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There is evidence of matches at the United Services Ground as far back as 1852, but Hampshire did not play here until 1882 when when Sussex beat the home county by an innings. That was not first-class, but soon after Hampshire were admitted to the Championship, and from 1895 through to 2000 they played at the venue regularly.
The ground was surrounded by unexceptional housing interspersed with trees, and one end of was dominated by the officers club. There was also a small covered stand, built for spectators of the rugby side which shared the ground but also used for the cricket. The nearby railway line was often another intrusive aspect. Right through to the 1970s there were always a smattering of uniformed spectators, a reminder of the club's roots.
The end of the ground as a first-class venue came about after poor pitch reports and the construction of the new county headquarters at West End.