Preston North End

Deepdale

Capacity: 23,404 (all seated)
Address: Sir Tom Finney Way, Preston, PR1 6RU
Telephone: 0344 856 1964
Ticket Office: 0344 856 1966
Pitch Size: 110 x 77 yards
Pitch Type: Grass
Club Nickname: The Lilywhites
Year Ground Opened: 1875*
Undersoil Heating: No
Shirt Sponsors: 32Red
Kit Manufacturer: Nike
Home Kit: White and Navy
Away Kit: All Red

External View
External View
Tom Finney and Bill Shankly Stands
Tom Finney and Bill Shankly Stands
Invincibles and Alan Kelly Stands
Invincibles and Alan Kelly Stands
Tom Finney Stand
Tom Finney Stand
Invincibles Stand
Invincibles Stand
Tom Finney Stand External View
Tom Finney Stand External View
Tom Finney Statue
Tom Finney Statue
External View
External View

With the addition of the new Invincibles Pavilion Stand in 2008, it now means that Deepdale has now been completely re-built in recent years. What was a great looking stadium, is now an even a better one as the new stand completely fills the remaining side of what was the Pavilion side of the ground.

Three sides of the stadium are composed of some excellent looking all-seater stands, complete with some spectacular looking floodlights. They are of the same height and style and are all large, covered, single tiered stands. Each has a likeness of a past player outlined on the seats and is named after that player. Tom Finney, Bill Shankly and goalkeeping legend Alan Kelly, are all honoured and this makes a welcome change from the boring letters outlined on most new stands. The first of these stands to be built was the Sir Tom Finney Stand in 1995. This was followed by the Bill Shankly Kop in 1998 and the Alan Kelly Stand in 2001. The fourth new stand, the Invincibles Stand (named after the legendary Preston team of 1888/1889 who went through the whole season unbeaten and were also the first in that season to win the League & FA Cup double), cost in the region of £9m to build. The design of this stand is slightly different from the other three. Even though it is of the same height and has a similar roof, it has a smaller tier of seating, with 22 executive boxes sitting above. Alas, I presume that there was not enough space to incorporate another player image on the seating so instead, we have to make do with the letters 'PNE FC' instead. Outside the stadium is a statue of former Preston legend Tom Finney. Whilst at the back of the Tom Finney Stand is a small cafe that also houses a collection of Preston North End memorabilia.

Away fans are housed in the modern Bill Shankly Kop at one end of the pitch. Normally the allocation for away fans is approximately half of this stand (3,000 seats). However for teams with a large away support, then the whole end can be allocated, raising the allocation to 6,000.

The views of the playing action and facilities within this stand are excellent. The stand is particularly steep, meaning that fans are kept relatively close to the pitch. On the concourse there are TV's by the refreshment serving areas showing the game live and with the bars being open during the game, this is too much of a temptation for some. There is a wide range of food available including; Cheeseburgers (£3.80), Burgers (£3.50), Hot Dogs (£3.50), Meat & Potato Pie (£3), Chicken Balti Pie (£3), Steak & Kidney Pie (£3) and the Potato & Butter Pie (£3). You can also get a pie, peas and gravy for £3.80, plus the Club offers a 'Pie & an alcoholic drink' for £6.20. James Prentice adds; 'I would recommend the 'Butter Pie', which is a bit of a local delicacy. It is just a normal pie but with a filling of very buttery mashed potato and onion. I was attracted to it by a flag at the top of the new Invincibles Stand that read 'True Prestonians Love a Butter Pie!' I particularly enjoyed my last visit as the fans, stewards and even police all seemed to be fairly friendly and there was a good atmosphere being generated within the ground. 

There is not a great deal in the way of pubs in close proximity to the ground. However there are a couple of nearby social clubs that welcome away fans. First there is St Gregory's Catholic Club, which is around a five minute walk away on Blackpool Road. The Club allows entry for a charge of £1, but offers reasonably priced drinks, hot pies, plus has Sky television. You can also park at the Club at a cost of £3. Secondly, there is the Moor Park Sports and Social Club, situated around ten minutes walk away from Deepdale, at the junction of Blackpool Road and Garstang Road across from Moor Park (PR1 6AD). Parking is available at the Club at a cost of £3 per car and non-members are admitted free into the club on matchdays.

Around a 15 minute walk away on Watling Street Road is the White Hart pub, which allows in away fans. It also has the added advantage of showing televised sports. If going away from the ground past Sainsburys and where Sumners was, then you bear right onto the Watling Street and the White Hart pub is along on the left.

