Bolton Wanderers

Macron Stadium

Capacity: 28,723 (all seated)
Address: Burnden Way, Horwich, Bolton, BL6 6JW
Telephone: 01204 673 673
Fax: 0844 871 2931
Ticket Office: 0844 871 2932
Stadium Tours: 01204 673 650
Pitch Size: 105 x 68 metres
Club Nickname: The Trotters
Year Ground Opened: 1997
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Shirt Sponsors: Spin and Win
Kit Manufacturer: Macron
Home Kit: White and Navy Blue
Away Kit: Sky & Light Blue Stripes

External View
External View
West Stand
West Stand
Nat Lofthouse Stand
Nat Lofthouse Stand
North Stand
North Stand
South Stand
South Stand
Macron Stadium Bolton Wanderers FC
Nat Lofthouse Statue
Nat Lofthouse Statue

The stadium built by Birse Construction was opened as the Reebok Stadium in 1997 and renamed the Macron Stadium, in another corporate sponsorship deal in 2014. From the outside the stadium looks simply stunning and can be seen for miles around. I still think the view of it driving down the slip road from the M61 motorway, is one of the greatest sights to be seen in English football, especially when it is lit up at night. It has a great eye catching design and is unlike anything else in the country.

The inside is functional and tidy, but not unsurprisingly lacks the wow factor of the stadium's external appearance. It is totally enclosed and each stand has a conventional rectangular lower tier, with a semi circular upper tier above. Situated between the two tiers is a row of executive boxes. Above the stands there is a gap between the back of the stands and the roof to allow additional light to reach the pitch. The roofs are then topped with some diamond shaped floodlights that sit above a striking supporting tubular steel supporting structure. There is large video screen in one corner, situated between the South and Nat Lofthouse Stands. One unusual feature of the ground is that the teams emerge from separate tunnels on either side of the halfway line. Outside the stadium is a statue of former player and legend Nat Lofthouse.

Away fans are housed in the two tiered South Stand at one end of the ground, where up to 5,000 supporters can be accommodated, although the normal allocation is nearer 3,000. The lower tier is shared with home supporters, but the upper tier is given entirely to away fans. The leg room and facilities within this stand are good and the atmosphere is boosted in the home end by the presence of a drummer. Alex Smith adds; 'away fans should note that the bottom rows of the lower tier are not covered by the roof and therefore you may get wet if it rains'. Whilst Paul Kelly warns; 'the stewards at the stadium can be a bit over zealous, often throwing out fans for little reason. My advice to away fans is do not even think about celebrating a goal by going further forward than the front row. They'll have you even if you're just on the bit of track behind the adverts. Also you may be told to sit down during the game, take heed and do so. Fans have been removed who persistently stand up during the game'.

I was particularly impressed with the stadium and for the first time in this country, I felt I could have easily been sitting in a comparable stadium in the United States. The refreshment facilities are good (albeit queuing times can be long on occasion) and I wish that other clubs would copy the way that supporters in the Reebok are served. There are proper queuing barriers and exit lanes. One person takes the order and deals with the money, whilst another prepares your order at the same time. Simple when you think about it, it is just a pity that other clubs seem to think that supporters enjoy the lottery of being in the scrum that develops around the refreshment kiosk. Food on offer includes a range of Holland's "Big Eat" Pies; Chicken Balti, Peppered Steak, Potato and Meat, Cheese Potato and Onion (all £2.90), Cheeseburgers (£3.50), Chicken Wraps (£3.80) and Hot Dogs (£3.50).

The stadium is certainly one of the best in England, although a capacity of under 30,000 means that it is on the small side compared to other stadia. There is 125 room hotel located behind the away end of the ground, 19 of which have views of the pitch. I just wonder if any of the hotel guests occupying these rooms may at some time put on their own half time show! 

The main pub for away fans is the Beehive, which is about a 10-15 minute walk away from the away turnstiles. It is a good sized pub that also serves food. You can also park your car there (see below). Also there is the Barnstormers pub on Lostock Lane (from the M61, go past the stadium on your left, move into the right hand filter lane and turn right at the traffic lights into Lostock Lane, the pub is down on the right) which does admit away fans. There is also a mixture of street parking and paid parking (at some industrial units) in this area.

Otherwise alcohol is served within the ground, although for some games such as local derbies, the Club opt not to sell any. Alcohol available inside the ground, includes; Worthington's Bitter (£3.40), Carling Lager (£3.50), Magners Cider (£3.70), Guinness (£3.80) Red or White Wine (£4). In another good move then the Club allow your to pre-order and pay for your half time drinks, before the game has kicked off, through the purchase of tokens. Thus making it quicker to get your hands on your interval liquid refreshments. 

There are a number of bars on the nearby Middlebrook Retail Park (the Macron Stadium is on the Middlebrook Retail estate). However most of these have bouncers on the doors that only admit home fans on production of a matchday or season ticket, There are though plenty of eating outlets on the Retail Park; KFC, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Subway and a Bolton Wanderers themed McDonalds as well as several other themed restaurants. 

If you require hotel accommodation in Horwich or Manchester then first try a hotel booking service provided by They offer all types of accommodation to suit all tastes and pockets from; Budget Hotels, Traditional Bed & Breakfast establishments to Five Star Hotels and Serviced Apartments. Plus their booking system is straightforward and easy to use. Yes this site will earn a small commission if you book through them, but it will help towards the running costs of keeping this Guide going. 

Access their Horwich and Manchester Hotels pages.

Of why not stay at the Macron Stadium itself at the excellent Bolton Whites Hotel.

Remember that you can use the above link to book any other hotels that you may need for business or leisure, at home or abroad.

From The South
M6 to Junction 21a, take eastbound M62 leaving at Junction 12. Follow signs for M61 (Bolton/Preston) and leave the M61 motorway at Junction 6. The ground is visible from this junction and is clearly sign posted.

From The North
M6 to Junction 29 and take the M65 towards Blackburn. Leave the M65 at junction two and join the M61 towards Manchester. Leave the M61 at junction six. The ground is visible from this junction and is clearly sign posted.

