As Birmingham developed, the wealthy began to look for space outside the crowded inner city. Small Heath, a green site close to and within a fast developing city, began to be developed from 1834 when large houses first appeared east of the Small Heath between Green Lane and Grange Road.
The development of properties in the area was made easier and cheaper through the extraction of the local clay, which was then locally turned into bricks.
Members of Holy Trinity Cricket Club formed the Small Heath Alliance Football Club in 1875 as a way of keeping fit over the winter. They established Muntz Street stadium in 1877, with a capacity for 10,000 spectators. Also serving as the headquarters of the Small Heath Athletic Club, the initial capacity was raised by the addition of a wooden stand and the terracing raised to expand the capacity to around 30,000. In 1895, the football club bought the lease to the ground. After Birmingham received its city charter in 1889, the club was renamed Birmingham City Football Club. The club built a new stadium nearer the city centre, St Andrew's, where they moved in 1907.