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
in charge at The Memorial is Mansfield born Darrell Clarke, who has
held the reins since March 2014. He had previously managed at
Salisbury Town and as an attacking midfielder played for Mansfield
Town and Hartlepool United
DIRECTIONS BY ROAD
M4 until its junction
19. Turn onto the M32 and carry on until its junction 2. Take the
third exit at the roundabout signposted Horfield and Southmead where
you will begin to see signs for the Memorial Stadium. Carry on for
approx. a mile and a half until you reach traffic lights and
crossroads. Turn left here into Filton Avenue where you will find the
ground almost immediately on your left. These directions are courtesy
of Bristol Rovers FC.
Street parking is
available but very difficult unless you arrive early. The club
recommends Muller Road or Gloucester Road, which will leave you with
a 10-minute walk to the ground.
A London Paddington to
Bristol Parkway train will take about 90 minutes. Bristol Parkway is
2 miles from the ground and the 73 and 74 buses run past it. A taxi
will cost around £6.00 so grab a chum or two and share. A train back
to London after the game is very tight for time so please check
supporters Coach will leave the Hive at 14.30 with earlier pick up
points at Potters Bar Station. Barnet (3 separate places), Whetstone
and Edgware starting at 13.30. The price is £28.00 return.
Call the Ticket Office on 0208 381 3800 and select Option 2.
AND DRINKING LOCALLY
Queen Victoria, which is a 5 minute walk from the ground is the best
bet for a pre match beer and a snack. However there are numerous
pubs in the vicinity of the stadium. The Social Club is available to
away fans in small friendly numbers according to my spies.
The Memorial Stadium,
formerly owned by Bristol Rugby Club became Rovers' home in in 1996
after a ten-year ground share with Bath City at Twerton Park.
Previously they played at Eastville Stadium but more of that later.
The capacity is around 12,000 with about 4,000 seats. The West Stand
is a strange looking affair with its prominent executive boxes along
the roof the focal point with a fairly small seated area behind a
paddock of terracing.
Adjacent and to the left is the Family Stand
whose roof was bought and paid for by the Supporters Association.
Opposite sits the tall and narrow cantilevered Dribuild Stand, which
has a slightly larger seating area behind a bank of unsheltered
terracing. If you suffer from vertigo it is not recommended that you
sit in the back rows, as the rake is very steep. Either side of it is
open terracing part of which will be our home for the afternoon along
with some seating in the South Stand- if it is a wet day bring a
brolly or suffer the consequences To the left of the DAS Stand is the
home fan stronghold the Blackthorn End, a low fully covered terrace.
At the other end of the pitch is the aforementioned South Stand,
which is a similar bank of seats to Underhill’s old Montgomery
Stand only larger. It runs for 2/3rds of the touchline from corner
flag to far edge of the 6 yard box.
Under 16's £8. Depending on the category our game is given, i.e. A
or B, these prices may be rounded up by a further £2.00.
MEETINGS AND MEMORIES
Our last visit was in
February 2013 when a Harry Crawford goal was not enough in a 2-1
defeat in front of over 8,000 paying customers!
A rather satisfying
visit to Rovers was in November 2011 when Izale McLeod and Mark Byrne
goals secured a 2-0 in front of over 5,000 spectators.
recall November 1983 two months into his Barnet career and Nicky
Evans was at his most majestic at Rovers old ground Eastville in a
replayed FA Cup 1st round tie. We lost 3-1 but Nicky’s goal and
performance was perfection bearing in mind the pitch condition that
evening. The is also some very grainy film of this game available on
YouTube. The Pirates made an offer for Evans of probably £3,000,000
or even more after the game but he chose to stay at Underhill, truly
the master in the box. The wonderful exhibition from the Barnet
midfield and Gary Phillips in goal in the first contest at Underhill
helped end the game 0-0 and the attendance was given as 2,650. Yeah
OK there wasn’t about 700 Rovers fans on the East Terrace, the West
Bank wasn’t packed to the rafters and the Queens Arms didn’t had
to re-cover their pool table, repair their fruit machine and replace
numerous windows the next day.
A Tuesday afternoon and
evening in Bristol gets a 6/10 just because the City is steeped in
superb 17th and 18th century architecture and Art Deco buildings plus
it has more than its fair share of high quality Indian, Chinese and
East European Restaurants. It is also a students paradise (the town
centre always seems inundated with them) and many pubs offer cheap
early evening drinks and in the shops Pot Noodles are on special
offer every which way you turn. Do supermarkets still sell Vesta
Agogo and Giuliano Grazioli played for both clubs and would have made
a splendid partnership at Underhill. Lord Jeffrey Archer lived
locally and can be seen most mornings picking up his copy of the
Daily Mirror in News ‘n’ Chews. Top 60’s and 70’s British
songwriting team Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway (I’d Like To Teach
the World To Support Barnet was one of their best) came from these
parts as did Rod Hull & his Emu before his fall from the skylight
I mean limelight.