Hill-Wood who served as the Gunners’ chairman for 31 years, has passed away at the age of 82
Hill-Wood joined the Arsenal board in 1962 before becoming chairman in 1982 – a position he held until June 2013, when illness forced him to step down.
A statement on Arsenal’s website read: “Peter and his family’s influence on the club cannot be understated, but at this most difficult time for his family and friends, it is Peter the man who we remember with great fondness. Our thoughts are with his wife Sally and his children Sarah, Julian and Charles.”
It is with deep regret that we announce the death of former chairman Peter Hill-Wood, at the age of 82
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) December 28, 2018
Four years into his 31-year spell as chairman, Hill-Wood’s appointment of manager George Graham led to an upturn in the club’s fortunes. Graham’s arrival resulted in two league titles and triumphs in the FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup.
After Bruce Rioch’s brief spell in replacing Graham, Hill-Wood made the decision to hire an unknown in Wenger, who went on to transform Arsenal into a Premier League powerhouse and become their longest-serving manager.
Wenger enjoyed nearly 22 years at the helm, winning three league titles – going unbeaten with his ‘Invincibles’ team in 2003-04 – and seven FA Cups while also leading the Gunners to the Champions League final in 2006, losing 2-1 to Barcelona. Arsenal have also credited Hill-Wood for his influence during the club’s move from Highbury to Emirates Stadium back in 2006, stating that he was ‘instrumental’ in the process.