Paul Billington adds; 'In all honesty visiting fans should avoid town centre pubs simply because the Police will move you on quickly if they see you and most pubs will refuse to serve away fans. If you arrive by train I would recommend the Vic and Station, not for the decor but simply convenience.' Otherwise alcohol is served within the ground. Albeit there is no draught beer only bottles or cans; Fosters Lager (£3.80 Bottle), John Smith's Bitter (£3.60 Can), Bulmers Cider (£3.80 Bottle) Wine (£4 Miniature Bottle). 

Whilst John a visiting Chelsea fan informs me; 'We went to Preston and had a great day. The Yates pub located about a 15 minute walk from the station towards the ground was fine and was okay for us away fans and family friendly. My only criticism of the ground was that it was difficult inside to get a drink as there was no proper queuing system and hence it was a mad scrum at the bar.'

Leave M6 at Junction 31 and take the A59 towards Preston. Go up a steep hill (there is often a police speed trap on the hill, so stick to the 30 speed limit) and follow the road down to a mini roundabout (note the speed camera by the BP garage on the left). At the roundabout with the Hesketh Arms turn right into Blackpool Road. Go straight on over three sets of lights and just before a fourth set, the ground appears set slightly back on the left. Parking is mainly in the streets surrounding the ground. There is some parking available at the ground itself, but at a cost of £12.50 per car. Nearby across Sir Tom Finney Way (behind the Main Stand) is another car park which costs £7.

Mike Holroyd adds; 'as you turn right at the Hesketh Arms roundabout into Blackpool Road and then pass a park on the left there is now another speed camera to watch out for. The Police also sometimes set up another mobile speed trap on the forecourt of the fire station on the left, so watch your speed. Plus as you near the ground don't be tempted to park up on the grass verges, you are likely to find after the game that you have been given a ticket for it!' Steve Thornley informs me; 'Parking for cars is available for £5 a car at Moorfields School. The car park is manned by volunteers from the school and all proceeds go into school funds. Just follow the directions above and at the last set of traffic lights continue straight on for about 200 yards, and you will see the school on the left near Moor Park'. There is also the option of renting a private driveway near in the local area via YourParkingSpace.co.uk.

Kate Abbatt suggests; 'If you want to avoid the pre and post-match traffic, here's a handy tip to avoid it. Instead of leaving the M6 at Junction 31, carry on to Junction 31a signposted, Preston East and Longridge. (This is a limited junction as you can only leave northbound and join southbound.) Keep in the right hand lane and go across the roundabout signposted Preston east, football ground and museum. Across the next roundabout (Anderton Arms on your right) and then left at the next one. At the next lights, go right onto Watling Street. You will go past the White Hart and a row of shops. At next lights by Fulwood Barracks, keep in the left hand lane. You can either park in Sumners, (turn left straight after the lights) or follow the road up to the big junction at Blackpool Road and the ground is on your left and take your chances with on-street parking. Sumners is better as you are the right side of the ground to get away quick after the game. Blackpool Road gets badly snarled up after games and the lights don't help it'. 

Whilst Martin Atheron informs me; 'Fans heading south down the M6 or onto the M61 or M65 after the match will find it quicker to head down Deepdale Road instead of going down Blackpool Road. In effect, turn left out of the ground rather than right. At the end of this road, turn right then immediately left and you are on the A6. Stay on this road for three miles and you can join the M6/61/65 at the big roundabout with traffic lights. This brings you out five miles south on the motorways and avoids the appalling traffic jams on Blackpool Road;.

Post Code for SAT NAV: PR1 6RU

Preston Railway Station is around a mile and a half from the ground and takes around twenty five minutes to walk, although you will pass some good pubs on the way, so it could take you longer!

Leave the Preston railway station via the main entrance, and head right at the top of the drive. This is the main High Street. Continue along the High Street, passing all the regular big name shops. Some good pubs and eateries can be found down side streets off the High Street, so if you have time, take a look. Try the Old Black Bull, and Academy, the later being about the last place on the High Street that will allow away supporters before you get to Deepdale. Colours are not recommended around town. The High Street (or Church Street/Fishergate as it's known) is about a mile long, and you will pass a church and a bike shop as you come to its end. Simply carry on walking along this street, and when you reach the ring road, you head straight over the large traffic lights, heading towards Preston Prison. Turn left at the Prison into Church Street, then left into Deepdale Road. Continue straight along Deepdale Road and after about a mile you will reach the ground.

