Who was in North London first: Arsenal or Spurs?

Before all the Spurs fans rise up once again (see comments on yesterday’s blog), let me just say I really couldn’t care what the answer to the question is, I’m just doing this for historical accuracy.

Many Spurs fans, for obvious reasons, resent Arsenal moving to North London and becoming more successful than them, and in their eyes cheating Spurs out of a place in Division 1 in 1919, on the resumption of football after World War 1. I’m not going to go into that subject here, but obviously the allegations of bribery and corruption against Arsenal are completely unfounded. If anyone, Spurs fan or otherwise, wants to accuse Arsenal of any offence in 1919 then please provide some form of evidence.

However, the circumstances of Spurs being relegated while Arsenal were promoted in 1919, then Arsenal becoming the biggest club in the world in the 1930s, Spurs’ resurgence in the late 1950s and then their glory years (1961-62), and finally the modern Spurs fan having to watch Arsenal’s own resurgence and numerous trophy wins has caused some negative emotions in many Spurs fans – I won’t say all; I’ve met Spurs fans who are perfectly reasonable. But some understandably cling to the “We were here in North London first” argument. The problem with this argument is that the boundary of London has changed.

London was already a city in medieval times when the Normans organised England and Wales into counties. In the south of England counties were largely existing divisions of the old Kingdom of Wessex, including Middlesex (named after the ‘Middle Saxons’ who settled there a few centuries earlier). Henry I granted control of Middlesex to London, and until the late 19th century London and Middlesex were administered together for most purposes.

‘London’ at this time was strictly speaking what we now know as the City of London, also known simply as ‘the City’ or the ‘square mile’, and largely taken over these days by the financial industry. In earlier times people actually lived in the City of London of course, but eventually most migrated to the growing urban sprawl outside the old City walls. As time went on ‘London’ gobbled up its surrounding villages and became bigger and bigger, though officially London was still just the old area of the City within its medieval boundary.

In 1886 – coincidentally Arsenal’s founding year – the Conservatives won a general election, but without enough seats for a majority. They allied themselves with the Liberal Unionists, who agreed to support the Tories in exchange for certain policies being implemented, one of which was reorganisation of local government. Accordingly, new county administrations were implemented under the Local Government Act of 1888, including the formation of a new County of London from 21 March 1889.

The County of London was made up of the City itself and a large number of districts surrounding it on both sides of the River Thames. In 1900 the old local districts and parishes and their administrative councils were reorganised into 28 Metropolitan Boroughs, including Chelsea, Fulham, Woolwich (one of the largest in area) and Islington – which of course includes Highbury. So both Arsenal’s home (south of the river) at the time of the formation of the new county and the one they moved to in 1913 were within the official new London. Tottenham remained in Middlesex, where it had been ever since its formation as a small hamlet about 1,000 years ago.

Things stayed this way from 1900 to 1965, when London’s increasing size necessitated further reorganisation. Under the London Government Act 1963 a new ‘Greater London’ was formed around the County of London, which then disappeared and became known as ‘Inner London’. At this point Tottenham became part of the new borough of Haringey, and for the first time part of London.

The county of Middlesex disappeared, mostly into Greater London, with odd bits going into other surrounding counties. The name Middlesex lives on as a postal district and the name of a county cricket club.

So, rather appropriately some might say, Tottenham only became part of London on 1 April 1965. What this means of course is that they’ve never won the League as a London club, and Arsenal were the first London club to do the Double! And also the second and third.

To emphasise that last point, here’s the Wikipedia page for the Municipal Borough of Tottenham that features a map titled “Tottenham within Middlesex in 1961″. I’ve added this as at least one Spurs fan seemed to think that when Tottenham became a borough in the 1890s it stopped being part of Middlesex. No such luck for him, as the status of Tottenham could not get it out of Middlesex and into the capital with Arsenal for another 70 years.

On 20 September another Spurs fan materialised to claim (see comments) that Tottenham has been part of London since 1857! Obviously he is wrong. It is true that the ‘London postal district’, which included everything within about 12 miles of St Paul’s, was instigated in 1857, but that was just for the Post Office. It also included Romford in Essex and various places that were and still remain in Surrey and other counties. Nothing whatsoever to do with when any boundaries changed or new administrations were formed. Straw-clutching. If straw-clutching were an Olympic event the Totts would win every time.

For further detail please do a web search for London Government Act 1963, Middlesex, Local Government Act 1888, etc. It’s all out there.

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160 thoughts on “Who was in North London first: Arsenal or Spurs?

    • Why are you commenting on the spuds not winning a title since 60-61, that’s not what this article is about.

      • I believe the fact is Arsenal were south of the river until 1913, in Plumstead.
        Spurs have been located in the same location North of the river since 1882. In that time Arsenal have moved location twice.
        Arsenal then 19.5 miles away from Spurs in Plumstead decided to move 4.5 miles from Spurs and now say they are the original team from North London?
        I would say postcodes came into being in 1857 and Tottenham was under N (london North) in 1917 it was divided in 22 numbered districts.
        The Northern head district was designated as N1 and the rest of the numbering followed the alphabetical order of the other districts’ main names. Spurs became N17.
        Basically Arsenal are a rare example of a football club that leaves it’s original location.
        Never before had a club moved so far from it’s roots.
        The only club to have done so since is Wimbeldon.
        I know it must hurt to know your not originally from North of the river and share your roots with Crystal Palace, Millwall and Charlton. However, the fact is your’e not from North London.

