Southampton – Sunday, 18th September 2016 at 14:15
Address: The St Mary’s Stadium, Britannia Road, Southampton, SO14 5FP
Telephone: 0845 688 9448
Web Site: www.saintsfc.co.uk
Up to 3,000 away fans are in the Northam Stand at one end of the stadium; the view of the pitch and facilities are excellent and leg room is good. The concourse has a bookies and TV’s showing the game as it is played. It has a number of eating and drinking outlets with plenty of staff to clear the queues. Pies, burgers and hot dogs are sold. There’s also a ‘Pie & Pint’ outlet just selling beer & pies.
I’ve spent quite a few weekends in Southampton and it’s a pretty good night out. It has loads of traditional pubs, large city centre bars and clubs. There are many chain restaurants and independent ones from many different ethnic backgrounds means that pretty much any palate will be satisfied.
Hotels in the city centre include 2 Ibis hotels, a Novotel, Jury’s Premier Inn, Holiday Inn, Mercure and many more chain and independent hotels and bed and breakfasts.
The Club offer tours of the stadium. Its £15.00 for adults, £7.50 for concessions and family tickets are £30. If you know Saints season ticket holders or club members, they get half price tickets. Call 0845 688 9370 to book.
The Southampton Boat Show is on 16-25 September at Mayflower Park/Town Quay, (SO15 1AG). Prices are on the day £22, free entry for children, and in advance £15, again free for children. Free child entry is 2 per paying adult.
Each day of the weekend is Beatrix Potter: Play and Childhood at Mottisfont Abbey (SO51 0LP). There are 30 original drawings and watercolours, with a small selection of rare vintage Beatrix Potter dolls and figurines. Entry is Adult £13.60, child entry is £6.80, for a family £34. This is entry to the Abbey and all exhibitions.
The Friday before at the game at 20:00 ELO Again are at The Brook (SO17 3SD), entry is £13 or £15 at the door.
Leisure World on West Quay Road (SO15 1RE) is a multi-purpose entertainment centre with a multi screen cinema, a casino, Oceana nightclub, bars and restaurants.
For a few nights before and after the game, The Mayflower Theatre (SO15 1AP) has Mamma Mia. Tickets are £26-£60
The day of the game at 10:30 and 11:30 is the Clock Tower Tours at SeaCity Museum (SO14 7FY). Tickets are £5.50 and gives you fantastic views of Southampton. You must be over 12 years old, physically fit, and should wear sensible shoes as there are over 200 steps to climb.
You can get a day-trip as foot passengers to the Isle of Wight on the ferry from £13.60 return, £6.80 for kids, with under 5’s travel for free. Departures are from Lymington, see www.wightlink.co.uk/iow/ for fares and timetables.
The city has theatres, galleries and museums, plus lots of music and comedy venues. The parks make Southampton the greenest city in Southern England and Southampton Common has over 300 acres of flora and fauna to enjoy.
Southampton’s Old Town is just south of the city centre. Famous residents and visitors including William The Conqueror, Henry V, William Shakespeare, the Pilgrim Fathers, Isaac Watts and Jane Austen, among many others.
Originally built as the main gateway to the medieval city, the 800 year old Bargate stands as a prestigious entrance to the Old Town where you’ll find the third longest stretch of unbroken medieval defensive walling in England. Eleven pairs of plaques have been laid from the Bargate down to the waterside, marking key events in the city’s history. The plaques mark key moments, from the early Roman settlement, to the opening of the National Oceanography Centre.
Pubs and Grub
Pointers from my mate Andy who lives in Southampton – Yates on Above Bar Street (SO14 7FH) is on the way from central station. For better ale pubs, park in St Denys, try a few pubs and walk along the boardwalk by the river to the stadium. The city centre has plenty of pubs to choose from, ‘The Prince of Wales’ (SO14 0QF) and ‘The Rockstone’ (SO14 0JL) are two.
Sadler’s Brewhouse & Barbecue (SO15 2AJ) has dozens of beers from its brewery in the West Midlands, and serves American BBQ food and an easy 20 minute walk to the ground. Ocean Village (SO14 3TJ) also has a lot of friendly drinking holes.
There’s a good mix of home and away fans in the Wetherspoons ‘The Standing Order’ (SO14 2DF) in the city centre, but sometimes only allow home fans in. The stadium is a good 20 minute walk away.
A small pub, the ‘Chapel Arms’ (SO14 5GB), is a 5 minute walk from the stadium. Although mainly a ‘home’ pub you’ll be OK if you arrive early or have colours covered. To find it, go to the corner of the stadium that has the Saints Superstore on it and walk towards the city centre along the road that runs beside the river, the pub on your right.
‘The Joshua Tree’ (SO14 5QN) is a 5-10 minute walk from the ground. Good for both home and away fans and is one of the closest to the away coaches in Britannia Road on the local industrial estate.
A pub that’s reopened is ‘The King Alfred’ (SO14 0PD). Its a few minutes walk from the stadium, go towards the railway line to the right of the away end, and go over the railway bridge, it’s a minute’s walk away to your left. It has shows Sky Sports and has a BBQ on matchdays.
Parking & Trains
There’s basically no parking at the stadium for away fans and parking restrictions close by. Most fans head for the city centre car parks and walk 15-20 minutes to the stadium. The NCP city centre car park is £5.
After the game, roads around the city centre are grid locked, taking an hour to get away. Alternatively, park around the Marina area (Ocean Village) – £5 for 6 hours and walk 10 minute to the ground. It’s good at the end of the game as you avoid the city centre gridlock by going along the coast on the A3024 onto the M271/M27.
The stadium is 1.5 miles from Southampton station (large car parks there), and takes 30 minutes to walk. There are signs to direct fans to the ground. A shuttle bus goes from Blechynden Terrace bus stop outside the station.
One trains leaves Swansea at 07:58 for the 5 hour journey. Trains coming back are at 16:54, 17:15 & 18:15.
For the Travelling Jacks making the trip – Be Loud, Be Proud and Be Positive!