John Walsh adds; 'Because of traffic congestion on the M60 (formerly M62),  caused by the Trafford Centre, I would recommend that those supporters travelling from the South should take the North directions above. It is about 10 miles further but can save 30 minutes and a lot of frustration!'

Car Parking

There is a car park at the ground, but this costs £6 for cars (£12 for minbuses). Plus on my last visit the cars in the away section of the car park were packed in like sardines, meaning that away fans leaving early (my team had just been stuffed!) couldn't get a quick getaway as there were cars blocking them in. However a lot of the surrounding industrial estate units offer cheaper parking, usually around the £4-£5 mark. Some of these are located on either side of Lostock Lane. From the M61, go past the stadium on your left, move into the right hand filter lane and turn right at the traffic lights into Lostock Lane. If you continue down Lostock Lane and take a left hand turn before to the Bromilow Arms, then I noticed on my last visit that there was some street parking to be had at the bottom of this road. Neil Casson a visiting Tottenham Hotspur fan informs me; 'I've been to Bolton a couple times and parked at a factory unit on Cranfield Road, which is the first right off Lostock Lane. Its the first unit on the right as you enter Cranfield Road costs £3.50 and it's staffed for the duration of the game. Away fans are located in the South Stand, so it's just a short walk back to your car. The official car parks seem to be well snarled up and parking I recommend parking just away from the ground if you want a quick getaway'. 

Gary Lovatt adds 'On the parking front, a handy little idea is to park at the Beehive pub which is on the roundabout (half a mile past the stadium coming from the motorway) where you pay £5 per car but get it all back at the bar. I also recommend the cajun chicken baguette there!' To get to the Beehive leave the M61 at Junction 6 and drive down towards the stadium. Then continue straight on past the stadium and the Beehive pub is situated at the next roundabout, on Chorley New Road. 

Whilst Mark Pickering suggests; 'St Joseph's school on Chorley New Road, offers parking on matchdays at £4 per car. On reaching the roundabout with the Beehive pub, turn left and St Joseph's School is on the left hand side after about 250 yards. There is a path way from the school leading down to the stadium - allowing fairly rapid entrance and exit to and from the ground.'

Davs Dallison informs me; 'For the last few seasons we have parked at the Brinsop Country Inn on the Chorley Road (A6), on the other side of the M61, which is about a 15 minute walk from the stadium. It costs £4 to park there, but the pub has good beer and reasonably priced food, with home and visiting fans mixing together. The big plus point is that you can easily get away after the game back onto the motorway with no problems'.

Post Code for SAT NAV: BL6 6JW

Horwich Parkway railway station serves the stadium, with regular trains from Bolton's main railway station. Horwich Parkway is only a few minutes walk from the stadium.

Find train times, prices and book tickets with trainline. Booking tickets in advance will normally save you money!

Remember if travelling by train then you can normally save on the cost of fares by booking in advance.

Visit the the trainline website to see how much you can save on the price of train tickets.

Click on the trainline logo below:

Bolton operate a category system of ticket pricing (A, B,C & D) whereby the most popular matches will cost more to watch than the least popular ones. Category A prices are shown below with Category B, C & D shown in brackets:

All Stands
Upper Tiers:
Adults £30 (B £26) (C £23) (D £15)
Over 65's/Under 23's £20 (B £18) (C £16) (D £7)
Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9) (D £7)
Under 12's £7 (all categories)

Lower Tiers:
Adults £28 (B £26) (C £23) (D £15)
Over 65's/Under 23's £23 (B £20) (C £18) (D £7)
Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9) (D £7)
Under 12's £7 (all categories)

Family Area (North Stand Upper Tier): 
1 Adult + 1 Under 18 £33 (B £30) (C £28) (D £20)
2 Adults + 2 Under 18's £66 (B £60) (C £56) (D £40)

Official Programme: £3
White Love Fanzine £1
Tripes & Trotters Fanzine £1

Bolton Wanderers Fixture List (takes you to the BBC Sports Website).

Manchester United, Manchester City, Bury, Blackburn, Wigan, Preston and from a little further a field; Tranmere Rovers.

Record Attendance

At The Macron Stadium: 28,353 v Leicester City Premier League, December 28th 2003.

At Burnden Park: 69,912 v Manchester City  FA Cup 5th Round, February 18th, 1933.

Average Attendance
2015-2016: 15,056 (Championship League)
2014-2015: 15,413 (Championship League)
2013-2014: 16,141 (Championship League)

 For details of disabled facilities and club contact at the ground please visit the relevant page on the 
Level Playing Field website.

The Old Burnden Park GroundThe Club were formed as Christ Church FC and played at various grounds, before moving to Pike's Lane in 1881.

The Club which had changed its name to Bolton Wanderers, played at Pike's Lane for 14 years before moving to the Burnden Park site in 1895.

Visit our Lost Grounds and Stands section to see photos, videos and read more information about Burnden Park.

If anything is incorrect or you have something to add, please e-mail at: and I'll update the guide.

Bolton Wanderers v Grimsby Town
FA Cup First Round
Saturday 5th November 2016, 3pm
Kevin Dixon (Grimsby Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Macron Stadium?

The Macron Stadium was another new ground for me to tick off the list, and another big day out for the Black and White Army.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

As I was staying in Manchester for the weekend, it was a simple half hour journey up the M61. Having read some of the previous reviews, I decided to park down Lostock Lane, and ended up in Hall Lane, just past the Barnstormers pub.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I nipped into the neighbouring Tesco next to the ground, and grabbed a sandwich and a drink, before making my way into the stadium. Home fans on the way were all friendly.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Macron Stadium?

After six seasons in the Conference League, it was a pleasure to visit a new modern ground. I have driven past on the M61 several times, and thought how good the Macron Stadium looked, and I wasn't disappointed. We were housed in the lower tier of the away end, there was sufficient leg room, and even though I was on the second row, it was still a reasonable view. The two sides of the ground are similar, both having a line of executive boxes between the lower and upper tiers, and the home end is a mirror image of the away end. The biggest disappointment was the lack of home fans. We had over 1,900, but the total crowd was a mere 6,600. The fact that the tickets were only £10/£12 made it even more surprising.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.