      • It’s actually less than 15 miles by road from Plumstead to White Hart Lane, which means you’re about 25% inaccurate. This also applies to the rest of your comment.

  1. yaaaaaaaawwwwwwn…. i almost managed to get half way through reading this before I keeled over with boredom. whats wrong with you? the RVP or Modric transfer saga is more interesting and that’s saying something!

    • Get a life muppet! The title/headline told you exactly what it was about, so what are you complaining about!

      Must be a dustbin! I know how much you lot struggle with using your brains!

      • Lets go back to the formation of Arsenal:
        It all began with a character called Henry Norris, a London property developer. Norris was chairman of Fulham FC, but was aware that his club lacked the potential to take on the might of the northern and midland clubs who had dominated the The Football League since its inception. During 1910 he attempted to merge Fulham with another struggling club, Woolwich Arsenal, but the merger was opposed by the other London clubs and fell through.
        Norris decided that he would have more control at Woolwich Arsenal, so he transferred his money south of the river and rescued the club when it went into liquidation. In the 1912-13 season when they finished bottom of the league and were relegated to Division 2.
        To increase the club’s revenue, Norris decided to move from Plumstead to a more central location. He bought land next to Gillespie Road Tube station, a master stroke as it gave the club the advantage of the capital’s public transport system and consequently a huge catchment area.
        Despite objections from Spurs and Clapton Orient ( as it was their catchment area) the League gave its approval to the move and The Arsenal kicked-off the 1913-14 season at their half-finished new ground.
        ( A bit like Fulham wanting to build a new stadium in Clissold Park today. Arsenal and Spurs would not be too happy)

        We all know that for the first post-war season (1919-20) the League decided to expand Division 1 to 22 clubs. In the past such expansions were effected by promoting clubs into the league and no relegations. So, why suddenly the change?
        League president John McKenna of Liverpool (a good friend H. Norris) invited applications for Spurs’ and Chelsea’s positions. McKenna cited ‘special reasons’ why Chelsea should be elected unopposed (a court case proved that players had fixed the result of the Man. Utd. vs. Liverpool fixture which United had won and without those points United would have finished below Chelsea).
        However, he then proposed that Arsenal should be promoted for the Spurious reason that they had been members of the league longer than Spurs.
        What is strange is that Wolves, who finished 4th above Arsenal by 2 points were founder members of the league and had been in the league longer than both Spurs and Arsenal.
        Basically, therein lies the corruption. Mckenna had something to hide -probably more fixed matches were threatened to be exposed by Norris .
        Please tell me why Arsenal would be promoted over the four teams that finished above them?
        It would have made more sense for Derby( one of the original 12 members of the league) to be promoted as they won the 2nd div. Even Preston (runners up) were one of the 12 original members of the league!
        It just does not make sense that the 5th placed team is given promotion for the reason they had been league members longer than the relegated Spurs when the Wolves ( founder members) Derby( Div 2 title winners and 1 of the 12 original members of the league) and Preston (Div 2 runners up and also original members) finished above them.
        You cannot escape the fact that it’s illogical and must be something to do with Norris having something over McKenna or their friendship.
        Derby, Preston and Wolves and all been members of the league before Spurs and finished above Arsenal.
        So, therein lies the animosity. Spurs first had their catchment area impeded on, and then lost their place in the 1st division to the same club for a very spurious reason.
        Arsenal are the only club to have earned promotion to the top flight by their own merit .

        In 1927 Norris was censured by the FA for financial irregularities (sounds familiar) and lost the libel case he brought in response; it was effectively the end of his involvement with the game.

      • Some of what you say is almost true. Obviously you don’t have any hard evidence of corruption though, do you? Just assumptions and then some more assumptions.

  2. Love it!

    Sound facts presented in a logical way culminating in a great point made

    The point being…we share an intense rivalry, one where emotions tend to get in the way of facts

    That’s football!! Gonna enjoy the Olympics but footie is by far and away a passion

    Thanks for an educational read!

    • The argument, as the ‘author’ mentioned’ in the title, is that Arsenal MOVED to North London from South-East London. That fact is undeniable. Whether boundaries move is irrelevant. Spurs have not moved ground (yet). Arsenal did move north of the river. Therefore, there is no argument you muppett (the author).

      • Why is ‘author’ in quotes? Are you disputing the validity of his claim as to creation of this post? Spurs never moved ground, they were a Middlesex club until the mid-1960’s. You are correct in one respect, that there is no argument. But you misspelled ‘muppet’ (note the proper use of quotation in this instance).

  3. You are wasted in your job. You should be a conveyancing solicitor. We all know the real answer but appreciate your pedantry – now bore off! Cheers.

  4. you are even more boring than any arse*al team managed by george graham or don howe!! Spurs were in the area that is North London from the first day the club was formed in 1882 (4 years before your nomads for woolwich). CASE CLOSED.

