Thursday, January 27, 2011

New Cross Greyhounds

The New Cross Stadium has been mentioned here before - it occupied the piece of land now called Bridgehouse Meadows, and was next door to the old Millwall ground (and not far from the new one). It opened in the 1900s and closed in 1969 before being demolished in 1975. The picture below, from Millwall History, shows the two grounds in 1962 - Den on the left, New Cross Stadium on the right.

As well as speedway and stock car racing, the stadium was famous for its greyhound racing. There's a fantastic collection of New Cross greyhound badges at Greyhound Derby (have just reproduced a couple here to give a flavour).

The following picture comes from the Working Class Movement Library, and shows Manchester-born boxer Len Johnson at New Cross Greyhound Stadium in 1933. Johnson's boxing career was hampered by restrictions which prevented black boxers having a crack at title fights. He later got to know Paul Robeson and became a Communist Party activist. There were boxing matches at New Cross Stadium too, which presumably explains what Johnson was doing there - he is standing next to a sign which mentions Ted Broadribb vs. Joe Clifton, two interwar boxers.


Catford Cat said...

There is a short film on the British Pathe archive of Afghan hound racing (yes, Afghan Hound racing) at New Cross Stadium -

. said...

That's fantastic.