The Campaign Background – Launched 11th March 2019

The Hampden Collection was established in 2017 to celebrate the 3 Hampden Parks and all that played on them. One of the very little known facts is that Hampden Bowling Club, in Crosshill, Glasgow, sits on the 1st Hampden Park built in 1873. This is the worlds first purposefully built international football ground and where the modern passing game of football was invented.

It is also where some of the greatest victories for Scotland were recorded. Remarkably the original pavilion is still intact and our Artist in Residence, Ashley Rawson, has created a mural depicting Scotland’s victory over England in 1881, one of the six international victories on this ground. This mural will be painted on the pavilion rear wall.

This design includes two legends of the Scottish game. Andrew Watson, who played in that game and went onto Captain Scotland in later games, was the world’s first black international footballer. Furthermore, it includes Charles Campbell, one of the grand architects of the Scottish game and one of Scotland’s greatest midfielders. This research was completed by our Chief Historian, Ged O’Brien, who has extensively researched the life of Andrew Watson and the wider Scottish game. He is one of the foremost sports historians anywhere to be found and built the Scottish National Football Museum at 3rd Hampden.

This mural will be seen by around 200k people per week, as the bowling club rear wall faces the Cathcart District Railway, as well as being seen from the adjacent Cathcart Road.

The 118th anniversary of this historic fixture is Monday 11th March, where the Hampden Collection will launch the crowdfunding page to raise the necessary funds to complete the work.

help our mission to fund it – click here

First Hampden Mural by Ashley Rawson

Mission Accomplished – 8th September 2019

#1stHampdenMural Campaign Success – The 1st Hampden Park, a wonder of the footballing world, will never be ‘Lost” again.

The Hampden Collection kicked off its #1stHampdenMural crowdfunding campaign in March 2019. The mural was designed by Ashley Rawson, Hampden Collection’s Artist-In-Residence, and covers 1st Hampden’s record-breaking, historic and symbolic past. Scotland was unbeaten on this ground, Queens Park was dominant during their tenure and it was the site of the first Scottish Cup Finals.

Following a successful crowdfunding campaign, the mural is now proudly on the rear wall pavilion of Hampden Bowling Club, which is on the site of the 1st Hampden Park. The crowdfunding campaign raised £3,310, received over 90 donations from the local community, sponsored by local businesses and received support from football fans from as far afield as Australia. 

This mural is a permanent monument to the 1st Hampden Park, which is the worlds first purposefully built international football ground and where the modern passing game of football was invented, which is now played or watched by 3.5 billion people around the world. This mural will be seen by around 200,000 people per week viewed from trains passing it on the Cathcart District Railway, as well as passers-by on the busy Cathcart Road.

Graeme Brown, Co-Founder of the Hampden Collection said, “This mural is an incredible tribute to the history of this site and we would like to thank everyone who has donated to the campaign. We have had donations from as far afield as Australia, showing how we are broadcasting 1st Hampden’s glorious past to the world. Our ultimate ambition is to #Restore1stHampden and ensures it becomes an essential part of Scottish History for future generations to enjoy.” 

Ashley Rawson, Artist-In-Residence of the Hampden Collection commented, “Seeing my Hampden mural project finished and ready for all those commuters and football fans to enjoy is fantastic. I’m hoping it will inspire our current Scotland team to mirror the 1882 exploits of Charles Campbell and Andrew Watson! It’s been a real honour and pleasure to help shine a light on a much-ignored piece of Scotland’s football history and I’d encourage everyone to take photos of the mural and spread the news about the 1st Hampden park.”

Ged O’Brien, Chief Historian of the Hampden Collection explained “Andrew Watson is one of our beacons of pride, in the history of sport in Scotland. At a time when he suffered abuse, euphemistically described as ‘vulgar insults by splenetic, ill-tempered players…’ he cemented his place as one of the greatest footballers of all time. In 1882, he graced this ground, in a dazzling 5 goal win for Scotland. Watson proved that it is the ability of a man, not the colour of his skin that is the sole defining characteristic for sporting genius.”

This is a significant addition to Glasgow’s cultural heritage and we encourage everyone to take an interest in Scotland’s role in creating World Football. This is another important step in our overall ambition to #Restore1stHampden. A site that was lost to the public for over a 100 years and our mission continues to raise awareness of its importance, whilst raising the necessary funds to ensure that its legacy remains for future generations to enjoy.

Mural vandalised – 17th Feb 2020

On Monday 17th February 2020, we were alerted to disappointing news, Stewart Todd posted a picture and a headline on Twitter:

‘Seriously, what is wrong with folk? Why would anyone do this?? @Hampdeners

The picture revealed our world famous #1stHampdenMural, showcasing the world’s first purposefully built international football stadium and one of Scotland’s greatest victories, had been seriously vandalised.

There has been a huge amount of hard work gone in to researching, designing, planning and producing this mural not to mention the help received from so many wonderful people from far and wide that contributed to the crowdfunder to help realise the dream. 

This mural belongs to everyone, all those involved in creating it, to the local community, to Glasgow, to Scotland and to the amazing sporting history of this site.

We will restore our mural to it’s original brilliance and ensure it is protected for everyone to enjoy and be proud of once again.

help our mission to repair it – click here

Mural restored – 3rd october 2020

On Monday, 17th February 2020, the text read, “Have you seen what they have done to the mural?” After 12 months of painstaking work, one mindless vandal had destroyed the most important mural in football.

The 1st Hampden Mural was crowdfunded with donations pouring in from throughout the world, celebrates the great Scotland team of 1882, Scottish footballing legend; Charles Campbell, and the world’s first black international footballer; Andrew Watson.

Downtrodden for all of 5 minutes, the Hampden Collection Team went into overdrive. Within three days another crowdfunding was launched, which brought in nearly £3,000 from the generous public and local Community. We held a brilliant fundraiser with the Tartan Army Sunshine Appeal and our sponsors again came to the rescue with Tennent Caledonian, ES Group and Image Systems & Technology donating financially, as well as services and equipment to help us secure the site.

Chris Bryant, Managing Director of ES Group, explained, “The passion and dedication in restoring this mural are infectious, and the site’s history is unbelievable. The mural is only part of this fantastic journey for Hampden Bowling Club, and it’s great to see Tennent Caledonian Brewers playing a part in this journey and numerous other sponsors.”

One final piece in the jigsaw is ensuring the public has a great view from Cathcart Road, and Scotland’s Railways have come to the rescue and have cleared the banking adjacent to the mural. Now there are unobstructed views from both train and road.

Furthermore this week we had two visitors, a father and son visiting the 1st Hampden site. When the ten-year-old son was asked what he thought of his day, he said, “That was amazing”. His proud father, James Morgan explained, “When we stopped to look out across the bowling green, we could almost hear the cheers of crowds past willing on the players and the thwack of boot on leather. It was a magical afternoon. The mural paints a vivid picture of late 19th-century life and the area’s defining role in Glasgow’s, Scotland’s and the world’s sporting lexicon.”

Ashley Rawson, who has restored the mural, commented, “The work mainly involved re-painting figures, as well as the spectacular scoreline. The most inspiring thing was hearing passers by talking about the mural enthusiastically and shouting their support. One lady even cheered: which was lovely! At times the support was overwhelming, and my hope is that everyone’s passion and support continues with a long and fruitful life for the restored 1st Hampden Mural.”

We believe the mural is a beacon of hope in challenging times, majestic in its simplicity and a symbol of community pride. Graeme Brown, Hampden Collection Gaffer, explains, “To do the mural the first time around was herculean. To do it twice was off the scale. We have achieved our ambition, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has supported us over the last two years.”