The world's greatest ground? A photographic centenary celebration of Highbury

8. War wounds

Highbury suffered along with the rest of the country during the Second World War. Like many grounds, it was commandeered for the war effort, becoming an Air Raid Precautions (ARP) station.

And like many buildings in London and elsewhere, it suffered from the Luftwaffe. One night in 1941, the North Terrace roof suffered a direct hit and collapsed onto the scrap that was being stored beneath it, causing a large fire and devastating the terrace. 

The southern end - behind which a barrage balloon was tethered - also suffered damage during the Blitz. In October 1940, a 1000lb fell close to the ground and tonnes of concrete were blown over the terraces.   

By the time this photograph was taken on 7 October 1949, the North Terrace had been cleared and tidied, but it wouldn't get its roof back for a while as club and country struggled with the financial consequences of the war. 

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Only realise now how lucky I was that my first ever Premier League match was at Highbury, taken by a season ticket holder during my first visit to London. Thank you Barrie! :-)