The first half was largely controlled by Bolton, although we didn't play badly. Our former loanee, Liam Trotter scored with a powerful header from a corner, and we went in at half time 1-0 down. The second half was a totally different matter, during which we played some of our best football of the season. However due to a fine performance from the Bolton keeper, we were unable to grab an equaliser. The Town fans were in good voice as ever, but there was very little noise from the home fans, even when they scored. The stewards were fine, doing their job with the minimum of fuss. I didn't try the food, but the toilets were very spacious and clean.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

After a ten minute walk back to the car, I joined the queue to get back onto the M61, which took a little longer than I anticipated. In view of the low attendance, I would imagine that it would be chaos getting away when there is a big crowd.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Despite the defeat, it was a good day out, and once again the Town fans were a great credit to the club. A number of Bolton supporters have praised us on the great atmosphere created by our fans. I would like to visit again, hopefully when there is a decent sized crowd.

Bolton Wanderers v Oxford United
Football League One
Saturday 1st October 2016, 3pm
Rob Pickett (Oxford United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Macron Stadium?

Once again, as a northern exile living in Sheffield, this was a new ground and an easy away stadium to visit. Have heard good things about the Macron, I was well up for the trip.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The Macron Stadium has to be one of the best located grounds in the country. Easy to find, right by the motorway and with a nearby train station to boot. I parked at The Barnstormers Pub, which is a 10/15 minute walk to the ground.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I had a couple of pints of great real ale at the Barnstormers with a filled roll. This is a great pub accepting away and home fans in a cordial atmosphere. One of the barmaids called me sweetheart (the first time in many years for me!!), so I was well happy with that part of the day.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Macron Stadium?

Very impressed. The Macron is well designed ground from outside and inside. Great views from away end and good atmosphere. Probably one of the best stadiums I've been to in sometime.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.

Facilities were standard fayre, but toilets were expansive. The game was a tight affair in the first half. Bolton had some serious height in their team and counter-attacked with pace. The second half was the best 45 minutes from Oxford this season and we ran out deserved 2-0 winners on the day.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Straightforward, not too long to get back to the motorway and on the way. A real bonus.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

For Oxford fans and excellent day out. I would recommend a visit for other away fans to the Macron Stadium and to The Barnstormers pub. I'll go the next time we are away to Bolton.

Bolton Wanderers v Bradford City
Football League One
Saturday 24th September 2016, 3pm
Harry (Bradford City fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Macron Stadium?

I had never been to Bolton before. Plus with our former Manager Phil Parkinson moving over to take charge at Bolton, at the begriming of this season, there was extra interest in this match.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We traveled by train. On arriving at Bolton we got the train/rail replacement service to Horwich Parkway (as engineering works were taking place on the line). Horwich Parkway Station is literally a five minute walk away from the away turnstiles.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

We arrived at 1:30pm so we decided to walk over to the Retail Park to find somewhere to eat. The walk over to the Retail Park too longer then expected. We got into the stadium at around 2:15pm.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Macron Stadium?

Looks a bit like the John Smiths stadium in Huddersfield but decent view from the top tier after walking up about eight flights of stairs.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

0-0 was probably a fair result. Bolton only really had 1 real chance which was blocked but Bradford didn't do anything of any real note for the majority of the game. Stewards were quiet all match and didn't ask anyone to sit down. Bradford made a superb atmosphere which you would expect from 4,300 of them. Bolton fans were quiet most of the game.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Massive police presence outside the away end but with only a short walk to the train station didn't see any trouble.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Decent day out and would definitely go again, keeps our unbeaten record intact and I can't wait for the home return game against Bolton now.

Bolton Wanderers v Preston North End
Championship League
Saturday 12th March 2016, 3pm
Paul Willott (Preston North End fan)

Derby Day defeats are hard to take. Losing bragging rights both home and away in the same season is simply awful….but to then also cop a 3-0 defeat in a promotion play-off final at Cardiff rubbed an extremely large quantity of salt into the wound. But thus it was in 2000/2001 with regards to our rivals from down the M61. If a week is a long time in politics, then the summer break is an eternity……….and to then see the Wanderers enjoy their start to life in the top flight with a 5-0 away win at Leicester City whilst we slumped to a 5-0 walloping at Gillingham only served to emphasise the fine margins at stake in those dreaded/much loved play-off finals. Little did we know that we would have to wait a massive 16 years for the chance to avenge such heart-ache.

Hence it was made as clear as possible to all concerned that even before the fixture list came out, I would be unavailable for weddings, funerals, christenings etc. et.c on whatever date such a fixture was produced.  One of the huge prizes for having secured promotion at Wembley the previous season was the chance to renew rivalries with Blackburn Rovers, Burnley, and Bolton. Perhaps unsurprisingly also, this was a prime candidate to be selected as the designated annual ‘Gentry Day’ for Preston North Enders, where supporters don bowler hats to honour comrades who have passed and to commemorate the legendary Alan Ball Snr, one time manager of the North End who used the term “gentry” in reference to the calibre of support given by the Deepdale faithful as he saw it.

Myself and Kieran Decked Out For Gentry Day

Bowler Hats On For Gentry Day

Given the high profile nature of the match, it was a relief once we had secured tickets for ourselves as the 4,500 allocation were going like hot cakes. I guess many supporters also sensed a real chance for payback. Games were fast running out now for a Wanderers side some 10 points adrift at the foot of the table and leaving aside the sad memories of the 2000/2001 season, older fans such as myself also recall the sad day at the end of the 92-93 season where at Burnden Park, our rivals gleefully relegated us; so would this fixture enable us to help push them closer to the brink of the drop?

Thus, the day before, we collected our youngest two children and commenced our journey up to the North-West from Kent for an overnight stop near Preston. Following a good nights sleep and a hearty breakfast, we paid a brief visit to the Deepdale club shop before making the short journey down the M61 to hopefully get there fairly early and avoid too much traffic congestion. To say that I was buzzing with anticipation since breakfast would have been a masterpiece of understatement. Our last trip to the then named “Reebok”, and only visit in fact had coincided with a mountaineering trip to Chamonix in the French Alps, so this was going to be my first ever visit to a ground I’d seen so many times previously from the motorway and the train yet never had cause to venture inside.

