|The Venue of Legends|
UEFA Elite Stadium
|Owner||The Football Association|
|Operator||Wembley National Stadium Limited|
|Construction cost||GBP £798 million (2007)|
|Architect||Foster and Partners
|Capacity||90,000 (football, rugby league)
86,000 (American football)
75,000 to 90,000 seated and 15,000 standing (concerts)
68,400 to 72,000 (athletics)
|England national football team (2007-present)
FA Cup Final (2007-present)
Football League play-offs finals & Conference National play-off final (2007-present)
Challenge Cup Final (RFL) (2007-present)
NFL International Series (2007-2009)
Race of Champions (2007-2008)
Football League Cup Final (2008-present)
UEFA Champions League Final (2011)
Wembley Stadium (or simply Wembley, pronounced /ˈwɛmbli/) is a football stadium located in Wembley, north west London, which opened in 2007 on the site of the old Wembley stadium. The 90,000 capacity venue is second largest stadium in Europe, and serves as England's national stadium. It is the home venue of the England national football team, and hosts the latter stages of the top level domestic club cup competition, the FA Cup. It is owned by English football's governing body, the Football Association (The FA) through their subsidiary Wembley National Stadium Ltd (WNSL). The old Wembley stadium, which opened in 1923 as the Empire Stadium, often referred to as "The Home of Football", was one of the world's most famous football stadiums until its demolition in 2003.
Designed by Foster and Partners and Populous, the new Wembley is the largest stadium in the world, and includes a partially retractable roof. A signature feature of the stadium, following on from the the old Wembley's distinctive Twin Towers, is the 134 metres (440 ft) high Wembley Arch. With a span of 317 metres (1,040 ft), this steel arch is the longest single span roof structure in the world. The stadium was built by Australian firm Multiplex at a cost of £798 million. The old Wembley closed in October 2000, with demolition originally intended for that December and the new stadium due to open in 2003. After delays to the project, the old Wembley was not completely demolished until 2003, with the new stadium scheduled to open in time for the 2006 FA Cup Final. After further delays, the stadium was delivered nearly a year late, leading to legal disputes between WNSL and Multiplex, who ultimately made a significant loss on the project. The stadium was handed over on 9 March 2007, in time to host the 2007 FA Cup Final.
In international football, the stadium is a central component of the English 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cup bids. In 2012 it will also host the football finals of the London Olympics. In club football, the stadium also hosts the showpiece season opening game the FA Community Shield match, played in August between the winners of the FA Cup and the top-level Premier League. In February, it also hosts the final of the England's other top level cup tournament, the Football League Trophy. At the end of the domestic season the stadium also hosts the latter stages of the Football League play-offs. In European football, it is due to host the 2011 Champions League Final. In friendly tournaments, since 2009 it has been the venue of the summer Wembley Cup. Outside of football, the stadium also hosts major rugby games, such as the Rugby League Challenge Cup. The stadium is also an annual regular season venue for the American National Football League's International Series, the first such venue outside North America. Non-sporting uses include large concerts by artists such as U2 and Madonna, as well as hosting in July 2007 the Concert for Diana and Live Earth.
Wembley was designed by architects Foster + Partners and Populous (formerly HOK Sport) and with engineers Mott MacDonald, built by Australian company Brookfield Multiplex and funded by Sport England, WNSL (Wembley National Stadium Limited), the Football Association, the Department for Culture Media and Sport and the London Development Agency. It is the most expensive stadium ever built at a cost of £798 million (roughly US$1.57 billion) and has the largest roof-covered seating capacity in the world. Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners was appointed to assist Wembley National Stadium Limited in preparing the scheme for a new stadium and to obtain planning and listed building permission for the development.
The all-seater stadium is based around a bowl design with a capacity of 90,000, protected from the elements by a sliding roof that does not completely enclose it. It can also be adapted as an athletic stadium by erecting a temporary platform over the lowest tier of seating. The stadium's signature feature is a circular section lattice arch of 7 m (23 ft) internal diameter with a 315 m (1,033 ft) span, erected some 22° off true, and rising to 133 m (436 ft) tall. It supports all the weight of the north roof and 60% of the weight of the retractable roof on the southern side. The archway is the world's longest unsupported roof structure. Instead of the 39 steps climbed, in the original stadium, to enter the Royal Box and collect a trophy, there are now 107.