Booking train tickets in advance will normally save you money! Find train times, prices and book tickets with Trainline. Visit the website below to see how much you can save on the price of your tickets:

Home Fans
Sir Tom Finney & Invincibles Stands (Premium Area): Adults £30, Concessions £23, Under 16's £9*
Invincibles Stand: Adults £27, Concessions £20 Under 16's £8*
Sir Tom Finney Stand: Adults £27, Concessions £20 Under 16's £8*
Sir Tom Finney Stand (Family Area): Adults £27, Concessions £20 Under 16's £6* 
Alan Kelly (Town) End: Adults £24, Concessions £16 Under 16's £8*

Away Fans
Adults £24, Concessions £16 Under 16's £8

* Under 8's can be admitted for just £2 with a paying adult if they join the 'Mini Whites' membership scheme. Concessions apply to Over 65's, Under 19's and Full Time Students with current NUS card.

Official Programme £3.

Blackpool, Burnley & Blackburn Rovers.

Preston North End fixture list (takes you to the BBC Sports Website).

If you require hotel accommodation in Preston or nearby Blackpool then first try a hotel booking service provided by Booking.com. 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. Just input the dates below that you wish to stay and then select from the map the hotel of interest to get more information. The map is centered to the football ground. However, you can drag the map around or click on +/- to reveal more hotels in the Town Centre or further afield in Blackpool.

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

You are only 20 minutes or so by car from Blackpool, which is Britain's premier seaside resort, so why not make a weekend of it? If you're feeling brave then try the UK's largest and fastest roller coaster, 'The Big One' at the Pleasure Beach. I braved it, but I think I was in shock afterwards! So much so that I had to seek out the Pleasure Beach bar for medicinal purposes. Only one word of caution, look at the other fixtures being played the same day in Manchester/Bolton/Blackpool etc... as your game. Simply because other away supporters attending these games will also be probably be heading to Blackpool after the game as well. So if there is a particular group of supporters from a club who you would rather avoid, then don't say I didn't warn you to check first.

Record Attendance

42,684 v Arsenal
Division One, 23rd April 23rd 1938.

Modern (all seated) Attendance Record

23,119 v Chelsea
FA Cup 4th Round, 23rd January 23rd, 2010.

Average Attendance
2019-2020: 13,579 (Championship League)
2018-2019: 14,160 (Championship League)
2017-2018: 13,774 (Championship League)

Preston v Reading
Championship
Sunday 29th December 2019, 3pm
Alex (Reading)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
I have never been to Preston North End before and Deepdale looked like a really nice ground to visit.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
As this was one of our away games where supporters get free travel I arrived at the Madejski at 7:30 in the morning tired as anything and got on the coach. The coaches left at 8 and the journey was okay not really hitting much traffic and arrived at the ground at half one.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We didn’t bump into any home fans really as our coaches dropped us off outside the away end. I wanted to sample some of the food on sale but me being stupid I didn’t have cash, only my bank card and the card machines weren’t working but oh well. 
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
The ground does look amazing I had a great view from the away end.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game itself was amazing we went 2-0 up inside of 16 minutes with Swift and Joao getting the goals and that’s how it stayed. We couldn’t believe that we were 16th and Preston were 4th before the game started admittedly our keeper kept us a great clean sheet and an almighty cheer went up from the away end when the final whistle went.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Back straight on coaches and within 15 minutes we were on the way home.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
An amazing game hopefully now we can get some momentum going now just 7 points from the play offs so looking forward to seeing what 2020 brings for Reading if the opportunity arises I would go to Preston again no doubt.

Preston North End v Barnsley
Championship
Saturday 5th October 2019, 3pm
David Crossfield (Barnsley)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
My fourth away game of the five played this season, having refused to pay £38 at Hillsborough. My son, a lapsed fan, his mate and his mates' young son went with me. I was hoping that my struggling team might score their first away goal of the season.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
We went by train. Barnsley to Leeds and then the direct hourly service to Preston. I had a Northern rail voucher so it was £7 each for us adults and £3.50 for the lad. A slow journey on the usual Northern Rail poor quality trains, but at least this one had three carriages. It's a good journey for spotting football grounds, Leeds United, Accrington Stanley (hard to spot), Burnley and Blackburn Rovers. I've been to Preston before so it was easy enough to walk to the ground and took about half an hour.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We had lunch in Twelve Tellers Wetherspoons. Usual stuff. You know what to expect, although the table service app wasn't working properly. The local Moorhouses Pendle ale was good. Then it was off to the nearby Guild Ale House. Lovely friendly micro pub with great real ales at good prices. We sat upstairs and had a relaxing couple of pints. We didn't see many football fans in there.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
I've been twice before so I knew what to expect. It's a nice ground with a good atmosphere. The view from our seats in the Bill Shankly Stand was good. With 1329 away fans, the stewards told us to sit anywhere. 19 rows back provided a good view.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
We were patted down by a line of stewards outside the turnstiles. The turnstiles had a bar code reader. As usual, I didn't have any refreshments. The toilet facilities were fine, except I was choked by cigarette smoke at half time. No smoking signs ignored. 
 