As this guide says, the ground is very visible from the nearby M61, but also from the Preston-Manchester railway line too. The transformation of the area over the past few decades has been quite remarkable from being just a huge swathe of flat green-belt. First the ground itself started to rise, and then some years later some of the adjoining hotels, and then the retail outlet, and finally “Horwich Parkway” railway station sprung up alongside the railway line. The name of the railway station denotes that Bolton now play a proverbial country mile away from their home town…….and indeed Horwich itself may look back wistfully on football heritage of its own. The Lancashire & Yorkshire railway works based in the town spawned the Horwich RMI FC that played there for many a long year until they uprooted and moved to the nearby town of Leigh. Unfortunately for them, the move across the invisible border into Rugby League territory badly damaged the fanbase and the club hasn’t fared so well at all. The other Lancashire & Yorkshire railway’s other works based team, formerly known as Newton Heath has fared slightly better down the years…….. Some folks have suggested perhaps tongue-in-cheek down recent years that Bolton Wanderers should change their name to reflect their new geographical location , but as the footballing world has never really objected to Grimsby playing in Cleethorpes all through the years, so I think it passes.

Macron Stadium Bolton FloodlightAnd thus we decelerated the car to leave the M61 at junction 6 and it did feel both odd and exciting. The Macron Stadium is sign-posted which I do find kind of amusing…..short of the thickest fog imaginable descending, it would be hard to miss the ground even before you reach junction 6 from either direction. We drove initially past the ground along De Havilland Way before turning right into Lostock Lane where we sourced parking easily for a mere £5. After a short and leisurely stroll to the ground, we joined the growing crowd of expectant Northenders waiting patiently for the away turnstiles to open. There was, perhaps unsurprisingly, a high profile police presence but supporters and the law were all in a relaxed and cheery mood. Security was also tight, with firm no-nonsense searches being conducted once the turnstiles were open. Inside the ground, the impression is perhaps not as great as the stunning exterior might suggest, but it is still a ground with an individual and characteristic feel to it as you can still see the distinctive floodlight clusters and sections of the steel upperworks that are trademarks of Bolton Wanderer’s home for the modern age. The stewards were very friendly and wanted to chat…..and some were curious as to why so many of us were bedecked in suits and bowler hats. We were more than happy to explain!

And so we settled down to enjoy the build-up to the match, and it really did seem like an atmosphere of two halves. The away end was positively fizzing with noise and excitement, and yet there was barely a whisper from the home supporters which did puzzle me as I’d have expected them to try and rouse something up for a derby game. It seemed as though there was an air of resignation around the ground; that relegation was a foregone conclusion. There was little evidence of any pride, defiance, or any such spirit that I did expect to sense prior to kick-off, I had suspected that the recent take-over of the club may provide an uplift but saw and heard little to suggest even a flicker of optimism – even the pre kick-off flag waving exercise around the centre-circle seemed half-hearted.

Preston Fans Finding Their Voice

Preston fans at the Macron Stadium Bolton

Meanwhile we sensed an away day victory was there for the taking, and ramped up the volume accordingly, and the players sensed it too as they got out of the traps early and put the home side under early pressure, and were unlucky not to take the lead on several occasions. However, goals change games, or so they say, and when the appropriately named Trotter put the Trotters ahead with a well taken shot from some distance through a crowd of players, one finally sensed some atmosphere from the home fans.Although the goal wasn’t received with the biggest eruption of noise, you still noticed the gloom lift considerably, and the home side had a reasonable run of possession. The home support perhaps now sensed that there was indeed still pride to play for, and with the longer term future of the club in safer hands, the sun-light trying to break through the clouds, with three points potentially in the bag, Fulham losing, the gap to safety down to 7 points…………….was there hope?

There was a brief lull in the usual terrace banter come the 33rd minute of the match, as the away support stood up to chant “hats off – for the 33” as had been suggested we should beforehand via social media, to remember the Bolton fans who tragically died in the Burnden Park disaster approximately 70 years previously.  Soon you could see all the home fans in the stand at the opposite end standing up to applaud………a sombre yet passionate moment, or should I say minute of togetherness…………until the clock ticked over to 34 minutes and hostilities resumed in the normal fashion.

Nat Lofthouse Stand

Nat Lofthouse Stand

In the second half, we were just starting to perhaps sense that it once again wouldn’t be our day……….we hadn’t scored a single goal against the Wanderers since 1992, we hadn’t won a “gentry day” fixture for nearly a decade…….when upon the hour mark something especially traditional to the passion of a north-west derby happened.  There was a goal mouth scramble, the ball pinging about like a yo-yo……until Jordan Hugill , a Preston striker clearly keen to grasp a chance to prove his worth as he hadn’t been picked all that regularly reached bravely with his outstretched head low down to try and get contact with the ball…..many others would have feared to do so with so many desperate boots flying about……but enough contact was made for the ball to just teasingly evade the keepers grasp and then teasingly slowly bounce over the line right in front of us.

Rarely have I ever sensed and experienced an eruption quite like it……….les face it, a goal is a goal, no matter how scrappy and unglamorous it may be, and in a derby that you’ve waited 16 years for………you just don’t care. 4,500 Preston fans roared their appreciation. Several flares and smoke grenades were detonated too and at least one found its way onto the pitch.  Let me be quite clear that I don’t condone such antics, and much as I share the passion of such moments, we really don’t benefit from those things being hurled about. To be fair, I think the goal was deserved, we had played the better football at that point….but of course, you want more don’t you??? You want the win! The players clearly sensed as much too, for they took the game to Bolton and attacked which did leave gaps at the back that Bolton tried to exploit on the counter-attack. But one heart-in-mouth moment apart when what looked like a good claim for a penalty was waved away to our relief, the Bolton strikers showed one of the reasons why their side was bottom of the table as they rarely seriously troubled Lindergaard in the Preston goal. And so once again……we were just beginning to sense that we’d have to be happy with a draw as the clock was beginning to tick down………when a teasing cross once again came speculatively in from the left, Vermijl had a shot that looked like it was covered by the keeper except that Doyle managed to get half a heel to it and deflect it in………….and that was it.

