Sheffield retro: 23 photos showing how Sheffield United's Bramall Lane stadium has changed over the years

Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane home is today an impressive stadium, with a capacity of more than 32,000.

But the venue, which is the world’s oldest professional football ground, has seen huge changes over the years, as this retro photo gallery taking you on a trip back in time shows. Sheffield United may have called it home since 1889, but Bramall Lane began life as a cricket ground in 1855 and the two ends of the ground became known as the Pavilion End and the Football Ground End.

A team representing Yorkshire played 391 first class matches, including 339 County Championship matches, at the stadium between 1863 and 1973. It was also used by Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield FC during its early days. The last cricket match at the ground took place 50 years ago in August 1973, and, soon after, the South Stand was constructed over the cricket square.

The stadium, which was built on a road named after the Bramall family, is steeped in history. It has staged the first floodlit football match, England football internationals and an FA Cup final, and it was also badly damaged in the Sheffield Blitz during the Second World War. The record attendance is 68,287, set during an FA Cup 5th round tie between Sheffield United and Leeds United on February 15, 1936.

These retro photos will take you back through the decades from the present day to 1885, before Sheffield United had even been formed. The images are courtesy of Picture Sheffield.