A "platform system" has been designed to convert the stadium for athletics use, but its use would decrease the stadium's capacity to approximately 60,000. No athletics events have taken place at the stadium, and none are scheduled.
The stadium is linked to Wembley Park Station on the London Underground via Olympic Way, and Wembley Central via the White Horse Bridge. It also has a rail link—provided by the Wembley Stadium railway station—to London Marylebone and Birmingham.
The initial plan for the reconstruction of Wembley was for demolition to begin before Christmas 2000, and for the new stadium to be completed some time during 2003, but this work was delayed by a succession of financial and legal difficulties. It was scheduled to open on 13 May 2006, with the first game being that year's FA Cup Final. However, worries were expressed as to whether the stadium would actually be completed on time. The new stadium was completed and handed over to the FA on 9 March 2007, with the total cost of the project (including local transport infrastructure redevelopment and the cost of financing) estimated to be £1 billion (roughly US$1.97 billion).
In October 2005, Sports Minister Richard Caborn announced: "They say the Cup Final will be there, barring six feet of snow or something like that". However in December 2005, the builders admitted that there was a "material risk" that the stadium might not be ready in time for the Cup Final and in February 2006, these worries were confirmed by the FA moving the game to Cardiff's Millennium Stadium.
The delays started as far back as 2003. In December 2003, the constructors of the arch, subcontractors Cleveland Bridge, warned Multiplex about rising costs and a delay on the steel job of almost a year due to design changes which Multiplex rejected. Cleveland Bridge were removed from the project and replaced by Dutch firm Hollandia with all the attendant problems of starting over. On 20 March 2006, a steel rafter in the roof of the new development fell by a foot and a half, forcing 3,000 workers to evacuate the stadium and raising further doubts over the completion date which was already behind schedule. On 23 March 2006, sewers beneath the stadium buckled due to ground movement. GMB Union leader Steve Kelly said that the problem had been caused by the pipes not being properly laid, and that the repair would take months. A spokesman for developers Multiplex said that they did not believe this would "have any impact on the completion of the stadium", which was then scheduled to be completed on 31 March 2006.
On 30 March 2006, the developers announced that Wembley Stadium would not be ready until 2007. All competitions and concerts planned were to be moved to suitable locations. On 19 June 2006 it was announced that the turf had been laid. On 19 October 2006 it was announced that the venue was now set to open in early 2007 after the dispute between The Football Association and Multiplex had finally been settled. WNSL, a subsidiary of The Football Association, is expected to pay around £36m to Multiplex, as well as the amount of the original fixed-price contract. This meant that the Wembley Stadium was ready for the 2007 FA Cup Final on 19 May 2007. The official Wembley Stadium website announced that the stadium would be open for public viewing for local residents of Brent on 3 March 2007, however the event was delayed by two weeks and instead happened on 17 March. The keys to the new Wembley stadium were finally handed over to the owners on 9 March 2007 ready to be open and used for upcoming FA Cup football matches, concerts and other events.
The new pitch is 13 ft (4.0 m) lower than the previous pitch. The pitch size, as lined for association football, is 115 yards (105 m) long by 75 yards (69 m) wide, slightly narrower than the old Wembley Since the completion of the new Wembley, the pitch has come into major disrepute when it was commented on being "no good" and "not in the condition that Wembley used to be known for" by Slaven Bilić before the game between England and the team he managed, Croatia. It was confirmed when the pitch was terribly cut up during the game, which was blamed by some as the reason England did not qualify for UEFA Euro 2008 despite previous results also being blamed by others. The Football Association admitted in April 2009 after the FA Cup semi-finals that improvements are needed to the Wembley pitch after criticism of the surface by Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsène Wenger and David Moyes. The grass has been re-laid five times since the stadium re-opened in 2007 and was re-laid again in the summer of 2009, ahead of the 2009 Community Shield. In March 2010, following complaints regarding pitch quality in the final of the Carling Cup, the F.A. announced that the pitch would once again be relaid.