West Stand

West Stand

Sometimes in football, you just know. Despite all the stats and figures about injury-time drama, that 86th minute goal was the winner. You just knew it. As we roared with unrestrained delight and shared the ecstasy with the players, several of whom had donned some of the Bowler hats which fortunately were the only things to rain down on the pitch this time, you could simultaneously feel the very life-blood of Bolton’s season draining away like a punctured balloon, as many of their fans left in their droves unable to take the repeated bellow of “Bolton –going down!!” from their neighbours that they’ve been accustomed to lording it over in recent decades. Ironically enough too, the brief spells of sunlight dissipated too, and greyness resumed!

The only further drama was that Preston actually found the time and space to bag a third only for the linesman to adjudge that there had been an offside offence and so the score-line stayed at 1-2.  But there was no nervousness. No finger-nails chewed.  The fight was gone out of our opponents. The final whistle was greeted with much rapture, and none of the travelling support seemed in any hurry to depart; instead more keen to revel in the heady atmosphere of a win over Bolton Wanderers. There was no trouble in the vicinity of the actual ground after the match, although I did hear subsequent reports that there had been trouble both before and after the match but further away from the stadium. We fortunately though witnessed none of that, getting quickly into our car and onto the motorway with minimum of fuss and heading over to Sale to take in a curry with an Uncle of mine and a family catch-up. It did look horribly over-congested for those hoping to take a train though, and it was reported back that it was indeed as bad as it looked.

As the lights started to go out on Bolton's Championship status....

North Stand Floodlights Bolton

We reflected in the days afterwards on what a great afternoon we’d been privileged to enjoy……as the echoes down the corridor reverberated around with the news that the Bolton manager Neil Lennon had stood down in the aftermath of the derby day defeat to Preston, and they’d allowed Feeney, one of their better players to go on loan for the rest of the season. Bolton were clearly now planning for life in the third tier, whereas we were very much pushing for a comfortable top half of table finish. One other reflection stood out. When Bolton scored, the players celebrated amongst themselves. When Preston scored, the players immediately raced to celebrate with the fans. How lovely it was to be in the middle of such a purple patch with a great rapport between the manager, the players, and the supporters. We’ll savour every second of this era for as long as it lasts.

Good things are well worth waiting for!

Plus points for the Macron Stadium
1.Great location for those travelling by road.
2. Fantastic looking stadium that has character
3. Laid back, yet professional stewarding even for a high-profile match

Minus points for the Macron
1. The railway station cannot adequately cope with a large away following.

Bolton Wanderers v Queens Park Rangers
Football Championship League
Saturday 20th February 2016, 3pm
Rob Cooper (QPR fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Macron Stadium?  

This was to be my first visit to the Macron Stadium. I have driven many times past the stadium whilst travelling along the M61 and I thought it was time to finally watch a match there.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Probably the easiest away ground I've ever been to. Motorway all the way, Easy to park and got away really quickly after the game. I parked on an industrial estate 10 minutes walk from the ground. Only £3 to park there.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

Called into Tesco next to the ground and grabbed a sandwich. Locals were very friendly.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Macron Stadium?  

The Macron is a nice stadium and the away fans enjoy a good view of the pitch. However it was a foul day, cold with heavy rain. The turnstiles didn't open until 2pm, and it was a case of huddling outside the hotel trying to keep warm and dry. The roof offered no cover to the front of the away stand - I was 14 rows back, but my seat was wet, and I had rain blowing into my face through most of the first half.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

A pretty poor 1-1 draw (we equalised in the 90th minute). With Bolton having serious financial troubles and bottom of the table, it was very quiet. The facilities were good, and the pie (meat and potato) was tasty. The stewards were friendly, and it was a totally hassle free experience.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Less than five minutes from getting into the car to being back on the M61 motorway and on my way home. Easy!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A really good day out. It was very cold though, and I could/ should have put on some extra layers before leaving home. Next time, I will check the weather forecast for Bolton more carefully. The sun was shining when I left home. However I would definitely go to the Macron Stadium again.

Bolton Wanderers v Derby County
Championship League
Saturday 8th August 2015, 3pm
Andrew Keay (Derby County fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting the Macron Stadium?

I went to the Macron Stadium for the first time last season and I enjoyed it so much I couldn't wait to return. It is definitely in my top three away trips plus it was the first game of a new season.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

It was a relatively easy journey as I only live in Stoke so a straight forward trip up the motorways. You can see the ground on your approach from the M61 so it's easy to find. I parked on an industrial estate, which I found by first passing the Macron Stadium on the left, then turning right at the traffic lights then taking the first right. There was plenty of parking available at just £3, so good value too.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

As we had arrived at about half 12, we went to the Barnstormer Pub. We had visited the pub before on a previous visit. It is a lovely place and as it was a lovely Summer day we sat outside. We mingled with both Derby and Bolton fans which was very enjoyable. After a couple of drinks me and my daughter made our way down to the retail park next to the stadium, which has a number of different outlets and plenty of food options such as Pizza Hut, KFC, McDonalds etc.. We opted for a bite to eat at Subways then it was time to move onto the stadium.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the stadium?

The Macron Stadium is a lovely example and looks the business with it design and appearance. However inside the concourse does tend to get a little crowded but once you get to the seats the place is just fantastic.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.

The game was far from the best with both teams hitting the woodwork but plenty of mistakes from both sides. 0-0 just about summed the game up but found the stewards helpful and they seemed cheerful too. The only problem was at half time they wouldn't let fans out to have a smoke, so instead the toilets became a smog room with people smoking in them.

Comment on getting away from the ground:

After the game it was about a ten minute walk back to the car then a bit of queuing until back on motorway but not too bad. It took about 20 mins to drive about a mile and a half but once on the motorway flew home in fact I was back in Stoke about 6.30pm brilliant.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Wonderful day out at one of my favorite grounds. It was helped by the great weather. Just a shame the game didn't match it but can't wait to return again.

