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> Thatcher Tried To Demolish Hampden, Newly-released files reveal a cunning plan
post 14th Dec 2009, 10:06pm
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Margaret Thatcher's Tory government tried to demolish Scotland's International Stadium, Hampden Park, according to recently-released declassified government documents. The secret files reveal that the Tories, whose unreserved antipathy for Scotland was reciprocated, planned to tear down the dilapidated stadium and shuttle Scotland's national games between venues around the country.

Former MP Teddy Taylor, working as a Tory special advisor after losing his Glasgow seat in the constituency where Hampden is located, was the man identified as advocating a party policy of demolishing the stadium rather than renovating it.

The demolition proposals were drawn up after a 5.5million funding plan for the national stadium's refurbishment were withdrawn by Glasgow District Council, leaving the then 76-year-old facility vulnerable to Tory overtures orchestrated from Westminster.

Mr Taylor's late seventies report said:
"If the Hampden scheme isn't going ahead, wouldn't it be wise to call it a day, offering to sweeten the pill by indicating that the big international matches would be played at various grounds, not just in Glasgow, with Aberdeen, Dundee and Edinburgh all getting a share?

There would be the remaining problem of what to do with Hampden, but I have a feeling it would be better for this to be faced up to now rather than just allowing the massive ground simply to deteriorate. I think you’d be surprised to find how many folk would welcome it after the initial burst of protest."

Although Alexander Fletcher, then under-secretary of state for Scotland, agreed with the proposal, he suggested that it would be "more appropriate" for the Scottish football authorities to arrive at the same conclusion, independently of the Conservative party.

Fletcher wrote:
"If Glasgow District Council does not reverse its decision, there is no doubt that the scheme [for redevelopment] would have to be abandoned. In the event, it would be for the football bodies to decide what to do about big matches. It would be natural and appropriate for them to think in terms of using the bigger grounds in Glasgow and other parts of Scotland."

Fortunately foe Glasgow, and for Scotland, Mr Taylor's plans were to eventually come to nothing and Hampden was redeveloped into one of Uefa's 'Elite Stadiums' hosting a Champions' League and UEFA Cup final in the last ten years alone.

Aerial view of the 'new' Hampden Park.

The view inside the great stadium.

Mr Taylor though has since stood by his plans for demolition, saying:
"I still think it would have been terribly good to replace Hampden by having international games shared throughout Scotland."


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post 15th Dec 2009, 01:00pm
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Yes...anything that Thatcher wanted I'm against, and she proved it the way she attacked Scotland....
However, on the issue of Hampden....I did listen to the TV discussion with Archie MacPherson, about this issue, and as much as I hate to admit it......he has a point about the demolition of Hampden...
Had we gone down the line of realising that the new Hampden was a stadium for posers...we might, just might have stood back and realised that the Scottish Game was falling to pieces, and put the money into youth training facilities over Scotland, (probably about 8), and we would not see today such a low-level, and crap football structure...
People ask why we as Scots, have dropped to such a low standard, whereas countries whom we beat regularily, now 'tank us' in style and performance every game....?
Perhaps Big Archie is right, maybe instead of Hating Thatcher so much, we might have looked to the future, and copied what France, Germany, Italy and almost every other country did....spend money on developing the football game...without a showpiece stadium that is a luxury surely we cannot now afford.............needs some thought on the matter...!
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post 15th Dec 2009, 01:57pm
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I agree eith what you say about Hampden Park Bigdrew. I have travelled a lot in Scotland and I was always interested in taking a look at the youth training facilities available. i only ever saw one. This one was in Largs and i thought it was a very good one. I was also told there was one in Milngavie, but despite having tried to find it, i never did. There's probably more now, I don't know, but i often thought it was strange that there didn't appear to be very many around Glasgow. Crimey even Renfrew had better facilities than i found in Glasgow
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Posts in this topic
- GG   Thatcher Tried To Demolish Hampden   14th Dec 2009, 10:06pm
- - marydee   Comes as no surprise she would liked to have demol...   14th Dec 2009, 10:29pm
|- - kerry4652   QUOTE (marydee @ 14th Dec 2009, 11:27pm) ...   14th Dec 2009, 11:43pm
- - jojax64   The Tories demolished more Scottish industry than ...   14th Dec 2009, 11:02pm
- - Heather   Yes Thatcher made a good job of demolishing Scotla...   14th Dec 2009, 11:58pm
|- - dugald   QUOTE (Heather @ 15th Dec 2009, 12:56am) ...   15th Dec 2009, 12:24am
- - norrie123   I am sure the people who live next to Hampden woul...   15th Dec 2009, 12:05am
- - TeeHeeHee   Dugald, are you admitting to being an "outlaw...   15th Dec 2009, 12:42am
|- - dugald   QUOTE (TeeHeeHee @ 15th Dec 2009, 01:40am...   15th Dec 2009, 12:28pm
|- - TeeHeeHee   QUOTE (dugald @ 15th Dec 2009, 01:26pm) Y...   15th Dec 2009, 01:22pm
- - Rabbie   Wis a dump anyway. She missed Sighthill... but th...   15th Dec 2009, 01:46am
- - donaldanderson   If she had shut down Parkheid and Ibrox instead sh...   15th Dec 2009, 04:29am
- - Macbeast   As I read it, it was Teddy Taylor who proposed it ...   15th Dec 2009, 07:40am
|- - Rabbie   QUOTE (Macbeast @ 15th Dec 2009, 07:38am)...   15th Dec 2009, 11:16am
- - hopalong cassidy   It wasn't Thatcher to Taylor who tryied to scr...   15th Dec 2009, 09:20am
- - marydee   If the demolition of Hampden and the distribution ...   15th Dec 2009, 02:43pm
- - Heather   Dugald, it made no difference whose name the house...   15th Dec 2009, 07:56pm
|- - dugald   QUOTE (Heather @ 15th Dec 2009, 08:54pm) ...   16th Dec 2009, 12:25pm
- - Macbeast   Is Archie McPherson still around ?? I used to wor...   16th Dec 2009, 08:42am
|- - ashfield   QUOTE (Macbeast @ 16th Dec 2009, 08:40am)...   16th Dec 2009, 09:19am
- - Guest   Labour has demolished more of Glasgow than Thatche...   16th Dec 2009, 06:07pm
- - Heather   I'll tell you worse than that Dugald. My brot...   16th Dec 2009, 08:44pm
- - marydee   The 'Can't Pay Won't Pay' campaign...   16th Dec 2009, 09:34pm
- - Heather   Your right Marydee. Years after it ended and I ...   17th Dec 2009, 12:20am
- - TeeHeeHee   Was it ... jobs worth mate   17th Dec 2009, 01:57am
- - Heather   No it was the Social Security.   17th Dec 2009, 07:56pm
- - tamhickey   Ultimately, the "Cant pay, won't pay...   18th Dec 2009, 07:55am
- - ashfield   Tam, good post. I have only been in the function ...   18th Dec 2009, 08:34am

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