Many believed that the new 'roof' would incorporate a fully retractable design allowing maximum protection from the elements eg: snow, rain, weather, wind, storms and very bright sunlight. Visitors to Wembely were disappointed with the lack of a movable 'roof' feature especially considering the high construction cost of such a stadium. The inclusion of a large semi-circular arch did little to convince visitors expecting a 'state of the art' weather protection system. In practice, the roof is more of an umbrella against the rain for spectators rather than a fully retractable roof which can cover the entire pitch. Contractors of the new Wembley were quick to point out that the roof wasn't a 'roof' and should be more accurately described as a 'covering'
The new 6,350 tonne covering covers an area of over 45,000 square metres (11 acres), 4 acres (16,000 m2) of which are movable and rise to 52 m (170 ft) above the pitch. With a span of 317 m (1040 ft), the arch is the longest single span roof structure in the world and is 134 m (440 ft) above the level of the external concourse.
Before the stadium opened it was falsely reported that the roof had been designed to avoid a shadow across the pitch however it became obvious to spectators that this was not true during the first FA Cup Final and subsequent 3pm kick-off matches at Wembley when a shadow is clearly visible covering approximately one third of the pitch (see photo).
The Australian firm Multiplex, which was the main contractor on Wembley Stadium, made significant losses on the project . In an attempt to recoup some of those losses, the firm has initiated a number of legal cases against its sub-contractors and consultants. The largest of these - the largest legal claim in UK legal history - is a claim for £253 million against the structural engineering consultants Mott Macdonald. In preliminary hearings the two architecture practices which worked for Multiplex on the project have been ordered to allow Multiplex access to their records in order for them to build a case. The practices, Foster + Partners and Populous, estimate the costs of providing access and answering Multiplex's queries at £5 million. The case is not due to be heard until January 2011. Mott Macdonald has issued a counter-claim for unpaid fees of £250,000.
Multiplex has also taken the original steel contractor, Cleveland Bridge, to court in order to claim up to £38 million compensation for costs resulting from Cleveland Bridge walking away from the job. Cleveland Bridge, in turn, claimed up to £15 million from Multiplex. The case was finally resolved in September 2008 with Cleveland Bridge ordered to pay £6.1 million in damages and 20% of Multiplex's costs after the court found Cleveland Bridge was in the wrong to walk off site. The judge criticised both sides for allowing the case to reach court, pointing out that total costs were £22 million, including £1 million for photocopying. Multiplex's ultimate bill is estimated to be over £10 million.
Multiplex is also contesting a claim from its concrete contractor, PC Harrington, that Multiplex owes £13.4 million to PC Harrington.
The English national football team is a major user of Wembley Stadium. Given the ownership by The Football Association as of 10 March 2007, the League Cup final moved back to Wembley from Cardiff following the FA Cup final and FA Community Shield. Other showpiece football matches that were previously staged at Wembley, such as the Football League promotion play-offs and the Football League Trophy final, have returned to the stadium, as has the Football Conference play-off final. Additionally, the Rugby League Challenge Cup final returned to Wembley Stadium in 2007. The new Wembley is a significant part of the plan for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London; the stadium will be the site of several games in both the men's and women's football tournaments, with the finals planned to be held there.
Wembley has had a long association with American Football. Between 1986 and 1993 the old Wembley stadium hosted eight NFL exhibition matches featuring 13 different NFL teams. Since the new Wembley Stadium opened in 2007 Wembley has hosted matches of the NFL regular season. As a result of this, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell stated in October 2009 that "he expects the NFL will start playing multiple regular-season games in Britain in the next few years, an expansion that could lead to putting a franchise in London."
Besides football, Wembley can be configured to hold many other events, particularly major concerts. The first concert at the new stadium was given by George Michael on 9 June 2007. U2 set the current attendance record for an event, selling 164,244 tickets over two nights on 14 & 15 August 2009.
Muse became the first band to sell out the new stadium in 2007 and made a live DVD at the same time. Other acts to have performed at the stadium are Metallica, Foo Fighters, Madonna, Coldplay, Oasis, Take That and AC/DC.
