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Middlesbrough - December 9

INFORMATION FOR TOWN FANS

We travel to Middlesbrough on Saturday 9th December in the Sky Bet Championship.  The following guide has been produced for Town fans making the trip to the Riverside Stadium.

This is based on Middlesbrough’svisiting supporters guide plus additional information specific to this game. 

For any further information, please contact Elizabeth Edwards, Supporter Liaison Officer on slo@itfc.co.uk or (+44) (0) 7968 876504. 

Middlesbrough visiting supporters guide

The address for Middlesbrough Football Club is Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough, TS3 6RS.

Middlesbrough has produced a visiting supporters guide which can be found via the following link:

www.mfc.co.uk/sites/default/files/document/2017-06/1718%20MFC%20Visiting%20Guide_0.pdf

This contains useful information and is worth reading.  Information for away disabled and ambulant disabled fans is included in this document. 

We have picked out the key information for Town fans below, and added other material based on our experience of going to the Riverside Stadium and information that is specific to our fans

Specific information for Town fans:

Ticket sales

Tickets for the game are on sale at a cost of £30 with concessions for 65+ and U18s.  Usual priority applies for buying tickets.  Tickets can be purchased on www.itfcdirect.com under tickets/away matches.

Travelling to Middlesbrough

Supporters Coach

For those travelling from Ipswich the official coaches are leaving Portman Road at 07:30 at a cost of £37 for adults (with concession prices for U23s, U19s and 65+ Seniors), and are estimated to arrive back at Portman Road at 23:30.  Coach travel is now on sale, subject to the usual priorities, and can be booked onwww.itfcdirect.com.  

Note that all official coaches are non-smoking and the consumption of alcohol on board is strictly forbidden.   ITFC recommend that all supporters under 16 are accompanied by an adult.

Pick-ups at Stowmarket, Bury St Edmunds and Newmarket can be arranged for this game.  If you want to organise a pick-up at any of these locations, please call the Ticket Enquiries Team on 03330 050503.  Your details will then be passed onto the coach company, Galloway Travel Group. 

Car

The Sat Nav postcode for the stadium is TS3 6RS.  Note that there are road closures around the stadium before and after the game so you may want to use the postcode for the car park you are using (see car parking below).

From Ipswich, the obvious driving route is via the A14 / A1 / A19.   Leave the A1 (M) at junction 49 (signposted Teesside) and join the A168, which after approximately 11 miles becomes the A19.  In around 19 miles take the A66 eastbound towards Middlesbrough town centre.  Stay on the A66 past the town centre (which will be on your right) and follow signs to the stadium which will be on your left.  The stadium is about a 20-25 minute walk from the town centre, so if you are early, you may decide to park up in town for the shops, cafes and bars. 

www.google.co.uk/maps  suggests a journey time of around 4 hours, but you should allow at least another hour for traffic.  Watch out for average speed cameras, on a long stretch covering around 25 miles from the start of the Cambridge ring road to Huntingdon and on the A1 between Peterborough and Grantham.  Also note that there are long-term roadworks and speed restrictions on the A14 between Cambridge and Huntingdon, as the entire section is being rebuilt.  This is causing even worse delays than you would normally expect on that stretch 

Parking

Matchday parking at the stadium is available to permit holders only.  Subject to availability permits are available to away fans by calling the Middlesbrough ticket office on 0844 4991234.  These cost £6 per car.

If you do not have a permit, Middlesbrough advise that you use town centre car parks.  Enforcement actions will be taken if cars are illegally or unsafely parked in areas around the stadium.  There are plenty of car parks with a total of 3,558 long stay spaces.  Being so close to Christmas, though, there may be queues for the car parks closest to the shopping centre.  Full details including the address (and Sat Nav postcode) and prices can be found via the following link:

http://visitmiddlesbrough.com/visitor-info/football

The stadium is about a mile from the town centre.   We have previously parked in the Zetland car park which is on the left as you drive along the A66 (town centre will be on the right).

The visit Middlesbrough website indicates that the following roads close to the stadium are restricted and cannot be used for parking at any time:

Cargo Fleet Road
Dockside Road
Heath Road
Marsh Road (section near the Navigation public house)
Moor Road
Shepherdson Way
The Halyard
The Leeway
Windward Way

Restrictions are also in place on parts of the A66 and A172.