It's hard to describe the game without getting angry and upset. Our defence has been giving away the most pathetic embarrassing goals and they excelled in that again. The first half hour was even, poor quality and with few chances. Preston then took the lead. Our keeper did well to parry a shot, but the rebound fell to Johnson, whose looping header found the top corner. Just before half time, Barnsley scored their first away goal of the season after Preston failed to clear a corner. 1-1 at half time and some optimism for the second half. 
 
The optimism soon turned to despair. Preston scored four in the second half, with the Reds defence in a generous mood. The third goal looked marginally offside (where is VAR?) and the fifth looked like a foul on the keeper as he tried to clear it, but the result was never in doubt. An awful display. The Billy Bean Moneyball policy of recruiting young inexperienced players can't survive the rigours of the Championship. How long before the manager walks or gets the sack? It got worse when a video of some fans abusing a player at the end of the game appeared on social media.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
No problem. We walked back to the railway station. No time for a pint as the train was 17.46. Fortunately, we were so fed up we decided not to wait for the next train as that was cancelled.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
A good day out. Good ale. Good company. Spoilt by an awful display, which was embarrassing to watch. Promises to put things right in the January transfer window with some experienced players may well be too late. An interesting train journey home with a mix of fans. Happy Ipswich fans who had won at Fleetwood, Burnley fans who had beaten Everton and a few Everton fans. Where do we go for here? Well, I've already got my ticket for Huddersfield away, but after that I will have to think about my away trips.

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Championship League
Saturday 27th April 2019, 3pm
Adrian Hurst (Sheffield Wednesday)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
It was the last away game of the season, plus I wanted to re-visit a ground that has changed significantly since I had last been there.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
Travelling from South Wales the trip was fairly easy, straight up the M5 and M6, before driving along Blackpool Road to the ground. We got there early so used off street parking on St Gregory's Road.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We went to the St Gregory's Catholic Club, £1 entry and reasonably priced drinks. They had pie and peas to eat at £2.50 each which were very nice. The home and away fans mixed quite well.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
The ground looked very modern and impressive from the outside. When inside the other sides looked quite good, with the stand to our left having executive boxes and it looked as though there was some expansion planned as there was a space above the boxes. Strange not seeing any of the corners filled in and the only electric scoreboard being above the visiting supports stand so we couldn't see it.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
An awful first half that ended 0-2, followed by an excellent second period when we fought back to draw 3-3. The concourse was small so was packed for our 5000 following causing some crushing and unrest at half time. I was very disappointed with the stewards attitude, the one that searched me was ignorant and totally blanked me when I asked if my grandson and I should use the same turnstile. Inside the ground, the police and stewards seemed to be looking to drag anyone out from the crowd when we scored. For me, they spoiled what was generally a very enjoyable high scoring drawn match.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
It would have been easier to get away if the police hadn't decided to randomly close several roads around the ground and when I asked one why I got a sarcastic response. Apart from that, we were back on the M6 in about 20 minutes and back home for 9.30pm.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
An enjoyable day, spoiled somewhat by the heavy-handed attitude of police and stewards.

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Championship
Saturday 27th April 2019, 3pm
Mark Cartwright (Doing the 92)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
This was a last minute thing as the game that I had intended going to; Tranmere Rovers v Bury being called off earlier on in the day due to a water logged pitch.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I left the Wirral Peninsula at at around 1pm and arrived in Preston just after 2pm.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
It was a bit of a rush before kick off. I managed to park in the local council estate a stones throw away from Deepdale.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
The ground from the outside looks more like a factory of some sort, but inside it is very impressive. I managed to buy a ticket outside the ground off a Wednesday fan.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game it’s self was an incredible 3-3 draw. Preston started off like a house on fire and Wednesday had no answer, being two up at half time. In the second half Wednesday came out the blocks to the delight of the 5000 Wednesday fans and big Steve Bruce one of the best games have seen to date.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground was like getting blood out of a stone. It needs more parking facilities ASAP.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
I really enjoyed the day out.

