Chiswick Sports Ground

The Polytechnic Stadium
The Polytechnic Stadium, opened in 1938, was designed by Joseph Addison, the head of the School of Architecture

In 1888 Quintin Hogg bought a boathouse on the Thames at Chiswick. It was for use by the Polytechnic Rowing Club, who had previously raced from Barnes and Twickenham but had no fixed home. When Hogg died in 1903, money was raised to finance the building of a sports ground next to the boathouse.

The Quintin Hogg Memorial Sports Ground, a 40-acre area adjacent to the boathouse, was opened in 1906. Chiswick soon became the home of the Polytechnic Harriers, as well as football, cricket and lawn tennis clubs. Due to the successes of the sports clubs and the large crowds they drew at their events, in 1938 the ground was enlarged by 20 acres and upgraded, with a new cantilevered stadium and a state-of-the-art cinder running track. 1938 also saw the boathouse hosting the BBC’s broadcast of the Oxford-Cambridge University Boat Race.

During World War II the sports ground was put at the disposal of the Army and RAF, and suffered significant bomb damage – the ladies pavilion was destroyed and the boathouse was damaged. The latter was reopened in 1951, but although the running track was resurfaced in 1945, the sports ground was not fully reopened until 1960. Today Chiswick is still the sporting heart of the University of Westminster accommodating football, hockey, netball, lacrosse, cricket and tennis. It also provides sports facilities for local schools. In 2011 the ground hosted the London Cup hockey tournament with teams from England, Belgium, Korea and New Zealand competing.

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Find out more in our poster on Chiswick Sports Ground (PDF 1.8MB).