    • “The area that is North London” was not IN London until after the Beatles released your pathetic club’s theme song: “Help!” North London is ours; it is you, not we, who are the interlopers. If anyone had a reason to complain about Arsenal moving across the river, it was the northernmost club in London at the time, the club currently known as Leyton Orient. Do they complain? No. Because they are not a bunch of mugs who think themselves a big club based on having won trophies a generation or two ago.

  5. there is no proof of bribe in 1919, and i as a spurs fan would think, its much more possible that Henry Norris made the liverpool chairman scared, that the liverpool and man utd result fixing didnt see the publics eye, so he supported arsenal over spurs. But in truth is doesnt matter if he did anything or not, this has made the feud between the clubs much more fun !

    • What exactly is interesting about Spurs. Name one thing that is more interesting in their entire history. Silly spud, get back in your sack.

  6. Why the obsession with arsenal being a north London club? We aren’t just the biggest club in north London, we are the biggest and best club in all of London!

    I live in the suburbs of south London. On matchday my station and train are packed with gooners (and hardly a Chelsea Chav in sight!)

    Arsenal, greatest team in London!

    • Gooner Jack – by Greatest team do you mean the same team that haven’t won a trophy in eight years? you gooners are all the same thugs and idiots.

  7. i am sorry i slipped into a coma whilst reading this, almost as funny as the slang one yesterday, cant wait for the next witty musings from the unquestionable talent of the woolwich wanderer.

  8. you might want to do some research into the man who was arsenal chairman in 1919, i think you will find he was banned from football in general in the 1930’s for corruption.

  9. this is all technically correct.
    However,, football support is about ‘patches’ amongst other things. Supporters identify with their area very strongly, just look at the oposition to the idea of moving from North London to stratford.
    Any Londoner will tell you that the river thames divides the people, so moving from south to north would definately be viewed as usurping.
    This l explains most of the resentment, however, the fact the arsenal have been successful probably doesn’t help.
    coys

  10. i have to agree with Brett on this one — yaaaaaaaawwwwwwn is that the history lesson over with (thought I’d left all that boring crap behind me when I left school). also you say and I quote : “and finally the modern Spurs fan having to watch Arsenal’s own resurgence and numerous trophy wins” — can’t recall that many of those in recent years (is it 6 or 7 years without any silverware – I know that Spurs haven’t won that many in recent – but they have won some).

    • One Leauge cup in 7 years and two league cups in the last 20 years, I don’t mind hearing seven years from the chavs or manure you lot are just a joke. Your the jealous, bitter ugly sister. This artical is just a bit of trivia, but you spuds are as much as you jump on seven year band wagon are a trivial pathetic club who need the tax payer to fund your stadium. Kiss my Arsenal!

      Reply ↓

  11. norris bribed chairman to vote to allow arsenal to relocate in 1913. he bribed chairmen to let arsenal into the first div. he hired herbert chapman who had been serving a life time ban from football for paying players during the fisrt ww while at leeds city (leeds city went into liquidation as a result and so frankly yet another major wrong can be laid at chapman’s door as he is ultimately resonsible for the existence of leeds united), he then bribed chairmen to overturn the life long ban buteventually matters caught up with him and the tory mp for fulham (that was norris’ real job and prob how he learned to bribe people) was himself banned from football for life. norris had taken over arsenal in 1910 when they were in liquidation (oh happy days). chapman was banned from football for making illegal payments to recruit a player and also for using the clubs money for his own purposes, also known as theft. the daily mail ran the story and the tory mp brought a libel suit, which he lost. so there was proof of him stealing and bribing, so we know he was capable of bribery and no other reason has been put forward as to why the team finsihing sixth would be promoted.

    • Nice one Cyril – your distortion of the facts seemingly knows no bounds. Clearly the reason Arsenal were voted in was because the northern clubs wanted to play a proper London team and not some two-bob outfit from nearby Middlesex. That should be obvious – even to a Tottenham fan.

  12. “I’m not going to go into that subject here, but obviously the allegations of bribery and corruption against Arsenal are completely unfounded.”

    Obviously yes… and said from such a neutral point of view. Afraid we will have to differ in our opinions on this. Football as a whole was corrupt back then, so I won’t say it was exclusive to Arsenal.

    Still gutted you guys finished above us last year. Really thought we deserved more as we were quality for so much of the season, but that is the game I guess, we can point at lots of things that cost us, but you finished above us fair and square (if that’s how you pronounce Fulop ;o) ). Looking forward to the new season. Hopefully it will have all the excitment this season did, but maybe with a better outcome for us spurs.

  13. Err your then ex chairman admitted in the 30s that”money had exchanged hands” with regards to the 1919 cheating: as for proving it. you DISPROVE it and I will be interested to see how you explain 1919 otherwise. But being a gooner I am sure that you will come up some rubbish.

    BTW there was no internet in the 30s, and paper proof is difficult to find unless you have access to the local newspaper records (paper ones I mean to which I do not have access) many of which succumbed to the Blitz.But this was reported by whoever it was that asked him the question at that time and as he was a neutral lying was pointless..You exchairman was unwell at the time and could see his maker approaching, so I guess he wanted redemption for his sin..