Bolton Wanderers v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Championship League
Saturday 31 January 2015, 3pm
Aimee Henry (Wolves fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

A chance to tick another ground off my list, and we were going there with an unbeaten 7 game run, stretching back to before Christmas. There’s always a bit of needle between England’s two most recognisable Wanderers (apologies to Wycombe), possibly going back to an ill-tempered play-off game in the mid-90s. I’m just slightly too young to remember it, apologies again If that makes you feel old! The ticket sales for the away end finished at just a smidgeon over 2,000, so it was set to be a good atmosphere in the away end. £28 a ticket is about the going rate for the Championship, I’ve paid more, I’ve paid less.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Decided to use the trains to get to this one. We split the journey a couple of times when booking the tickets, and got returns from Wolverhampton to Horwich Parkway for a little over £30, which is not too bad. The first train took us from Wolverhampton to Manchester Piccadilly, and after a short wait there, time for the toilet and a bar of chocolate, we went from Manchester Piccadilly to Bolton, then Bolton to Horwich Parkway. The travelling time was roughly two and a quarter hours. The ground is a short walk from Horwich Parkway station, just leave the main exit and it’s a straight walk to the Macron, which is visible from the station. From the quick glance at the timetables, the latter two trains in our journey run at a fairly regular rate, and it’s worth paying the couple of extra pounds to get a return valid for all journeys, should you be running late for any reason.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

I had a little walk around the ground, then decided to venture into Bolton’s rather snazzy club shop. Like most these days, it sold a mixture of replica gear, and your usual tat. A 50p bag of sweets has Bolton’s logo stamped on it, so becomes a £2 bag of sweets, you can have a Bolton Wanderers themed duvet and pillowcase, a Bolton Wanderers lunchbox, a Bolton Wanderers pencil case. Another interesting one was the signed photo of manager Neil Lennon. Priced at £45, it was perhaps a little more than I’d be prepared to pay…

The home fans were reasonably friendly, one middle aged man noticed my Wolves scarf and we had a brief chat about our respective seasons. I’d suggest the location and facilities around the ground mean that Bolton fans have little reason to mill around before kickoff, hence there weren’t an awful lot of them around.

There is a big retail park on which the Macron is situated, and plenty of places to eat. McDonalds, KFC, Nando’s, plus both a Tesco and an Asda. On the walk from the train station to the Macron you also pass two bars, including a Harvester. Amongst our travelling party was my teetotal dad and my brother who was attempting to avoid alcohol throughout the month of January, so we didn’t venture into the pub. What surprised me was the lack of food outlets outside the ground. I guess we’re spoilt at Molineux, where on a matchday you can’t move for burger vans, emitting that pungent yet wonderful aroma of frying onions. I often think Chanel should do that as a perfume, as in my experiences that’s a far more attractive smell to men than anything I’ve ever worn…

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is situated on a retail park, and to be blunt, if you didn’t know, you wouldn’t assume that the Macron was a football stadium. With its curved roofs and glass fronts, it looks initially like a cross between a Conference Centre and an Olympic swimming pool. Once you get closer though, and see the turnstiles and Bolton crests adorning the walls, you’ll realise it’s the stadium. The stadium takes the form of a large bowl shape, and feels very modern.

My favourite thing about it was the wonderful tribute to Nat Lofthouse. As well as a very nice statue, the area around it is where Bolton home their supporter bricks. For anyone unfamiliar with these, many clubs offer fans the chance to purchase a brick, have a message or a name put onto it, and it will be used somewhere around the stadium, visible for everyone. At Wolves, we have ours making up a wall outside the ticket office, which is slightly underwhelming I’ll have to be honest, but here the Bolton ones were right next to a statue of a man who must have meant so much to those fans, which I thought was a lovely touch.

Nat Lofthouse Statue

Nat Lofthouse Statue

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc...

The game itself was a fairly dull one, between two teams having an off day. We actually came out of the blocks quite quickly, and there can only have been about two minutes on the clock when Kevin McDonald’s lofted pass was controlled and finished superbly by Nouha Dicko. It was at this point that some guy across from us decided to let of a smoke bomb. Very colourful, but a bit worrying when you’re asthmatic father starts coughing quite heavily.

After that, we never really got into the game, we sat too deep and lacked a creative spark in the absence of flying winger Bakary Sako, who was flying home from the African Cup of Nations so was unavailable. Bolton themselves weren’t great, but there was a crazy 5 minute spell where they scored twice, to take the lead. Danny Batth cynically chopped Adam Le Fondre down on the edge of the box, and youngster Zach Clough stepped up to curl a delicious free kick into the far corner. There will be question marks over Carl Ikeme’s positioning, but take nothing away from the strike. Then barely two minutes later Clough scored again, taking advantage of some generous defensive work from Rajiv Van La Parra and Batth, to pick out the far corner, albeit Ikeme got a hand to the shot. As far as attacking play went, that was it for the first half, both sides had spells of possession but could create very little.

Second half was very similar, if anything we shaded the possession, but lacked any real spark. We barely registered a shot on goal. That was, until, added time. James Henry, a vastly underrated winger with a cracking right foot and a wonderful beard, put the former to good use to hammer in an equaliser from 30 yards. It was as pure a strike as I’ve seen in a long time, and the away end erupted. I somehow managed to cut and bruise my foot in the celebrations, I’ll take that all day long though, in celebrating a barely earned point. Bizarrely, Henry and his team mates ran the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of us, meaning they were all back in their own half. The referee allowed Bolton to kick off, with half of our team still jumping about in front of the away stand! Fortunately nothing came of it, and the game finished 2-2. We could have had no complaints had we lost, yet the last minute equaliser made it feel like a win.

The atmosphere was a bit flat, to be honest. I would say the ground was only 60% full, and there were great swathes of empty seats across all sections of the home support, meaning there wasn’t any continuous noise from anywhere. Even when they scored, the noise was drowned out by the dreaded goal music, something which I’m sure every fan would happily throw into Room 101, should they ever be invited onto Frank Skinner’s programme.

View From The Lower Away Section

View from the lower away section

The stewards were there if you needed them, but didn’t seem to be particularly enthralled by their job. One particularly surly one kept walking up the steps to tell fans to stay clear of the steps. It reminded me of a fussy Fourth Official, snapping into action whenever a manager dares stray from his technical area.