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Championship League
Saturday 27th April 2019, 3pm
Megan (Doing the 92)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
A possibility of a high scoring game with both teams having nothing to play for and I was looking forward to visiting the ground as I had never visited before.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
The journey to Preston was quite easy, we travelled from Wirral and found it easy. We parked on a side road not too far from Deepdale and walked about half a mile to the ground.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We didn’t do anything before the game, except collect our tickets. We were running late as this was a last minute plan, so we didn’t have much time.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
We thought the stadium looked a little bit outdated but much better on the inside. The away end was huge!
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game ended 3-3 so it couldn’t have been any better! After a poor first half for Wednesday, in which they went 2-0 down, the second half was a lot more exciting! Wednesday pulled one back early in the second half, before the home side restored their two-goal advantage, making it 3-1. Wednesday got two quick goals to bring the game level and then had to play the last ten minutes with ten men after having a player sent off. Not a lot of food on offer half time they only had meat and potato pies left which I don’t like...
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground after was difficult. Loads of non-moving traffic.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
A good game with a good atmosphere from the away end I'm glad to have visited this stadium!

Preston North End v Birmingham City
Championship League
Saturday 16th March 2019, 3pm
Andy Brewitt (Doing the 92)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
This was ground visit number 82 of the 92 and a visit to one of the most established and famous venues in English football.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I parked on Deepdale Mill Street. From there it is a short and interesting walk to the ground. Cobbled streets, old railway lines and terraced houses.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I went to the Tom Finney bar/café. Fans and the staff on the door were friendly, it was for home fans only. I had a bacon barm to eat, regretted it later as the Butter Pies in the ground looked the business and very tasty but that would've been a culinary delight too far.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale  Stadium?
 
Deepdale is a very impressive ground. I had though wished I had visited before it had been redeveloped with four modern stands. I was in the Invincibles Pavilion which had character in keeping with the other three sides of the ground.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game was played in atrocious conditions, with high winds and heavy rain. I was in row ten in the Invincibles Stand and got an absolute soaking, if I'd been in row 12 I would have avoided the drenched experience. It is worth bearing in mind. 
 
Preston North End won the game deep into injury time to maintain their push to the play-offs. Rough justice on the Blues, who had brought over 5,000 fans with them. A great turnout and a very loud and supportive bunch.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
I took a different route out of Preston than on the way in. I followed the A6 and joined the M61 further south, just past Bamber Bridge. It was aar easier than the incoming route. M61 then the junction towards Preston at the A59.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
Despite the horrendous conditions, quite a hairy ride over the Pennines on the M62 and the soaking at the match, it was well worth it. They've done a good job at Preston of rebuilding the ground yet still retaining the traditions of the place.

Preston North End v Birmingham City
Championship League
Saturday 16th March 2019, 3pm
Callum Ramsey (Birmingham City)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Callum Ramsey Ground?
 
Myself, my uncle and my two cousins find a few away games a season we are all available for and book in advance. The Preston tickets were priced well at £24 adult, and £8 concession.  Deepdale is one of the Football Leagues historic grounds we hadn’t visited yet, so it was another ticked off the list.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
We had a look on this Football Ground Guide website and seen a few parking suggestions/ From this we chose to park at St Gregory’s Catholic Club on the Blackpool Road. We followed the directions off the M6/A59 and drove straight there. We arrived at 11:50, paid £3 to park and £1 each for entry. On walking inside we received a warm welcome from the people inside. There were a handful of Blues fans inside. The beer was very reasonably priced and Leeds v Sheffield United match was being shown on the big screen. Within the hour the place was packed full of mostly Blues fans. It was so nice seeing the two sets of fans interact with each other, something you rarely see these days.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
Inside St Gregory’s, then pie, chips/mash and gravy were served from a small hatch and the home fans were so welcoming. One old man mentioned how well he was treated on coming to St Andrews by the stewards as he couldn’t manage the steps with his walking stick.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
Deepdale is a very smart ground, the home fans didn’t make much noise and out of the 17,000 in attendance, we took nearly 6,000 supporters.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
It’s an old ground that has been redeveloped, like many of the older grounds such as Villa Park, Anfield, Goodison Park etc It’s very smart and the coloured seating arranged to make outline faces on the stands are very unique. On arriving at the ground all the staff, fans and police were very friendly and welcoming. We didn’t see a single bit of trouble. The only strange thing is you can buy beer before the game but not at half time.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
We got straight out, we hit some traffic due to a flood by the Scottish steak house on the A59.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
A good day out, shame we lost 1-0, in the dying minutes.