    It was reported in newspapers & created a hailstorm of flak and did much to undermine the glamour of three titles in a row won then. The only likely source now would be a book written at the time if you can find one. To us it us historical fact but you lot usually ignore it or come up withy rubbish like the above. How about you prove that I was not the one he told? Or else try explaining why and how you were promoted in 1919 BTW during WW1 you played your mateches at WHL and is was vice versa in WW2. so I guess that they wree illiterate and colour blind thought you were us .

    The mere fact that you even dared to answer this and call it a supposed”allegation” shows the paucity of your knowledge. Your club cheated, then admitted it: cope with it!!! It is why we laugh at your record for being the only unrelgated side in the PL as you have NEVER earned the right to even be there.

    • That’s your proof? It was in an article that no one has a copy of but the writer was impartial and this is known by all Spuds even though you don’t actually have a copy of said article because all copies were destroyed in the war!!!! That sounds like concrete proof to me. What a tool. Off you trot, back to Middlesex with you sir.

    • 13 league titles, 3 doubles, 10 FA Cups, 2 league cups, 1 Cup Winners Cup, 1 Fairs cup and 12 Charity Shields and a Champions League Final.

      Oh and 15 years running in the Champions League. 15. lets count them together:-

      1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. 15 years.

      So by that measure, you would have to qualify for the champions league for the next 15 years running to be seen in the same bracket as us (assume we dont qualify at the same time). So, you’re at least 15 years behind us?

      Forever in our shadow, North London is ours.

    • What a plonker! Ever hear of innocence until proven guilty!

      Here you go then; all your managers, chairmen and players (except sol) are rapists! Prove me wrong, otherwise it’s true!

    • Btw, Norris never said that he gave a bribe to get us promoted, fact. He did however admit that he sanctioned backhanders to clubs so he could buy their players, this actually had more to do with the overall corruption in football at the time.

      The only valid rumour (never proven) about genuine wrong doing regarding our promotion, was that Norris blackmailed the FA over exposing the corruption in the league. Specifically a match fixing scandal between man utd and Liverpool.

    • It was common in those days for clubs to be voted in to leagues rather than simply promoted on the basis of their league position. Whether the voting was on the basis of payments, I don’t know how to go about proving or disproving it. This is the first I’ve heard of Norris admitting to any bribery. He was removed as club chairman for misappropriating some of the club’s funds, but that’s the extent of it I think. Oh, and maybe instead of meeting his maker weighing on his mind, maybe it was outrage at being removed from his post despite being the largest shareholder, that guided any ‘confession’ he might have made? All ifs, buts and maybes.

      Also, regarding the ‘fixing’, Spurs did finish bottom of the league previously, and were to be relegated (until it was decided to expand the league), Chelsea were the other team who were in the relegation spot, but they were allowed to remain in because of other considerations.

      http://www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk/2010/02/02/the-fixed-promotion-the-corruption-and-the-match-fixing-how-the-football-league-does-business/

      It is a possible alternate explanation. I don’t care much either way. Maybe Norris was a crook, and fixed our promotion. But, if he could manage to do that, the League must have been open to corruption, and I doubt Arsenal would have been the only club to benefit in such a scenario. Which is what makes the explanation given there a bit more believable. (Even if, as you say, money was exchanged)

    • Ah but you forget one crucial point Spurs were relegated for being the worst team in the league the year before Arsenal were voted promotion. The match fixing affected Chelsea not Spurs, you were relegated because as ever you were shit, and more to the point as now, your board of directors were hated by other league chairman, Namely for opposing introduction+forming of other London clubs+being pariahs of the league.

    • Spurs are barely a team. Perhaps literally, after all, they were managed by Mr. Bankruptcy himself, Harry Redknapp. Portsmouth may not make it, and West Ham, Bournemouth and Southampton all got relegated due to his stupid spending… Can Spurs be next? Certainly they can.

      • Tell you what matey you doubt that’s true ring up Enfield or Harringay council and they will confirm it, I was born in 1960 in Chase Farm – birth certificate says Middlesex not Greater London, brother born same place 4 years later has same, 65 Tottenham and Enfield became part of Greater London fact end of, your just vermin from a small shit village

    • What are we sacared of? I am getting tired of spuds who say this seven year thing. What have you won in seven years? One league cup, and every year you are behind us in the league. But what if I say twenty years? What have you won in twenty years? Two League cups. I don’t mind hearing seven years from the chavs or manure you lot are just a joke. Your the jealous, bitter ugly sister. This artical is just a bit of trivia, but you spuds are as much as you jump on seven year band wagon are a trivial pathetic club who need the tax payer to fund your stadium. Kiss my Arsenal!

  14. Proof!? it’s widely accepted that Arsenal were involved in bribery, read any football history book, it’s widely accepted as a fact.

    • Just because something is widely accepted as a fact doesn’t make it true. After all, Mr. Gorbachev did not tear down that wall. More to the point, there was no Dial Square-Eastern Wanderers match on the Isle of Dogs on 11 December 1886. Yet that story about the alleged first match in the history of the club that became Arsenal has been peddled for decades, when recent research shows that it could not possibly be true.

  15. Another pointless human being…. It is no wonder fans of every other sport think us football fans are idiots – we spend half our time pedalling hate and the whole “my dad is bigger than your dad” BS really winds me up.