The food was a nice selection of pies, burgers, hotdogs. I went with the Holland’s Peppered Steak Pie, which I’d enjoyed a few weeks ago at Blackburn. It was again very nice, and again very peppery! You’d think I’d have learned my lesson…

The toilets were clean, although the hand dryers in the girls’ toilets were useless, I’d have been quicker blowing on my hands to dry them. I asked my brother what the men’s toilets were like, for the purpose of this review, but his shrug didn’t really help. I suppose if you’ve been to enough grounds you probably get used to the toilets.

The programme was fairly decent, the section on Wolves was well researched. It was quite child friendly, plenty of quiz pages. The captain’s article by Jay Spearing was laced with irony, given that two days ago he left to join Blackburn on loan. An interesting feature was ‘One to Eleven’, where midfielder Neil Danns selected the best XI he’s played with. If you’re interested, and why wouldn’t you be, he went with: Friedel, Clyne, Berg, Short, Konchesky, Moses, Dunn, Tugay, Zaha, Cole, Yorke. At £3 it was also priced in line with most other Championship clubs.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

The walk back to the train station was easy enough, but sadly a heady mix of a last minute equaliser, an already exisiting rivalry and alcohol meant that some fans, from both sets of teams, caused a bit of trouble at the station. One of the windows of the train was broken, causing about an hour’s delay. Thankfully, as mentioned above, we had the foresight to buy return tickets valid for any journey on that route, so we were able to catch the next available trains to the ones we had planned. It took slightly longer to get home than we’d planned, but fortunately seeing as Strictly Come Dancing isn’t on this time of year, we didn’t miss anything important on telly by adding an hour to our journey...

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A fairly dull game, bookended by two very well taken Wolves goals, made for an interesting afternoon in the biting Lancastrian wind. A draw which felt like a win which could have been a loss, as my brother put it. Mind you, he did lambast James Henry for contributing nothing to the game, about 30 seconds before he scored, so what does he know?

The Macron Stadium is a nice, modern stadium, but what it has in cleanliness and aesthetics, it perhaps lacks in charm and acoustics. It’s a nice place to watch football, certainly, but for the more traditional supporters amongst you, it may leave you pining for the ‘good old days’ of terracing.

Bolton Wanderers v Watford
Championship League
Saturday 22 February 2014, 3pm
Kevan & Eddy Simth (Watford fans)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It was going to be a nice way to round off a family half term break to the Peak District. Bolton have not won for a while and Watford fans normally enjoy away trips.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We stayed in a hotel a ten minute walk from the ground. Apart from the car parks immediately around the stadium we saw a few others located at in school and offices. Understandably it appeared to be easier to park than on a previous Premier League visit in 2006.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

There did not seem to be any food vans outside the ground so we had a cheeseburger and a chicken balti pie, which was on the small side, inside the ground. The food was of decent quality. Outside was very quiet.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground was nicely designed and looked modern and unique compared to other new stadiums. All sides are of the same design and height.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

From a Watford's fans perspective it was a boring game with few chances for Watford. A good first half by Bolton allowed them to take a 2-0 lead. After half time there were no real opportunities and Watford never looked like coming back from behind. The atmosphere was poor for both teams and even the normally vocal Watford away fans did not get into their stride. The stewards seemed fairly relaxed but there was nothing to test them as the atmosphere was poor. There were plenty of room on the concourse, the toilets were good and the view of the action was good.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Away fans exit directly towards the main road and this was made quicker by watching the last two minutes of stoppage time on the screens in the concourse. On the walk back the main roads were moving well.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day out but spoiled by the football from a Watford perspective although the defeat could have been heavier. Other than that a visit to Bolton is a worthwhile trip.

Bolton Wanderers v Leeds United
Championship League
Saturday 15 September 2013, 3pm
John Rogers (Leeds United fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Another 'first', although a ground I have seen many times during journeys around the North West.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The Reebok must be one of the easiest grounds in the country to get to and from, being situated just off junction 6 of the M61. Horwich Parkway railway station is just 200 metres from the stadium. There are several car parks in the vicinity, most of which charge in the region of £4-£5. However, if one doesn't mind a short walk of around 15 minutes, free parking can be found in the streets close to the Beehive pub.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

The Beehive pub can be used by away fans. There is a sandwich shop nearby and a Subway in the retail park adjacent to the ground, but little else as the stadium is not near the centre of Bolton or neighbouring Horwich.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is very distinctive, with an unusual floodlight pylon/cantilevered stand structure which gives it a character missing from many of the newer grounds. The capacity is surprisingly low for what appears to be quite a large ground from the outside.

The area around the ground has been attractively landscaped and the newly-unveiled statue of Nat Lofthouse provides a fitting focal point for a club with a long history.

Inside, the view is excellent, with clear lines of sight and steeply raked upper tiers that give the feeling of being close to the action.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Delighted with our 1-0 win, which continued Bolton's wretched start to the season - no doubt a contributory factor to the lack of atmosphere provided by the home support. The Leeds following, which numbered c. 4800, was again excellent throughout.

Contrary to what I had heard, stewarding was discreet and no attempt was made to force fans to remain seated. Leg room was excellent...probably more so amongst home supporters, who were conspicuous by their absence.

Refreshments were generally unexceptional and pricey. That said, I did wonder whether Boltonians wanted to appear more refined, offering glasses of wine and insisting my coke was decanted into a plastic cup.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy - 10 minutes from getting into the car to hitting the motorway.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The result was obviously the most important aspect of the visit to the Reebok, but I can't imagine there will be many better venues to watch Championship football

Bolton Wanderers v Cardiff City
Championship League
Saturday 3rd November 2012, 3pm
Steve Williams (Cardiff City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

We were looking forward going to the ground as it was one of the few grounds we hadn't been to.  We had been to the old Burnden Park ground years ago but since Bolton and Cardiff haven't been in the same league for years it seemed like a good away trip.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey was straight forward, the ground well is signposted off the M61.  Parking seemed limited, apart from the retail park (Middlebrook) which was rather busy. We decided to go past the ground and park around the Beehive roundabout area, about 15 mins walk to the Reebok.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?  