Two large charity concerts have been held at the new Wembley stadium, the Concert for Diana, a memorial concert ten years after the Death of Diana, Princess of Wales, and Live Earth. Bon Jovi were scheduled to be the first artists to perform at the new Wembley but the late completion of the stadium saw the concerts relocated to the National Bowl and the KC Stadium.
American punk rock band Green Day are set to continue their world tour by playing the stadium on 19 June 2010. Muse will return to Wembley Stadium on 10 and 11 September 2010, having previously played there in June 2007.
|9, 10 June 2007||George Michael|
|16, 17 June 2007||Muse|
|1 July 2007||Concert for Diana|
|7 July 2007||Live Earth|
|8 July 2007||Metallica|
|6, 7 June 2008||Foo Fighters|
|11 September 2008||Madonna|
|26 June 2009||AC/DC|
|1, 3, 4, 5 July 2009||Take That|
|9, 11, 12 July 2009||Oasis, Kasabian|
|14, 15 August 2009||U2|
|18, 19 September 2009||Coldplay|
|19 June 2010||Green Day|
|26 July 2010||A.R. Rahman|
|10, 11 September 2010||Muse|
The first match at the stadium was a game played behind closed doors between Multiplex and Wembley Stadium staff. The first game in front of spectators was between the Geoff Thomas Foundation Charity XI and the Wembley Sponsors Allstars on 17 March 2007. The Geoff Thomas Foundation Charity XI won 2-0 (scorers Mark Bright and Simon Jordan). The first official match involving professional players was England U21s vs Italy U21s on 24 March 2007, which finished 3-3. Official attendance was 55,700 (although all of the 60,000 tickets that were made available were sold in advance). The first player to score in a FIFA sanctioned match was Italian striker Giampaolo Pazzini after 28 seconds of the same game. Pazzini went on to score twice more in the second half of the match making him the first person to score a hat-trick at Wembley Stadium since Paul Scholes for England in 1999. The first English player to score in a full-scale match was David Bentley with a free kick in the same game.
The first club game, competitive game, and cup final held at the new Wembley took place on 12 May 2007 when Kidderminster Harriers met Stevenage Borough in the FA Trophy final. Kidderminster striker James Constable was the first player to score a goal in a final at the new Wembley. Kidderminster became the first team to play at both the old and new stadium. Stevenage Borough were the first team to win a final at the new Wembley beating Kidderminster 3-2, despite trailing 2-0 at half time. The first players to play at both the old and new Wembley stadia were Steve Guppy (for Stevenage Borough) and Jeff Kenna (for Kidderminster Harriers). Ex-England international Guppy was the first player to win a final at both stadia (with Leicester City, Wycombe Wanderers and Stevenage). Ronnie Henry was the first ever player to lift a competitive club trophy at the new Wembley.
The first penalty save and first red card came in the Conference National playoff final between Exeter City and Morecambe. The penalty was saved by Paul Jones of Exeter City from Morecambe striker Wayne Curtis. The red card was given to Matthew Gill of Exeter for a headbutt on Craig Stanley of Morecambe. Also, Morecambe were the first ever team to win at Wembley that play in a red home shirt.
The first Football League teams to play at Wembley in a competitive fixture were Bristol Rovers and Shrewsbury Town in the 2007 Football League Two play-off Final on the 26 May 2007. Shrewsbury Town became the first league team to score at Wembley and also the first league team to have a player sent off. Bristol Rovers won the game 3-1.
The first FA Cup Final at the new Wembley (between Manchester United and Chelsea) was on 19 May 2007. Chelsea won 1-0 with a goal by Didier Drogba, making him the first player to score in the FA Cup final at the new Wembley. Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Čech also became the first goalkeeper not to concede a goal in a competitive game at Wembley. Chelsea were the last winners of the cup final at the old Wembley and the first winners at the new.
The first game involving the full English national team was a friendly played on 1 June 2007, against Brazil. The match saw captain John Terry become the first England international goal scorer at the new stadium when he scored in the 68th minute. Diego became the first full international player to score for a visiting team when he scored in stoppage time, with the fulltime result being a 1-1 draw. The first competitive senior international was played on 8 September 2007 between England and Israel. This game ended 3-0. The first player to score international goals at both the old and new stadia was Michael Owen when he scored for England against Israel. On 22 August Germany beat England 2-1 to become the first team to beat them in the new Wembley Stadium England's first competitive defeat at the new stadium was on 21 November 2007 when Croatia won 3-2. This match cost England qualification to Euro 2008 and head coach Steve McClaren his job.