    Time to grow up and realise we are all different, and that yes, that may even mean we support different football teams.

    Angry from islington successfully removed from my newsnow feed…..

  16. Most desperate artioal I have possibly ever read from a gooner. You lot must be really worried about the shift.

    • “the shift”?

      what shift is this? you have finished behind Arsenal for 17(?) years. Its so long I have lost count. How is there a shift if you are still constantly finishing behind us?

      please explain this shift to me? You had a 10 point gap on us and STILL finished behind us. That was your chance last season, expect the gap to widen again.

      • LOL, when i have a bowel movement i’m shifting something, good ol’ spuds, always good to poke with sticks, point, and laugh at. lol

        Forever in our shadow : )

  17. It’s a well considered and well referenced article. My Grandfather who was born, bred and died in Totteham in 1968 had lived there for 88 years always maintained that Tottenham a team he obviously supported and followed all his life was always a ‘proper’ Middlesex club and always said that it only ever started being called a London club in the fifties when games started to be filmed and it was just that by then no one seemed to know after the war where middlesex boundries started and ended. For whatever reason, he never liked the club being called a ‘London Club’. But I guess all this has been obscured for decades now and the reality is it means little. Tottenham is now as far removed from the North London I knew as a kid as the docklands is to the Olympic stadium. As for the cheating allegations, it’s all nonsense, club owners in those basically did what they like when they like to whom they like, including giving back handers to officials and players whenever it suited them.

  18. Deluded Sp*rs fans still living in the past. Records books show the truth. Imagine, still harking on about something from 1919. Quite sad. Maybe they have roots really in Scotland….as they always seem to be banging on about some war or battle from 400 years ago!?

    • Actually, it’s Arsenal who have roots in Scotland, including David Danskin and Fred Beardsley. In fact, until George Graham left as manager in 1995, no Arsenal squad was ever worth a damn without a significant Scottish presence (and, frequently, also an Irish one). Maybe that’s why so many fans around England think of Arsenal as a “foreign club,” and that it was already a belief before the Gallic-isation by Arsene Wenger.

  19. Nice try. Well researched and dare I say it, even quite interesting. Does however miss the crux of most Spurs fans annoyance, which is regardless of local govt. gerrymandering, bribery and league jumping, whatever you choose to call the area, WE WERE HERE FIRST. I genuinely wish you good luck for next season, you’ll need it without RVP…

    • hahaha dont you worry about us, we’ll be just fine. You however…back to midtable obscurity for the next 10 years for you lot!

  20. I’ve been pointing this out to deluded Totteringham fans for years, but they don’t seem to have the intellectual apparatus to understand the principles involved…

  21. Jesus – a bit effing desperate, even for a gooner.
    Stick to filling-in the ‘oh please don’t go Robin’ petitions

  22. Sometimes, every now and then, I feel ashamed to be a human. This is one of those times! I cannot relate to your ridiculous denial and desperation, your history lesson or the team you support, but unfortunately I am like you a human. This disgusts me, that I could have anything at all in common with you. You, like nearly every Arse fan and the disgraceful club (criminal network) you follow, are without doubt, the most undeserving PL club & fans in English football history! This is why you lot can never stop writing about the mighty SPURS, cos secretly deep down everyone of you wish you were SPURS fans, without disgrace, without a disgusting history, without a bunch of morons as fellow fans. Change clubs, or support the SCUM forever in disgrace!

    • This is the funniest post ever ha ha
      Arsenal try to be like you looooooooooooooool.

      What have you ever done that we would be jealous of??
      I think you need help,the most deluded comment ever.
      You lot make me laugh more than any club out there.

  23. Is there a point to this other than confirming that you’re a first class prick with a bit of a love for all things Spurs

  24. .Surely wether you bribed your way into the division or not is a more interesting point and is disputed by many Arsenal fans but accepted by many too.I understand it is generally accepted that “money changed hands” and i beleive you were promoted whilst 6thin the second division, so it certainly was not on merit and at the expense of others including Tottenham who were a First Division club at the time.What is more relevant is that you moved into the catchment area of an established club and that WAS against the rules at the time and illegal by the Football Associations own ruling.So wether you were the first club in North London is debateable as by rights you should still be in Woolwich.However ,if you were, the rivalry would not be so intense and we would probably hate Orient instead which seems a little harsh,i much prefer to dislike everything Arsenal and reading the contents of your own pages reminds me why I do.

    • No, Spurs were formed in Tottenham, which, in 1882, was in Middlesex. NOT London, North or otherwise. Like most Spurs fans, you got a major reading comprehension problem.

  25. I’ve honestly, in my 2 weeks of being able to read, never read such a nonsense-filled litany of bullshit. The garbage you have presented here is, in all seriousness, nauseatingly boring, but the comments beneath it make for even more face-palming. Your braindead following really ought to try and think for themselves and not proclaim that this stream of absolute horseshit is “Brilliant!!!! xD ZOMG FTW”.

    “I really couldn’t care what the answer to the question is, I’m just doing this for historical accuracy.” Says it all, don’t give up your day-job you pseudo-intellectual clown.

