Before each away game, Pars Review looks at the venue we will be travelling to: its history, with rare photos showing changes to the opposition club's stadium over the years, and how it looks now. On Saturday we travel to Stark's Park, home of our local rivals Raith Rovers.
Raith Rovers moved to Stark's Park in 1891. In 1925 the L-shaped main stand was built - seen in photo above in the late 1920s. The stand was partly funded by the £3000 sale of Alex James to Preston. James would later go onto become an Arsenal legend. The stand is still there today, and this article will show the changes to the other areas of the ground in the past century.
Just out of the picture above (although a shadow can be seen on the right side of the photo) is a covered terrace that ran the length of the pitch opposite the main stand, known as the railway enclosure as trains lines ran directly over the wall on that side of the ground. The areas behind each goal were uncovered until the 1950s when similar enclosures were built behind each goal. The photo below shows these changes.
The stadium's next change was in 1981 when the railway enclosure was replaced with a 1000 seat stand that ran half the length of the pitch on the south (home) side, and new concrete terracing on the north (away) half of the pitch - see photo below.
The 2 photos below show the home end of ground in the 1980s with the main stand and covered terracing behind the goal.
In 1992 new terracing was installed behind the home and away ends. The covered enclosures remained. Only 3 years later, these terraces, plus the enclosures, were demolished and new stands erected behind each goal, and a new stand built on the north railway side of the pitch beside the existing south railway stand.
In 1999 the main stand, which had remained untouched since it was built in 1925, had new seating and steps installed. Work was also done to upgrade the roof on the main stand. The photo here shows the main stand as it looks today.
In the 2000s, the two adjoining stands on the railway side of the ground fell into disrepair and were closed. In 2014, after work had been carried out on the north railway side stand, it was reopened for away fans, when required (as seen here in photo).
Away supporters now sit in the stand behind the goal and in the north railway stand. The away end stand is currently named the McDermid Stand, as it is sponsored by Scottish crime writer Val McDermid, whose father was a scout for Raith. Home fans are housed in the main stand and the stand behind the home end. The small terracing on the side of the pitch beside the main stand side is no longer in use. The current stadium capacity is 8867. The photos below shows the view from the away end of the stadium; an aerial view of Stark's Park (the white roofed north railway side stand is the one currently in use); and from the outside of the stadium.