Celtic were the first Scottish team to win a trophy at the new Wembley. Competing in the first year of the Wembley Cup in July 2009, against English side Tottenham, Egyptian side Al-Ahly and the current 2009 European Champions, Barcelona.
|London Buses||Olympic Way 92, PR2|
|Stop M||Wembley Park Station 223, 297, PR2|
|Stop O||Wembley Park Station 83, 182, 223, 297, PR2|
|London Underground||0.9 mile walk (Main entrance) Wembley Park |
|National Rail||Wembley Stadium|
Santiago Bernabéu Stadium
|UEFA Champions League
Beijing National Stadium
|Olympic Football tournament
Estádio do Maracanã
Rio de Janeiro
North London is the outer northern district of London.
Many outer areas of North London was once part of the county of Middlesex which no longer exists for administrative purposes. However, Middlesex is sometimes used as part of the postal address for these areas.
North London consists of the following boroughs:
This is a large, thriving metropolitan area in North West London and can be divided into several areas including Finchley Central, East Finchley and West Finchley.
Finchley Central is one of the only areas within London to be fortunate enough to have a city farm. College Farm is an attraction for locals and tourists alike and one can expect to see horses, cows, yaks, pigs and other farmyard animals (a rare sight in London!). Finchley Central is also home to the famous 'naked lady' statue at the Henly's Corner. There are a number of hotels situated in the district ranging from smaller bed and breakfasts to the Holiday Inn Finchley.
Finchley Central contains an odd mix of upper-middle class suburbia enfused with some working class aspects too, thus giving it a rather unique vibe. There is a strong Jewish community in Finchley, however, this does not contain many Orthodox Jews who generally choose to make the neighbouring areas of Hendon and Golders Green their home. The Jewish community is represented by a number of synagogues in the area, the most prominent being the New North London Synagogue which is situtated on East End Rd. This also acts as a local hub for Jewish culture.
There are a number of restaurants in Finchley Central which are reasonably priced and these include specialist restaurants such as Kosher and Halal establishments. Finchley also has a number of bohemian and lively bars/pubs some of which have late licensing laws(very handy). Travel in and out of central London is a breeze via the Northern Line and a variety of bus routes. Although Finchley has a distinctly urban feel, one can venture close by to the neighbouring Mill Hill area in order to experience some of the great British countryside.
Kilburn is a busy, diverse area situated along a stretch of the Roman Watling Street that makes up the local Edgware Road. Northern Kilburn encompasses the smaller area of Brondesbury. Kilburn spans the boroughs of Brent and Camden.
Being surrounded by generally wealthier areas, Kilburn is a mixture of influences. Historically, it was a focus point for Irish immigration (at some point it was even referred to as "County Kilburn"), and although there are few remaining in Kilburn, their influence is felt in the naming and styling of some of Kilburn's cafes and pubs. The community is currently very diverse, both ethnically and socially, with a mix of wealthy and poor streets.
Tottenham is mentioned in the Domesday book as the homestead of a man named Tota. The village of Tottenham grew up around the area of High Cross, on the junction with the High Road (the Roman road Ermine Street) and what is now Monument Way.
As a rural village this was a popular destination for the wealthy, and Henry VIII is believed to have visited the Tudor Bruce Castle, then in the hands of the Bruce family (descended from Robert the Bruce). The area stayed semi-rural until the late 19th Century when the railway (with its new, reduced, workmen's rates) brought new trade and the need for more housing to the area. The area rapidly became built up, and by the time of World War II was a major target for Luftwaffe bombing campaigns.
Since then, Tottenham has become most notorious for being one of the most deprived areas of North London and the scene of the Broadwater Farm riots in 1985. Since then, the area has done much to recover, and is now reputed to be the most ethnically diverse part of Western Europe.
North London is well served by Tube connections with several lines running through and terminating within the district:
Golders Green Underground Station is on the Edgware branch of the Northern Line. A large number of buses stop in Golders Green.