  26. Mate you need to get yourself a bird, and if you’ve already got one then you need a better looking one!

  27. You don’t care and neither does anyone else so why waste the bandwidth? Historical accuracy doesn’t add any more interest to the debate. If being “the first club in what was previously but actually the second based on what is now taking into consideration the boundary adjustments and political geography of the district to have done the double” grants you any extra bragging rights then I suspect you need to take a good look at yourself.

  28. The irony is palpable. Any of you goons realise that the white and navy in your kits is Herbert Chapman’s way of paying homage to the great Tottenham Hotspur FC. Everything we ever did you wanted to emulate. We even allowed you the privilege of playing at North London’s home of football whilst you nomads had no ground at all, yet all you can think about is slating us and trying to cover up the cracks of your shady goings on. Why don’t you focus on the positives like your delightful stadium or the prodigal son Jacky boy (will he ever play again?) instead of continually focusing on us. “Forever in our shadow” you say? Laughable, I don’t even see your shadow across the Thames. North London is Lilywhite.

    • Another Spud who can’t read. White Hart Lane WAS NOT IN LONDON until 1965! And how, exactly, was Tottenham “great” in Chapman’s time? At that point, you had two FA Cups and no League titles. Neither did Arsenal, but Chapman changed that. By the time Chapman died, he had already led Arsenal to as many titles in a span of 3 years as Tottenham have won in 120. The reason you don’t see our shadow is that you are blind as a bat. Which is appropriate, since Tottenham is so crime-ridden it could use some Batman.

  29. Arsenal were placed in north London by the FA to try and stop the growing success and fanbase of Spurs. The FA were seeking national dominance and the Southern League at this point was the only real threat to the FA monopolising the modern game. Spurs had already embarrssed the FA by becoming and reamaing the only non FA team to win the FA cup. Spurs’ fanbase was growing and the FA needed a Southern Club to rival the tottenham’s popularity. Arsenal were recreated for this sole purpose.

    • Henry norris was his name. Up to his elbows in the unsightly. He was sent down by the old boys club to sort out the mess. Read about how you secured the land to build highbury. Norris was a high up member of the masons. The fa’s history is intertwined with the masons. That’s why Spurs were never liked. The FA wanted to control the funds and Spurs were the uninvited guests. The FA had originally closed Arsenal down. Then they put their man in charge and rewrote history. After a big shake up in the following decades due to the influence of FIFA the masons in the FA starting losing their grip on power and Norris was caught out.

      • Utter nonsense the FA didnt close down Arsenal at all get yo r facts straight you spud lol. Spurs have never been liked as the club has always been full of slimey wankers. it’s part of your tradition. get used to it

  30. i think you scummers need to get a job or something, wasting my time reading desperate bullshit printed by some idiot who hasn’t got a scooby what he’s going on about, 1 team in north london, thats tottenham!!! why dont you cheating scumbags go back down south where you come from, losers!!! and im putting a big big wager on us finishing way above you idiots this year!! im actually surprised you gooners have the intelligence to count further than 3, one of you counted to 17, give him a well done sticker, get him in your club shop and sell all your very wanted RVP crap for that in pence!! tossers!!

    • Explain how Tottenham are the only club in North London. Is it by glory? Is it by the better stadium? Is it by the bigger fanbase? It is by none of those things. Even if Tottenham HAD been in North London in the early 1930s, which they were not, it was at that point that Arsenal surpassed them, and you’ve never caught us since. And you never will.

  31. I’m sorry have you provided evidence that allegations are “completely unfounded” because if not he can not claim they are completely unfounded either.

    Spurs fans have met Arsenal fans who are perfectly reasonable but clearly from the style of your writing you would not be one of them.

  32. Such a pile of dog shit that even the retarded goons would never say this to your face. So the administrative areas change and suddenly Tottenham jumps into London. So desperate and just shows how even Chelsea are in possession of real football fans that Arsensal just don’t have.

    As for ‘success’. Chelsea are more successful that Arsenal and Spurs these days. All at the hands of a corrupt thieving gangster. Sounds like the success of a certain club’s past, the one that’s still squatting in N. London. You can’t celebrate 1 and condemn the other, it’s identical. And at least Abramovic loved football and that’s why he got involved. Norris just wanted more avenues to bribe and corrupt his way through West London politics.

    • Check the history you fool,we are the biggest club in london weather you like it or not.History does not lie.

      I have seen Arsenal win the league 5 times,how many have you lot seen??
      End of.

  33. Listen you spud dick heads – who cares about your shite team and your meagre history, we came from south of the river and invaded your patch, the fact that we might have cheated our way into the league at your expense makes it oh so much sweeter. Deal with it, move on or f*** off.

    • The only ones not moving on are you gooners. you’ve been constantly banging on about how $h1te Spurs are for nearly a year now. The only conclusion I can draw from that is that you are indeed running scared – scared that maybe, just maybe THFC is starting to move upwards whilst you club is starting to slide downwards. Understandable, lack of trophies does that to you & we’ve been there so we should know.

      • I think thats the other way around mate.

        Remind me again which club brought out a dvd for getting a 4-4 draw??
        We didn’t even do that when we beat you 5-4 in a classic.

        Which fan’s were wearing mind the gap t-shirts mid way through the season again??