Preston North End v Norwich City
Championship League
Wednesday 13th February 2019, 7.45pm 
Will Thurlwell (Neutral)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?

I had been to Deepdale three times before as an away fan to see Preston play Colchester United, twice in 2007 and once in 2008, so it had been a fair while since I'd last visited the ground. I happened to be spending some time in and around the Preston area and saw that they had a headline fixture coming up against top-of-the-league Norwich City. I always had fond memories of my times before at Deepdale, remembering it as a ground that commands a strong atmosphere from the home fans in the Alan Kelly Stand. 

My nostalgia for the good away days I once had, coupled with the likelihood of an exciting game against a strong team, and the very competitively priced £15 student ticket – I cannot see League Two football in Colchester for that cheap! – meant that I couldn't say no for a return to the ground under the floodlights.

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

On all my previous visits to Deepdale, I had arrived via train into Preston. The walk from the station is a fairly leisurely but lengthy one at around 40 minutes, with half the journey going through the town centre and the rest through residential areas. There are a good number of pubs in the centre – notably, two Wetherspoons options, The Grey Friar and The Twelve Tellers, the latter of which is conveniently directly on the journey from the station to the ground. On this occasion, I came by car and found it remarkably simple to find nearby road parking. To the due south of the ground, following Lowthorpe Road into Skeffington Road, there is a large residential area with very few parking restrictions. I arrived fairly early (18:30) parked on a small road called Andrew Street with no trouble whatsoever. It appears that lots of home fans adopt a similar strategy, as the streets were considerably busier when I returned after the game, which also meant a small queue to get the car away again.

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

As a neutral, I was keen to arrive early at the ground to get a sense of what a full matchday is like. I was one of the first fans in the ground, so didn't really get to sample the local food and drink establishments on this occasion. There were a number of concession stands in and around the ground, however. The home fans that sat around me were all friendly folk.

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

This was my first visit to Deepdale with the fairly newly built Invincibles Pavilion Stand, where my seat was located (block G). When I was last there, this space played home to the 'Old Pavilion', which was a rather spectacular but unused monument of Deepdale's and Preston North End's history. I remember very fondly the fusion of three modern stands with the old one, and it made Deepdale really rather unique as a ground to visit. However, the new Pavilion, despite being smaller than the three stands surrounding it, is the spectacular final piece of the puzzle that fully brings Deepdale into the modern age of football stadia. The ground is pleasing both in aesthetics and function. The leg room is good, and the views, despite being fairly low down in the Invincibles Pavilion, were excellent. The away fans are housed in the Bill Shankly Kop – the acoustics of this stand and the Alan Kelly Stand opposite are well suited to generate an impressive roar from even a small number of fans. 

One personal negative for me, despite being rather old news now, is the relocation of the National Football Stadium from Preston to Manchester. This added a nice little activity onto an away day and it seems a pity to take the museum away from England's original home of football, despite the obvious financial persuasions of now being in Manchester. One can still see a small glass box located in the tower of the floodlight between the Bill Shankly Kop and Tom Finney Stand, where one used to be able to catch a glance of the stadium from the museum itself.

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

The football was an impressive spectacle, particularly as someone who has only seen relatively average League Two/League One football for the past decade! Preston despite their fairly lowly position in 16th, outplayed the high-flying visitors in quite remarkable fashion, cashing in on an early free kick two minutes in, and extending the lead twenty minutes later with an assured penalty from captain Paul Gallagher. The visitors never really got going and their night was effectively summed up by their subsequent penalty miss in the first half. 

Preston extended their lead against the run of play in the second half after a fine half-volley from 25 yards was followed up by Sean Maguire. Norwich gave what few fans they still had left in the ground a consolation on 93 minutes before their long Wednesday-night trek home. As a Colchester fan with some lingering animosity towards Norwich after the Paul Lambert fiasco of 2009, the result was pleasing! The atmosphere was fairly decent, but at only half-full with 11,200 fans, it was not as loud as I remember on previous visits. I bought a Diet Coke at £2.30, which is slightly more expensive than I would expect even at Championship level, but there was a fairly good array of food and drink on offer. I like that you can buy a beer token before the game to cash in for a quick pint at half time, which seemed to do an effective job of minimising queues in the break. My one complaint was no card payment available in the Invincibles Pavilion, despite, apparently, being on offer in the other stands! The staff were friendly, although when I pleaded with the steward to pop out of the ground so I could access an ATM, my request was denied.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground was simple; a large mass of Preston fans clearly have the same idea to make use of the extensive road parking every week. The roads were busy upon departure, but it was hardly gridlock and added no more than about ten minutes onto my usual 20-minute drive back to the local town of Longridge.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

On the whole, it was excellent to come back to Deepdale. Despite being a chilly winter's evening, the quality of the football on show in combination with the first-rate stadium made it a wholly enjoyable occasion, even as a neutral without a real stake in the outcome of the match.

