bruce smith books

Highbury Highs

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"As detailed a history of the Gunners as you could ever read…Smith has created a fitting tribute to a stage that has produced live drama for nearly a century – Hampstead and Highgate Express..."
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A lavish commemorative tome- Daily Telegraph
An impressively researched tribute to a beautiful stadium’ – Publishing News

Now in its THIRD EDITION. Extensively updated and revised, Bruce Smith has expanded his impressively researched tribute to include even more information about this beautiful stadium. In addition he looks back from, today’s viewpoint and asks, “Was it worth it?” Will the answer surprise you?

Highbury is the story of Arsenal Stadium. It is also the story of Arsenal at Highbury. Every football ground is special but in true Orwellian style some are more special than others – Highbury certainly comes into that latter category and this fully illustrated book provides Arsenal fans around the world with a complete keepsake of the the ground the club called home for over 90 years.

Many other teams, games and sports have also graced Highbury. The first recorded floodlite cricket match, Baseball, Rugby Union, Hockey and World Championship Boxing for starters. The stadium has featured in films and books.

Highbury charts the reasons behind the club’s relocation from a south London suburb to N5 and how in just sixty days simple playing fields were transformed into a usable stadium thanks to an army of willing workers and how an instant fan base simply queued in an orderly fashion outside wide open doors until they were told to come forward and take their places for the first game.

The subsequent development of the stadium was largely down to its patron at that time – a man who would end his life banned from football – and a succession of Secretary- Managers who had further vision to create a masterpiece of design that would stand the test of time. Each brought innovation in those pre- war days that would go on to shape football, not just Arsenal football.

Having survived two World Wars not quite unscathed, Highbury saw pioneering developments in the use of floodlights, under- soil heating, turnstile counters and video screens, to name but a few, and lived with the arrival of the all- seater age, the Premiership and then the ultimate realisation that home was simply too small to encompass a new future.

Highbury also looks at the eras and the teams that have captivated the crowds down the years. From the Team of the 30s through to The Untouchables and the three Double Winning teams. Highbury has also played host to a variety of events – England Internationals to FA Cup Semi- Finals, not to mention European Cup encounters even before Arsenal themselves entered the UEFA arena.

Highbury: The Story of Arsenal Stadium is a must for any Arsenal supporter and any football supporter who has a sense of tradition. It is packed with memories that will linger long after playing football at Highbury is a mere memory. Long may the memories live and long may we remember them.

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Highbury: The Final Farewell