        Some of you are a bunch of deluded mug’s,who i can feel the jealousy pouring out of every pour.

      • “you’ve been constantly banging on about how $h1te Spurs are for nearly a year now”…. I think you may find it’s been a tad longer than that.

  34. Did you know in the 60’s Arsenal got a crowd of six [ stress not sixty ] thousand odd for a first division match with Leeds Utd. That seems to be a far more revealing fact than any of the drivel above!

    • Arsenal left their historic Highbury home for the 60,000 capacity Emirates Stadium in order to meet demand for tickets, but back on 5 May 1966 a 6,000 capacity ground would have been more appropriate. That night just 4,554 people watched Arsenal’s top flight match with Leeds United and the crowd was so sparse that fires were lit on the old North Bank terrace in order to keep the few spectators warm on a cold spring evening. This shocking attendance was partly due to Liverpool’s Cup Winners’ Cup final with Dortmund being televised live at the same time, in an era when football matches on TV were few and far between.

      Hope this answer’s your simple minded question.good day.

      • Nice one marquess. That’s what happens when an individual stat gets quoted out of context. Hmm, something the author of this should have considered?

      • BTW, yes, bringing out DVD’s of League games, no matter how great that particular game was, is very embarrassing. The saddest one for me was the DVd for the 9-1 dicking of a very poor Wigan side! Now that WAS an embarassment!!

      • Cup final or not, shows goons would rather be at home watching quality football rather than their own shite! Fu*k off back to Woolwich travellers!

  35. I thought there was a river dividing North and South London. Simple. What the fcuk do I know? Why do the Arse care otherwise when everyone else the arguments are bollocks.

  36. ARSHOLS can suck eggs.. the only reason u finished above us last season is cuz we let u back in it and we went on a baron run! Oh and that spikey nosed pr*ck rvp but he’s off so um foooked and b4 u fickle bunch mention that little oik modric he won’t b nowhere near as missed as rvp will b for u ARSHOLS!!!!!!

  37. Have I missed something? This is essentially an arsenal blog Isn’t it? Why are so many spuds on here getting cross? Don’t think I’ve ever read a spuds blog, let alone commented on one. Must be all those years spent in the shadow of the “mighty” spurs…

    • The reason you haven’t read a Spuds blog is that writing a blog requires basic thinking, writing and typing skills, which 99 percent of Tottenham fan lack. If they had basic thinking skills, they’d support another club. Possibly the 2nd club in North London… Leyton Orient.

  38. What’s the point of this pile of sh1te??? Thanks for the history of London.. blah, blah, blah….but WAY TOO BORING!!!!
    You’re headline was the question ‘who were in North London first?’ and the answer is: Tottenham. Arsenal relocated on Spurs’ doorstep – fact – regardless of which boundaries lay where.
    What a pointless pile of cack!!!!!!!!!!!
    Oh and the reason Spurs fans are reading this is because it has ‘Spurs’ in the ‘headline’ – dipsh1t !!!!!!

  39. Reading the Spurs fans comments on your thoroughly entertaining piece, I couldn’t help but notice how many of them complained of boredom, falling asleep, etc all indicative of a low attention span. Is this the result of years of conditioning at White Hart Lane?

  40. Ah, I do like a good bit of historical research. Especially when the truth of it drives the Spuds to such obvious despair at the trashing of their ridiculous claims to be a football club…

  41. A good post. However, I find it ironic that you challenge your doubters to back arguments up with facts, whilst you base this on Wikipedia entries. Might as well source your information from your mates sister’s cat, just as reliable.

    • Yeah mate, which of us can say they haven’t gone on to Wikipedia and made up stuff about local government acts of parliament and county boundary changes, I know I have.

      This is well documented historical fact, I’m not claiming Bob Holness played sax on Baker St.

      • I’m just saying..yes the likelihood is that its spot on, and as I said, an interesting read. Was the act published on the internet? Doubt it. Aside from that, it looks like you did your research, just if you don’t want people to question you then don’t source Wikipedia, that’s all.

  42. Just reading about Arsenal lowest attendance of 4,554 it is still 4054 higher than The lowest ever gate recorded by Tottenham Hotspur at home against Bristol Rovers on 9 Sept 1907.

    • Considering Tottenham did not join the football league until 1908, are you seriously comparing a non-league attendance in 1907 to Arsenal’s pathetic top flight attendance of 4,554 against Leeds in 1966? In the same year when Tottenham played Leeds just a few months later, the attendance was close to 44,000. So if you want to compare apples with pears go ahead, I went to a Spurs reserve match once there was only a few hundred there, you can use that one if you like. Personally I will continue to compare league crowds. Tottenham’s lowest ever league crowd is just under 10,000, so over double that of Woolwich.

  43. Pingback: Arsenal Lose Their First Game Back In Division One On This Day, 30th August 1919 | Arsenal On This Day

  44. Almost… Tottenham hasn’t been in Middlesex since 1894 – Tottenham became its own Borough until the London Local Government reorganisation.

    The two clubs played in the London Combination during the first world war. Sorry, I know you were hoping for us to move to the OS so you could criticise us on safer ground. diddums.