They also say “Please be aware that the empty supermarket building, near to KFC and Costa Coffee off Shepherdson Way, is private property, and the owner has determined that it will not make the car park available for use on match days. Please don't try to park in this area.”

www.footballgroundguide.com provides an alternative option for car parking – they suggest that if you follow the route marked away coaches from the A66 you will pass a number of private car parks along the river.  It can however take a long time (45 minutes is quoted) before you can exit after the game.

This website also suggests some street parking – when you reach the turn off the A66 for the stadium, then instead of turning left towards the stadium, turn right to go back across the A66.  It is then about a 15-20 minute walk to the away turnstiles.  As mentioned above do be aware of any restrictions that may apply.

Disabled Supporters Parking

There are five spaces available for visiting disabled supporters.   These can be booked by telephone on 0844 4991234 (option 2- calls to this number will cost seven pence per-minute plus your provider's access charge).   Alternatively contact the ITFC ticket office on 03330 050503 or mainticketoffice@itfc.co.uk who will be able to help.

Train

There are no planned engineering works on the 9th December.

Middlesbrough Station is located on Albert Road which is a 15 minute walk from the Riverside.

From Ipswich there are two options.

You can travel cross-country to Middlesbrough but will need to change at Peterborough and Darlington.  www.greateranglia.co.uk indicates a train from Ipswich at 08:00 arriving at 12:58.  If you want to aim a bit earlier, the 0600 from Ipswich arrives at 10:58.  On the return journey the 18:55 from Middlesbrough is scheduled to get you to Ipswich at 23:22 with changes in Darlington and Peterborough.

The second option is to travel via London.  From Liverpool Street you need to cross London to Kings Cross on the Metropolitan, Circle or Hammersmith & City line.  www.greateranglia.co.uk indicates a change at Darlington on the outward journey.  This is based on trains connecting from Ipswich.   There may be other options available with changes at York, for example.   The journey time is around 4 hours 50 minutes.  For the return journey, www.greateranglia.co.uk is showing a train out of Middlesbrough at 17:26 with a change in York – this connects with the 21:30 from Liverpool Street arriving in Ipswich at 22:43.  The next train at 17:55 involves a change at Eaglescliffe and should get you to Liverpool Street in time for the 22:00. 

Direct services also operate from Middlesbrough to Leeds so it may be worthwhile checking this route as well.

Getting to the ground from the station

The Riverside is about 15 minutes from the railway station if you are walking. 

As you come out of the main station entrance, turn left onto Zetland Road.  Take a left onto Albert Street and go under the railway bridge.  Turn immediately right into Bridge Street East passing the Bridge pub (note this is not away friendly). Take the next right into Windward Way.  Stay on Windward Way, eventually passing the Hudson Quay development on the left, and continue on under the bridge to the Riverside Stadium.  You will see the Riverside Stadium along most of the route.

If you come out of the rear entrance to the station, turn right onto Bridge Street East.  Go past the Bridge pub as per the instructions above.

There is an alternative route which takes about the same time.  Instead of turning right into Windward Way you continue straight along Dock Street.  At the end of Dock Street turn right into Scott’s Road.  Continue along Scott’s Road and you will see the stadium in front of you. 

Pubs

www.footballgroundguide.com suggests that the main pub for away fans is Doctor Browns, 135 Corporation Road, TS1 2RR which is a ten minute walk from the ground.  The pub serves real ale and has SKY TV. 

There are a lot of pubs in the town centre but we have been advised that many are home only, particularly around the station.  From experience, smaller groups of Town fans, especially if not in colours or wanting to loudly proclaim their love of all things ITFC, are generally welcome in many town centre pubs.  As ever, a bit of common sense goes a long way. 

Steve Rock, Chair, Middlesbrough Supporters Club recommends the Longlands Club, Marton Road, TS4 2HF which is a 15 minute walk to the town centre and 32 minute walk to the ground.  It is adjacent to the Longlands Hotel which is a 23 bedroomed hotel.   Sirkars International Cuisine, next to the Hotel offers halal food 

At the ground

ATM’s

There are no ATMs around the stadium, but the official store offers ‘Cash Back’ on a matchday.

Tickets on the day?

Fans will be advised whether tickets are available for purchase on the day of the game about one or two days prior to the game.  This information will be published on the club website (www.itfc.co.uk), twitter (@Official_ITFC) and facebook (www.facebook.com/officialitfc) as soon as the information is available.

