THE RECKLESS GUIDE TO
Npower League 2
Saturday September 29th
Kick off 3pm
StadiumHighbury Stadium, Park Avenue, Fleetwood, Lancashire FY7 6TX
Club ColoursRed and White
Official Club Website www.fleetwoodtownfc.com
Scot, Michael “Micky” Mellon is currently in charge at Highbury Stadium. Micky was a tough tacking midfielder who played in over 500 career games for Tranmere Rovers, Blackpool, Burnley and West Brom amongst others. He started his managerial career at Lancaster City before a spell as youth coach back at Burnley. He was appointed manager at Fleetwood in September 2008.
Brief Directions by Road
A bit of trek this one so an early start is needed. Leave the M6 at Junction 32 and take the M55 towards Blackpool. Then leave the M55 at Junction 3 and take the A585 towards Fleetwood. On the outskirts of Fleetwood you will come to a roundabout with Blackpool and Fylde college on your left. Continue straight on towards Fleetwood with the Broadwater Caravan park to your right, taking the first left into Copse Road. After about a mile pass Fleetwood Fire station on your left before turning left into to Radcliffe Road (you will effectively be going back on yourself at this point). Take the next right into Stanley Road and the stadium is at the bottom of this road on your left.
There is no parking facilities for away supporters at the stadium itself but street parking is plentiful and unrestricted.
Directions by Train and Aeroplane
The nearest station to the ground in Blackpool North which is nearly 8 miles away! Options open to you are: Buses 14 and 1 which leave Blackpool town centre every 10 minutes. The fare is only £2.00 and journey time about half and hour. A Tram will take about 40 minutes for £2.50. The made for sharing option – the Mini Cab – will set you back about £20.00 but will give you an extra 15 minutes for another beer at the ground or your chosen establishment!The nearest airport to the ground is Blackpool International Airport.
Barnet Football Club are running the Official Coach Travel for this season. The coach will leave the Pavilion at 07.45 and the ticket price is just £25.00. The Pavilion will be open from 06.15 for pre journey refreshments. Discounts on travel are available for season ticket holders, club members and Supporters Trust members. Bookings for coach travel for all 2011/12 season away games can be purchased online or by calling 0208 6325.
Eating and Drinking Locally
Jim’s Sports Bar at the ground behind the Memorial Stand admits away fans but another options include Poulton Road, about 10 minutes walk away, where two pubs are highly recommended – the Queens Hotel andStrawberry Gardens.The Wetherspoon outlet i.e. The Thomas Drummond on London Street, also has good reports especially for the quality and service of the food.
The Highbury Chippy which overlooks the ground in Highbury Avenue has its good points, but the best chippy for miles according to my spies is The Pisces 92 Poulton Road, especially if you fancy a proper “sit down job”. Large Haddock with mushy peas, bread and butter and a pot of tea for under £6.00? Very civilised indeed. Be prepared to queue though we are taking Saturday lunchtime, surely the best recommendation you can get. Oh by the way ask for “Charlie Cummins” the owner and mention you are visiting fan, he will look after you!
The club have risen 5 leagues in 7 seasons and the ground has been virtually rebuilt in that time. The quietly impressive main Parkside Stand, opened in March 2011, has room for around 2,000 and includes hospitality area, executive boxes and offices all capped by a very smart semi circular roof.
Opposite you will find the Highbury Stand, which is an small all-seated area running for half the length of the pitch. The picture is complete with two end terraces the home supporters using the Memorial Stand and visitors usually the Percy Ronson Terrace.
Bees fans will be allocated the Percy Ronson Terrace or seats in the Parkside Stand depending on numbers.
Adults £15.00, Over 65’s £10.00, Under 16’s £7.00, Under 5’s Freeif accompanied by an adult.
Our Last Meeting & Memories
I can say with complete confidence that this will be our first ever meeting with Fleetwood Town but as always I have a related story. On a sunny Saturday in September 1993 Barnet played Blackpool (we lost 3-1 but Nicky Evans scored) and myself and two other chums (who will remain anonymous) drove into Fleetwood to find the Savoy Guest House where we had booked for the weekend. We had stayed in Blackpool the previous season but decided against that what with all its noise and hullabaloo! The receptionist apologised but there was no reservation under my name. After a spell of deliberation we realised we had booked at the Savoy Hotel in Lytham St Annes. It was in those distant days of postal reservations before on line bookings and even mobile phones were as rare as a complimentary ticket at Southbury Road!
Overnight Stay Factor:
Still light at 7.30pm, picturesque seaside town, new ground for Barnet fans,a sandy beach, Blackpool down the road, funfairs, hot doughnut stalls, rock shops, fortune tellers, a pier, donkey rides, candy floss, toffee apples, “Kiss me quick, squeeze me slowly” hats and plenty of night life. I am sorry I got carried away there didn’t I? The weather forecast for the day is bright and sunny but cold. However you will always feel cold in Fleetwood because it always is! I will award 8/10 because I can. Make the effort to make it everybody, come along even for the day, and join in an amber and black boisterous beachcombing Barnet beano to the seaside.
Watch out for the published photographs of this game as it is likely they will all be “snide” as infamous Loch Ness Monster hoaxer Frank Searle (no relation) lived here and did some part time work on a Saturday afternoon at Highbury. Pretty and bubbly Emmerdale actress Kelsey-Beth Crossley was born here as was operatic tenor Alfie Boe. The aforementioned Strawberry Garden Pub is owned by comedian Syd Little, a serious photo opportunity is on tap for our resident star-spotter Mr John Hunt from Block C methinks.