TV standards were also installed. Temporary seating was added in 2010 for the 2010 ITM Cup this allowed a crowd of just on 20,000 to attend the first major defence of the Ranfurly Shield against Otago on 7 August, this seating remained in place until the Rugby World Cup games in 2011.
Rugby Park is now owned by the Invercargill City Council and managed by Invercargill Venue & Events Management Ltd, the city council's venue management company.
The Highlanders play occasionally at Rugby Park drawing large crowds. The football (soccer) team Spirit FC also play at Rugby Park. In 2017 the venue attracted large crowds for an internationally renowned event - Nitro Circus. Many local events are held at Rugby Park as well such as Relay For Life. Rugby Park is available to hire for functions and events by contacting the Invercargill City Council.
World Cup History
Rugby Park hosted one minor pool game during the inaugural 1987 Rugby World Cup, Wales verses Canada.
- Neil Ratley; Louise Berwick. "Stadium takeover is costly for city". Southland Times. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
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