For the first twenty years of the park’s existence, its sports facilities were rudimentary with matches being played on heavy, uneven pitches and teams having nowhere to change.  

After the war, the Air Raid Precautions warden’s post 4/A/2 by Upper Knollys Terrace was used as a dressing room although it was too small for more than one team at a time.  It seems likely that some of the wartime huts were also used until their demolition circa 1950.

In 1951, a councillor observed how young lads playing sports had to put their clothing into hedges and a letter to the Evening Herald the following year described how players had to dress in a “sea of mud against the hedges”.  The writer went on to suggest that individual clubs could provide a tent until proper facilities became available.   

In 1951, the City Council applied to the Government to borrow money for the erection of premises for use as dressing accommodation and, having received some assurance that it would be granted, tenders were invited the following year for a new building to fit between two existing lavatories next to the Clock Tower where the Meadow Café is situated today.  Designed by the City Engineer, it would be large enough for 400 players and include showers and footbaths for the first time. 

Model of the changing rooms proposed in 1951.  The new building would fit between the pre-existing public lavatories at either end. (The Box accession reference 2732/6)

The building was completed in [date required] and remained until its demolition circa 2002.  

Rear elevation of the changing room in 2002 shortly before it was demolished.
The clock tower is just visible to the right of the building (Alan Baxter & Associates)

In 1962, the City Engineer produced plans for more changing accommodation next to Upper Knollys Terrace, being a more convenient location for the pitches at the park’s southern end.  The building provided space for 66 players and was completed in October 1963. 

The Knollys Terrace changing rooms approaching completion in 1963.  Evening Herald 24th August 1963 (The Box accession reference 2732/21)

Usage has declined in recent years as more sports pitches have been made elsewhere in the city and players, especially young players, often prefer to change at home. When new changing accommodation was commissioned in the Community Sports Hub in 2021, the Knollys Terrace building was put into care and maintenance. 

Knollys Terrace changing rooms in 2022 (Andrew Young)