Having parked up in the Beehive roundabout area, we found an away friendly pub (The Beehive) that was full of Cardiff fans, nice relaxed atmosphere, decent pint and decent food. Also if you had kids there was a wacky warehouse on site too. Home fans in this pub seemed friendly too which always helps.   

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is very cool looking to be honest, mainly due to the unusual floodlights.  The away end view was great, as are most modern stadiums and the leg room was okay, which can be a problem sometimes with me being over 6 feet tall. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was poor with City losing 2-1 in the end mainly down to the ref having a nightmare game (that’s my view).  The stewards at the game seemed over the top to be honest and reading past reviews this seems to be the case for most away fans. Several City fans were ejected before half time. The atmosphere was quite good, bearing in mind Bolton’s home crowds have dropped some what since being relegated.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away after the game was easy , straight out into the retail park and a 15 min walk to the car.  You do come out though into the home fans, which can make things interesting.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Easy ground to get to, parking fairly easy, away friendly pub near ground and decent view.  All in all a good away day, apart from the result.

Bolton Wanderers v Wigan Athletic
Premier League
Saturday 11th February 2012, 3pm
Alan Parker (Wigan Athletic fan)

My son and I had previously been to this ground to support Wigan on three previous occasions, with one win and two draws. This match was a real 'six pointer' and a defeat for Wigan would have seen them really cut adrift. As it turned out, at the end of the weekend, just two points separated the bottom five teams, who seem to be forming a mini league of their own (QPR, Blackburn, Wolves, Bolton and Wigan). My son had brought along his German girlfriend, to experience her first football match.

We have passed the Reebok many times before, whilst driving along the M61. I have even been there on teaching courses, held in the luxurious board rooms. The stadium is not huge but is very attractive and well proportioned from the outside and the inside is no less impressive. The corners are filled in and there is an intense atmosphere.

Getting there is no problem, it is just a short distance off the motorway, and there is a railway station right by the ground as well. We took the first left turn and parked on an icy car park, costing £6. We got there fairly early, with the intention of walking to the Beehive pub about half a mile past the ground for a pint and to watch the second half of the Man United v. Liverpool match on TV. This is a good venue for away fans. On the way back to the ground, it was noticeable there was quite a large police presence and a few arrests were being made, but we had no idea what for. The German girl was intrigued by all the police horses and wondered why they used them. Had to think a bit for reasons! Getting into the ground was no problem, but as usual there are far more stewards around the away end than anywhere else and they carried out fairly random, half-hearted searches.

The concourse is quite cramped so we did not linger. We had seats in row G of the lower tier (actually the fourth row), looking directly down the touchline, quite different from our usual side-on seats at the DW. Wigan played magnificently, as if their very lives depended on the result, and the atmosphere in the away end was electric. Some flares were thrown and there was a lot of smoke at one time. Quite continental. Caldwell scored for Wigan just before half time, then Mark Davies equalised with a superb strike after a lucky deflection off Ngog's back. But McArthur scored a late, deserved winner for Wigan. Cue great rejoicing amongst the Wiganers. The Bolton fans were not impressed with their team's performance. There were boos at half time and lots of empty seats well before the end. As usual, Wigan were near the end of Match of the Day, and also as usual, there was little or no analysis of the match. They had spent most of the time on the Suarez non-handshake incident.

Bolton is a great away day. Tickets reasonable at £22. Lovely ground, decent leg room, home fans seem reasonably friendly, easy to get to, decent pub not far away. Let's hope this fixture will take place next season with both teams still in the Premier league. I realise it is easy to be generous when your side has just won !

Getting away was fairly easy, after queuing to get off the car park. The M61 is close by and we were soon heading North.

Bolton Wanderers v Norwich City
Premier League
Saturday 17th September 2011, 3pm
Thomas Ling (Norwich City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

This was my first visit to the Rebook and I was really looking forward to it. I had heard the the stadium was really good and modern and that the fans were friendly, which is always good on an away day.   

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey up to Bolton was straightforward and relaxing. We travelled by coach, which was supplied by a private company called Easton's. On the way we stopped at Castleford at a Retail Park, which 'conveniently' had a Wetherspoon outlet located nearby, where we enjoyed a good selection of food and drink at reasonable prices. 

We then continued onto Bolton and in total we spent five hours travelling on the coach from Norwich. The stadium was easy to spot just off the M61 and we parked right outside. This is was on one of the official car parks which you had to pay to get into, whether you were car or bus. 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We did not go to a pub or chip shop we just bought a programme and went straight into the ground. The programme sellers game right up to our bus which was quite handy. Although we didn't go to a pub, I noticed that there was a Harvester and a Premier Inn just across from the stadium, which if you are staying overnight or want something to eat or drink, then this might be an idea.  

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The catering area was okay but a little on the small side. But there was Sky Sports on, and when we got there they had the Blackburn v Arsenal game on which was very good. The away stand, the South Stand, was like the rest of the stadium being two tiered. The stadium was really good and looked great. In my opinion, it is one of the top stadiums in Britain.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was good for Norwich, with two quick goals in the first half, that set us on our way. Just after half time, Bolton were reduced to 10 men, when they had a player sent off for improper conduct. Bolton did managed to pull one back from the penalty spot but we held on for a 2-1 win. 

The atmosphere at the stadium was good from a Norwich perspective, but the home fans were a little quiet throughout the match.  They were good at the start of the game, particularly in the corner of the West Stand next to the away fans, but this ebbed away as the match went our way. There was also a drummer behind the goal in the North stand which banged on thought the match. Annoyingly, the stewards kept telling us to sit down, but we like most Norwich fans decided to ignore them and in the stewards soon gave up.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground was easy, walk outside onto the waiting coach, then after a 5-10 minute wait we were on our way on to the M61 and then it was an easy drive home. 
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I had really enjoyed my trip to the Rebook. This was a fun and easy to get to. It was also fantastic to get all three points.

Why not write your own review of the Macron Stadium Bolton and have it included in the Guide? Find out more about submitting a Fans Football Ground Review.

Updated 12th November 2016

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