SeasideEssexXile tells you all you need to know about Oakwell ahead of the Boxing Day trip to Barnsley.
Oakwell – Barnsley
Barnsleh – been in the Premiership, almost made it to an FA Cup final and now appear to be wanting to charge top flight admission prices to us away fans. Perhaps the country wide recession hasn`t reached South Yorkshire…… yet.
t`s a funny place. I`ve been to Oakwell a few times and we`ve never seemed to have it easy. A couple of years ago we out played them for 70minutes then blew it in 2. Last time round the little runt now plying his trade for the Knobbers came off the bench and sealed another Pool defeat.
onday sees the start of a 3 games in 6 days run, after a stumbling last couple of games we`ll need 4-6 points out of these matches to try and keep pace with the top 8.
How to get there
55 M6 to J30 join the M61, on to the M60 sign posted Bury / Leeds then join the M62. Leave the M62 and take the M1 South. Leave the M1 at J37 and take the A628 towards Barnsley. The directions to the ground are signposted from here, however – At the roundabout, take the fourth exit onto West Way (A628). At the next roundabout, take the second exit onto Harborough Hill Road (A61) turn Right on to Pontefract Rd and you should be able to see the ground.
For the Virgin Lovers amongst us Barnsley railway station is a ten minute walk. From the train station, turn left away from the town centre and head towards the bridge that the dual-carriageway runs over. Go under the bridge and turn left up the slip road and then take the first road on the right and head towards the Metro Dome leisure complex at the top of the hill. The ground is now at the bottom of this hill.
For the sat navvers – S71 1ET
he name ‘Oakwell’ generally refers to the main stadium, it also includes several neighbouring venues which form the facilities of the Barnsley F.C. academy – an indoor training pitch, a smaller stadium with seating on the south and west sides for around 2,200 spectators, and several training pitches used by the different Barnsley FC squads.
ntil 2003 the stadium and the vast amount of land that surrounds it was owned by Barnsley Football Club themselves, however after falling into administration in 2002 the council purchased the main Oakwell Stadium to allow the club to pay its creditors and remain participants in The Football League.
pened in 1888, Oakwell was almost fully redeveloped during the 90’s when Barnsley were in the top flight. The West Stand is the only original part of the stadium left. There`s an odd ‘corner` stand. Built in the summer of 1998 and originally known as ‘The Welcome Windows Stand’, this unusual three level structure provides further executive areas and disabled facilities,access to this area was also incorporated into the neighbouring East Stand on several levels, the spectator capacity of the structure is 202.
he ground has a capacity of just over 23000. This includes the 6000+ North Stand behind one goal where we`ll be sat.
Where to Drink
n previous visits we’ve always parked at t’top of t’hill and drunk in the leisure centre. Hassle free whilst it’s a 5 minute downhill stumble into the ground, it took us an hr to travel the 100 or odd yards on to the main road at the end of the game. Recommended pubs for away fans are The Outpost on Sheffield Rd (10mins) or The Holleywell Inn on Oakwell Rd near the old Barnsley Brewery.
If we get the whole of the North Stand then ale will be available inside the ground.
Plod & Stewards
een a pretty hassle free couple of last visits to Oakwell, mind you there was enough of a police presence at the end of our last visit than we`ve seen at Bloomers for all the games so far this season.
Fear Factor rating – 2
As galling as it was, we`d have all settled for a point at St Mary`s last away trip. Last Saturday with a bit of luck we`d be very handily placed, that said 3 decent results in 6 days and we`re right back in the mixer.
ere`s hoping that come 5pm on Monday we`re driving back across the 62 with a smile on our face and we`ve given Barnsley the chop..
Onwards + Upwards