Harrow on the Hill Underground Station is on the Metropolitan Line. Outside the station is a fairly large bus station.
Although Harrow and Harrow on the Hill are technically the same area they feel totally different. Harrow town centre is a bustling shopping and business area while Harrow on the Hill has remained almost unchanged for a hundred years.
Neasden is served by the Jubilee Line on the Tube network (coloured silver). Metropolitan Line trains sometimes stop here but don't depend on it. Generally there is no access to the Metropolitan platforms. The station has 3 gates, a ticket office, automatic ticket machines and passenger information. There is also male and female toilets but you should not use these only unless you really need to. The toilets can be dirty and sometimes infested with rats and drug dealers.
Travellers coming by road can follow these routes:
From the North: M1/A1 > A406 > A404
From the East: M11 > M25 (J23) > A1 > A41 > A406 > A404
From the South: M25 (J8) > A217 > A240 > A24 > A3 > A306 >A205 > A406 > A404
From the West: M4 > A312 > A40 > A406 > A404
Tottenham is served by two tube stations on the Victoria line, Tottenham Hale and Seven Sisters.
Two London Underground stations are within a short walk of the venues. Wembley Park is on the Metropolitan and Jubilee lines, and Wembley Central on the Bakerloo line (it is also a mainline station – see below). Access to the venues are via Olympic Way and the White Horse Bridge respectively. London Underground services typically run every 5 minutes in each direction until midnight, seven days a week.
Two mainline stations are within a short walk of the venues. Wembley Central is served by Silverlink trains on the Watford DC Line, providing services to Watford Junction northbound and London Euston southbound. Services typically run every 20 minutes in each direction Mon-Sat, and every half hour on Sundays. Southern trains also run Mon-Fri peak hour services on the West London Line, also to Watford Junction northbound but to Clapham Junction and Gatwick Airport railway station southbound. Whether matchday services will run at the weekends on this route remains unclear.
Wembley Stadium station is next to the stadium. Services are provided by Chiltern Railways on the Chiltern Main Line to London Marylebon(one stop away) southbound. Services are every half-hour seven days a week. Northbound, trains only run up as far as High Wycombe and are every half-hour seven days a week. However, if travellers go first to Marylebone, there are northbound services that go all the way up to Birmingham Snow Hill. These run every half-hour, seven days a week.
There are several specialised shops in the area, as well as large shopping centres. Of course, there are hundreds of other shops and shopping centres nearby in London.
Large number of charity/thrift shops in the area. The haul is pretty good if you are looking for ladies' vintage and the Norwood shops often have shipments of castoffs from high street mainstays (Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, and Charles Tyrwhitt), but for actual designer stuff, go to St. John's Wood instead.
There are plenty of good quality restaurants in Crouch End to choose from.
Wembley is noted for its large ethnic minority commmunities, particularly people of Indian orgin. As such, there are many Indian takeaways. There are also, of course, many other takeaways, restaurants and pizza parlours.
The are numerous bars in the area, although it should be noted that alcohol is not permitted in the arena or stadium.
There are several inns and hotels in the area, ranging for the cheap and cheerful to 5 star.
Golders Green has a fair number of small hotels and Bed and Breakfasts within walking distance of the Underground Station.
The area has a justified reputation for being blighted with crime. Gangs of male youths are responsible for the majority of crime and disorder, in particular robbery and burglary. Hartington Park is to be avoided from the evening onwards. Keep to the well-lit streets and the High Rd, and avoid flashing jewellery or mobile phones. Tottenham Police Station is located at 398 High Road N17: 5 min walk north from Seven Sisters underground station.
|This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!|
Wembley Stadium is a football stadium in London, England. It was built from 2003 to 2007 in the same spot that the first Wembley Stadium was built. It holds 90,000 seats The new stadium features an arch that was designed not to cast a shadow over the stadium while games are played.
As well as sports, the new Wembley Stadium, like the first one, is also used for concerts. Metallica, Muse and George Michael have performed there. Also, the Concert for Diana was held there on July 1, 2007, and the London Live Earth concert was held there six days later, on July 7.