If available on matchday, tickets will be on sale at the Visitors Ticket Office located in the South East Corner which is adjacent to the visitors’ turnstiles.  Sales are cash only and there is no price increase on the day of the game.

Duplicate tickets will not be issued without authorisation from ITFC.  Duplicate tickets will be available from the Visitors’ Ticket Office.   For any further information on ticketing queries you can call the Middlesbrough Football Club Ticket Office on 01642 757682 (Tickets cannot be booked via this number, queries only).

Away end

The away supporter section is located in the East stand of the Riverside Stadium and can be accessed through turnstiles 53-61.   The turnstiles open 90 minutes prior to kick off.

Disabled Supporters

There are wheelchair spaces on a raised deck within the visitors section.  If needed, additional spaces are provided pitchside.  To book tickets contact Warner Duff on 01473 400556. 

Visually impaired supporters are able to sit alongside their personal assistants in any part of the away end, providing the seating is suitable for their specific requirements.

There are accessible toilets in the stand – you will need a RADAR key to access them.  

Epilepsy warning

Middlesbrough warn that flashing lights operate in the stadium on matchdays.  This is usually shortly before and after kick off.  If you experience epileptic seizures when viewing flashing lights, this light show may affect you.    They suggest that fans seek assistance from the nearest steward if you feel unwell.

Security

As at all grounds expect to be searched prior to entering the stadium.  Any supporters found with prohibited items in their possession may be arrested. Copies of the Ground Regulations are displayed at the turnstiles and can be found on line at www.mfc.co.uk.

Programmes

The matchday programme #UTB is available to purchase at the ground and is priced at £3.  Programme sellers are outside and inside the stadium.  They are also available in the MFC Official Store, in the North West corner of the stadium.

Food and Drink facilities

There are 5 concessions in the away end offering hot and cold drinks including alcohol.  There is an extensive range of food including burgers, pies, pizzas and a local delicacy called a parmo – a breaded chicken escallop topped with béchamel sauce and a generous portion of cheese.

The visiting supporters guide indicates that alongside the food kiosks and bars there is a super-efficient standalone ‘Bottom’s up’ Beer unit for those fans only wanting a fast-poured pint of Fosters.  This is a new option for most of us so, if you try it, please let us know what you think of it.

Payment options include Credit & Debit cards (excluding AMEX) including contactless payment at the majority of the kiosks  

During the match

In their visiting supporters guide, Middlesbrough ask that all supporters remain seated throughout the match and do not block the aisles.  

They state that “Any supporter whom attempts to disrupt play, at any time, will be ejected from the stadium and may be arrested. This also applies to supporters identified to be throwing items on to the field of play or into the home supporter areas. Any visiting supporters identified within the home section will be ejected from the stadium.”

Middlesbrough’s guide also states that “Discriminatory behaviour, which includes shouting, chanting or actions such as racist, sectarian, homophobic, sexist or anti-disability behaviour is unacceptable. If you witness incidents like these please contact the nearest steward and report your concerns. This will help us act on any information given as quickly as possible.”

Smoking

Smoking and the use of electronic cigarettes (and/or similar products) is not allowed at the Riverside Stadium.

However, the club have introduced a smoking area for visiting supporters.    This area is accessible from 5 minutes prior to the half time whistle to 5 minutes after the second half commences. There is a total time of 25 minutes for visiting supporters to take advantage of the smoking zone.    Alcohol must not be taken outside and supporters must stay within the barriers.  Vouchers will be issued as you step outside the stadium doors and these must be handed back to return into the concourse. 

Lost Property

Any property found within the stadium will be recorded at main reception. If any supporters find any lost property this should be handed in to the nearest steward. Supporters can contact main reception 01642 757682.

Staying in the area

As mentioned above, Steve Rock, Chair, Middlesbrough Supporters Club recommends the Longlands Hotel, Marton Road, TS4 2HF.   He also mentions The Baltimore Hotel, 250 Marton Road, Middlesbrough, Cleveland, TS4 2EZ – quote “apply 15” for a 15% discount – and The Blue Bell Hotel, Acklam Road, Acklam, Middlesbrough, TS5 7HL, a 60 room hotel close to the centre of Middlesbrough.