Preston North End v Doncaster Rovers
FA Cup 3rd Round
Sunday 6th January 2019, 2pm
Jim Duffy (Doncaster Rovers)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?
 
I've been to Deepdale on a couple of occasions. This fixture was changed to a Sunday kick off for the benefit of overseas television.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
The ground is easy to find from the M6. My son researched and found a decent parking place near the ground that was easy to get to.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We parked at the St.Gregorys Social Club for £3. We then paid £1 to enter the social club and the beer cost less than £3 for a pint. The home fans were welcoming and there was no animosity at all.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
The Deepdale ground is modern with the cantilever stands, the service areas were well manned and toilet facilities were roomy and clean. It's a pity that the football museum has moved from there to Manchester.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
Preston aren't having the best of seasons so far and their fans seemed to be a bit subdued, our fans are having a good season and we created a good away atmosphere. I had a tasty chicken balti pie for £3. The stewards were friendly and I can't recall seeing any police presence.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
The social club car park was easy to exit from and it leads to the junction that's controlled by traffic lights so everyone has a fair opportunity to get onto the exit roads.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

We had a great day out, the motorways were running fine, finding the social club for parking and a pre-match pint was a bonus and the Rovers beat a team 3-1, from the league above and so the journey home was good too!

Preston North End v West Bromwich Albion
Championship League
Saturday 29th September 2018, 3pm
Bruce (West Bromwich Albion)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?

First time I had been to Deepdale and I wanted to see the statue of Sir Tom Finney. For the record Deepdale would be my 78th ground watching the Albion.

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

Very easy. I came by train from London. It was a very pleasant stroll through town from the station to the ground.

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

I went to two very good pubs. The first was just off the High Street but I don’t remember its name. The second was the Old Bull and an excellent pint of “ flat cap” rather liked the sign in the window “no children” nice to enjoy a quiet drink without hordes of squawking kids! A friendly place.

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

I enjoyed Sir Tom’s statue. The Deepdale Stadium was a little uninspiring but I enjoyed the feel of being in a ground with so much history. Rather a lot of gaps in the home end. Good turn out from our lot but always surprised to see so many youngsters glued to their phones & not watching the footy, a sign of the times!

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

I never tend to buy food and drink inside a ground. The queues are too long and the food/drink overpriced. It was goalless in the first half but five goals in the second to recreate the 1954 cup final score of 3-2 to the Baggies and our first win at Deepdale since 1959 meant a great day out.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy, a nice stroll back to the station, pity I didn’t have time to have a pint at the Bears Paw, next time perhaps!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Obviously winning away puts a shine on things (my first for over two years!) nice pubs, a good journey, a win all in all a good day. I do think that the Championship is a poor standard this year, but enjoying it more than I have over the last few seasons.

Preston North End v West Bromwich Albion
Championship League
Saturday 29th September 2018, 3pm
Jacob Bishop (West Bromwich Albion)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?
 
My first away game in over a year and a new ground too. West Brom had been relegated since the last time I travelled away and with a new brand of football under Big Dave, I was excited about the season.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I travelled on the supporters coach which took about three and half hours to get there and half the time to get back.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I had a burger outside the ground, didn't really see any home fans before the game, the stewards seemed friendly.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Deepdale?
 
The view from the away end was excellent, right behind the goal and looking as I went up the rows a good view from all areas. They let you sit anywhere you wanted which was good as me and my mate had to get tickets apart from each other.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
What a result, top of the table (just a matter of staying there now). The game should have been buried as Baggies had a ton of chances. Was a bit touch and go in injury time as they got one back to make it 3-2 but we still got there and won for only the second time away that I've gone to. The atmosphere was all Albion, quite a few empty seats in the home end.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground was easy. Straight back on the coach and only took us just over an hour to get back to The Hawthorns.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
Quite a good day out, sunny, Albion winning, going top of the league. Deepdale was quite a nice ground too.

