Over 20 years of writing about my club in Barnet matchday programmes, which sold to about 500 souls on a good day, now with this Blog Site everyone can read my ramblings, memories, interviews, experiences, features, guides to away grounds and pure love of everything Barnet Football Club. Enjoy and digest and tell your friends.
Reckless - Potters Bar March 2014.
Oh Yes, thank you to"Al" without whom.......that is all
Burr has been in charge at The Exactra since January 2014. Scot
Steve was a striker and spent a large part of his career at
Macclesfield Town before gaining managerial experience at Nuneaton,
Northwich, Stalybridge and Kidderminster. Since 2005 Steve as been
Assistant to Paul Fairclough in the England C set up.
Directions by Road:
round trip of approx. 400 miles awaits and there are various ways of
getting to Chester. Via the A41 is the most scenic, but the following
route is the most direct and easy to follow courtesy of Chester FC.
M6 to junction 18 and onto the A54 signposted Middlewich and
Northwich. Stay on the A54 through Middlewich and through the town of
Winsford. After about 8 miles stay on the A54 where it is joined by
the A556. Shortly afterwards join the A51 towards Chester. When you
reach the junction with the A55 turn left and continue on this ring
road (dual carriageway) until you reach its junction with the A483
signposted Chester. Turn onto the A483 (called the Wrexham Road at
this point) and pass over three roundabouts. The road now becomes
Grosvenor Road and then over the River Dee. At the next roundabout
turn left into Nicholas Street (A5286). Left turn at the traffic
lights into New Craine Street passing the Racecourse then head
through the Roman walls into Sealand Road (A458). After about a mile
look out for Stendall Road on your left where this road becomes
Bumpers Lane – follow your nose the ground awaits. The ground is
well signposted from whichever direction you approach.
is ample car parking for around 800 cars at the ground for a £4.00
charge. ‘Reckless wonder tip’ when leaving the park keep to the
left exit as this moves considerably faster than the right channel.
Feedback required here please as it may involve me buying a pint for
the originator of the information.
Virgin or North Western train form London Euston via Crewe takes
around 3 hours. Chester station is about a mile and a half from the
Stadium. Taxi to the ground will cost around £6.00 one way, made for
sharing. Bus travel from the station is the easiest way to get to
the ground as the No.28 runs along Sealand Road, stops a few hundred
yards from the ground and is very frequent. Another option is
Hawarden Airport, which is only three miles from Chester City centre.
It will accept executive jets by appointment only.
and Drinking Locally
are no pubs within easy access of the stadium. My spies tell me that
Telford’s Warehouse in Canal Street, about a mile away, is good and
serves decent food too with a nice view. Having a beer in the city
centre is easy and three pubs have been recommended by a very helpful
correspondent from Chester who wishes to remain anonymous – The
Mill Hotel, which has a very nice real ale bar, Old Harker’s Arms
(these two are very close to each other along the canal plus the Bear
& Billet which is inside the city walls. A decent eat will be
very difficult to find close to the ground apart from the usual
football ground fare. Tesco’s have a large outlet at the end of
Bumpers Lane and boasts an inexpensive restaurant I am led to believe
but I can’t say that I have ever sampled Cuisine a la Tesco before!
the social club has a “depending on numbers” policy for away fans
as the club is on the small side. I managed to get in last time as a
guest of a member for £1.00 – so put on your smiley faces and
chat up a local!
The stadium, originally
known as the Deva Stadium, was constructed in 1992 and was the first
new football ground to encompass all the safety regulations as set
out in the Justice Taylor report commissioned after the disasters at
Bradford and Hillsborough in the 1980's. The capacity is currently a
shade over 5,300 with 4,200 seats.
Main Exacta Stand to the east seats around 2,200 while its smaller
sister stand the Centurion
sits opposite. I am told this is were we will be housed for the
afternoon. Both end enclosures were originally identical covered
terraces although the south or Swansway
stand has been converted to hold 780 seats. The home Harry McNally
Terrace (the only standing area within the ground) completes the
well known fact about the ground is of course that the pitch is
situated in Wales (Flintshire) while the main gates the offices and
car park are in England (Cheshire).
Under 18's £6, Under 16's £3, Under 5's Free
Meetings and Memories
last visit was in January 2014 when a Jake Hyde goal was not enough
in a 2-1 defeat in front of 2,179. However we have pitted our wits
against Chester - in whichever costume they have been wearing -
numerous times over the years
first game of season 1999/2000 - and a comfortable 2-0 win was spoilt
somewhat by the breakdown of the supporter’s coach. The driver
disappeared to a local (?) coach depot for some spare parts for the
automatic door at around 2.00pm and stranded 50 or so souls in the
bleak car park until around 6.00pm.
Yuletide celebrations came early
in 1995 with another brilliant 2-0 victory at Chester a couple of
days before Christmas - goals from Sean Devine and Lee Hodges -, with
Micky ‘Let Me Hear You Say Tommo’ Tomlinson outstanding on the
favourite son, apart from comedian Russ Abbott who was born here, is
Ian Rush who cost Liverpool £300,000 when he moved in May 1980.
Another comedy actor and writer Hugh Lloyd, who had an incredible
chin wobble and might be recalled by some of our older supporter’s.
lived here too and was a fervent supporter of the club. So too are
Jonathan Legard and Charlie Lambert who both report football on Radio
Five Live. Chester’s list of famous persons include “Noughtes”
Superstar Michael Owen, the minor TV personality and writer Giles
Brandreath and virtually every actor from the Channel 4 Soap Opera
Brookside. Jamie and Louise Redknapp are often stopped for autographs
while queuing in Subway for a sandwich or picking up a Costa Coffee.
Do you see the distinctive newly built insipid lime green semi
detached houses with the black shutters as you turn into Bumpers
Lane? Well the world-renowned ventriloquist Keith Harris and his
intensely irritating duck Orville owns them and has kept the Chester
fans entertained in the social club on a Saturday night.