    • Oh Garrys (is that a proper name?). How sad for you that you aren’t too good on history. Firstly, where anyone played in WW1 is of no importance to this argument, and if you think about it for a moment you will realise that many clubs even now play in leagues in different COUNTRIES to where they’re based – Berwick Rangers, Swansea, Cardiff and AS Monaco to name but four off the top of my head.
      But moving on to the main thrust of your argument, such as it is: Tottenham became an urban district in the 1890s and then a borough in the 1930s, we all know that. But that was nothing to do with London, that was the national reorganisation of local government that I referred to in my blog post. Tottenham didn’t move anywhere by becoming either an urban district or a borough, it just had a different status within its county – and if you need reminding, that was Middlesex, not London.
      In case you are still confused, I’ve added an extra paragraph and a helpful graphic with a map to the blog post. The map is called “Tottenham within Middlesex in 1961″. Do you see? Tottenham WITHIN Middlesex. In 1961. So double diddums. With knobs on.

  45. The answer is there right in front of you….Tottenham was also a London district postcode whilst being part of Middlesex. Nearly all of London North of the Thames was in Middlesex right to the river lea. Same as Woolwich was in the South district of London and part of Kent. 1857 Tottenham was a Northern London district postcode. End of day Spurs have always played North of the Thames whilst Arsenal did not. Arsenal moved to where the sun shone brighter and saved their club from liquidation. Lucky for the North London Gooners as who would they have supported? if Arsenal never moved from South London ?

    • Well it’s another nice try Tony, but sorry, you’re wrong. For a start, Woolwich was part of London from the time London became a county, which as we know was in 1889. Meanwhile Tottenham stayed in Middlesex until 1965 when Greater London was formed. But that’s not your main point, is it? Postcode districts were, as you say, introduced in 1857 for the ‘London postal district’, which as I’m sure you’re aware was a rough circle with a 12 mile radius around the central post office at St Martin’s Le Grand, near St Paul’s Cathedral. But this was just for use by the Post Office, it was nothing whatsoever to do with official city, borough, district, county or any other kind of boundary. The east of the circle went to Romford – are you going to tell me that Romford is also in London? Romford is in Essex, man! Always has been!
      So north of the river, south of the river, yada yada, blah blah blah. The fact is Arsenal have always been a London team and Tottenham haven’t. Full stop.

      • Romford in Essex? It goes to show how inaccurate this blog is. Romford is in the London borough of Havering (and has been since 1965).

        However the truth is Romford, Tottenham, Islington and Woolwich are in the conurbation of London a phrase first coined in 1915 (and thus before the move north of the river by Woolwich Arsenal) The reason for the phrase being that the historical medieval towns and villages, which at one time, surrounded the old City of London, had been swallowed by the giant city. So although the historical county of Middlesex still existed until 1965 for all intents and purposes Tottenham, Enfield and many other areas in now defined greater London, where already part of this spralling metropolis.

        And as for the phrase North London and for that matter South London, these are undefined areas, concepts in the minds of Londoners only (just like east and west London).

        So there can be little doubt that Tottenham are the original North London club.

  46. As for your election to the first Division via the backdoor. Look up all the reasons behind how this election came about. Also look how the Arsenal chairman.Norris,applied pressure onto the FA, and Liverpool and Man.utd in particular, to get his way. Liverpool and Man. Utd had been caught out in a rigged match. They should both have been relegated but were only fined. The person running the FL happened to be high up at Liverpool as well.Chelsea were supposed to be in the vote as well but were excused because that rigged game had meant them finishing bottom two. Norris threatened legal action ifhe was not allowed a say and the FL bottled it and gave in.The rumopurs of brown paper bags being handed out cannot be proven. Norris was later banned from football for life for having his hand in the kitty. The fact it was also well known he bribed players to sign for Arsenal was also proved by a newspaper who Norris sued and lost. Where do you think the ‘same old Arsenal, always cheating’ comes from?And that was countrywide.. not just in London.Mr Norris done well for your club, altough through many dubious methods but.. also made a mockery of the family traditions your club like to portray.

  47. No matter what, Arsenal fans will always be nobs, its like they have to prove something , a bit like little man syndrome, yes they have won more than Spurs, yes technically they are bigger than Spurs , but the thing is whatever happens when it comes to football fans, an Arsenal fan will never shake off the fact they are dicks, cant explain it but you know its true, do you think someone stole their toys when they were little , i’m not sure, its one of lives unanswered questions , Why are Arsenal fans cocks ? Discuss

  48. My family have been in Tottenham for 60 years+ It has always had the postcode of London N17. All of the north bank of the Thames was and some still is Middlesex, the Middlesex Guildhall is in Parliament Square and during the boat race it is referred to the Middlesex bank.
    If you look to the history of arsenal you will find that your nomad/franchise club wanted to settle in SW London with Fulham. You were not allowed to and so bribed your way to where you are now.
    You are not now nor have you ever been a true North London club. So I think you should stick you angry fist in your mistaken mouth before you make another stupid comment of half truths and inaccuracies.

    • Ah the old ‘postcode’ claim. Brilliant. Not the first to try it and probably won’t be the last.

      May I suggest that next time you actually read the post before commenting? I find it helps.

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