SPIREITES RETRO: Boxing Day celebrations before authorities ordered Kop to be closed

Our retro image this week shows Luke Beckett wheeling away in celebration after scoring against Darlington on Boxing Day 2000.

Wednesday, 19th October 2016, 3:25 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 4:01 pm
Luke Beckett scores against Darlington at Saltergate

A committed team with talented individuals provided everything that a fan could have asked for in the 2000/01 season, but at a price; this was the last game to be played in front of an occupied Kop that season as the suspect stewardship of chairman Darren Brown unravelled.

The Football Licensing Authority, fed up with Chesterfield’s historic prevarication on the issue of stadium development, ordered that the Kop be closed, and by the time of the LDV Vans Cup game against Macclesfield on January 9th, the fans’ once-proud pinnacle had been reduced to a stubbly hump, shorn of crush barriers, as Phil Tooley’s photo shows.

Several years of patient struggle followed promotion in 2001, as the CFSS were compelled to spend money on the stadium, rather than team-building.

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The Saltergate Kop after it was closed (Pic: Phil Tooley)

The site of the new ground was still a functioning glassworks in 2000, but the seeds that grew into a stadium move were sown long before the new ground saw service in 2010.

The Saltergate Kop after it was closed (Pic: Phil Tooley)