Preston North End v Stoke City
Championship League
Saturday 18th August 2018. 5.30pm
Liam Clowes (Stoke City)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
Now living in the Wirral, this game was one of the closer games this year and I had never been to Deepdale so was looking forward to it.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I travelled there and back on the train which was easy enough with one change at Wigan North Western.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I walked straight to the ground from the railway station by using this guide and found that it was a relatively easy straight walk. I passed a few pubs but had no time to stop and have a drink. I only saw one pub with a strict "no away fans" rule which, to me, says that most businesses are quite welcoming to away fans.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
Deepdale is a small stadium but a nice ground for a Championship club. There was quite a lot going on at the outside of the ground with stalls and burger vans.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
A 2-2 draw, Stoke looked very poor first half but improved and either side could have pinched it at the end. The atmosphere was good in the away end with 3,100 Stokies singing away. The only time I really heard the North End fans was when they scored their goals. Other than that, it was a poor atmosphere for a home side.
 
At half time, I was caught up in a pepper-spraying incident by the Police on fans which has since been well publicised. I could still taste the pepper spray until 11pmish the same night. Appalling policing and let down Preston as a club as stewards and fans were all very welcoming.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Straight 25/30 minute walk back to the railway station and had a chat with a few friendly North End fans.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
A good day, fair result, friendly fans and stewards but let down massively by the unnecessary force used by the Police.

Preston North End v Queens Park Rangers
Championship League
Saturday 4th August 2018, 3pm
Ronan (Queens Park Rangers)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
I was looking forward to it as I support QPR and I’m from Ireland so I don’t get the chance to get to many away games. So with it being the first league match of the season, I thought I’d give it a go.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
My journeys never easy coming from across the water but I flew to Manchester Airport and then got the train straight into Preston. From there it was an easy 25 minute walk to the Deepdale ground, which was easily found.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
Our flight was delayed so we arrived at the ground a bit later than we wanted, we got there around 1:45 so we just made our way straight inside.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Stadium?
 
My first impressions of Deepdale was good, was impressed with it, it seemed modern from the outside and it’s very spacious around it and a lot going on definitely a lot different from what we’re used to at Loftus Road.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game itself was poor. A shocking QPR team were beaten by a not much better Preston side. A game of few chances and Preston took theirs but we could have had a 90th minute equaliser only for a wonder save from there keeper, they did love to run the clock down that did get on the nerves of the 1067 travelling supporters, overall the facilities were really impressing and the stewards were friendly and helpful.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground was no problem just a 25/30 minute walk back to the railway station.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
A good day out, but a poor game. I will be doing it again next year if we can stay up.

Preston North End v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Championship League
Saturday 17th February, 3pm
Aimee Henry (Wolverhampton Wanderers fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?

With Wolves flying high at the top of the League, every game is something to look forward to. It certainly makes a change from the last couple of seasons, that’s for sure. The season is just starting to reach its critical stage when Winter begins to turn to Spring, and with just 14 games left, Wolves were travelling to Deepdale hoping to at least maintain, if not extend, their 12-point gap from second placed Aston Villa.

I’ve made a couple of trips up the dreaded M6 to Deepdale in the past, in fact this would be my fourth visit. All three previous games had finished as draws, including two utterly dreadful 0-0's. I was cautiously optimistic of seeing my first Wolves win here though, and travelled in good spirits, along with 5,600 other members of the Wolves faithful. Not in the same car though, obviously…

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

I was on driver duty for this one, and having collected the rest of our travelling party, we set off for Preston at just after 11am. We were all set before this but had a false start after my Uncle realised he’d left his match ticket, wallet, and phone at home. To be quite honest, I’m not sure what he had actually remembered to bring with him. The M6 gods were kind to us, for a change, and we had a relatively pain free, stress free drive through Staffordshire and into Lancashire. Certainly, less stressful than the occupants of a Citroen we passed, which was on fire on the hard shoulder just outside Bamber Bridge. We left the M6 at Junction 32, onto the M55, left at Junction 1 and took the A6 right into the heart of Preston. We parked at a local School, which is very close to Deepdale itself. It was just before 1 when we got there, and their car park was already filling up, so I’d suggest if you wish to use their facilities, get there as early as you can. Parking was £5 I think (as driver, I left it to my dad to sort payment). The ground is well signposted from the nearby streets, and like a lot of grounds, the floodlights are visible, rising high above the surrounding houses. 

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

By the time we had parked up and walked to Deepdale, it was after 1pm, giving us a couple of hours before kick-off. We had been advised by Wolves that we should get to the ground early, and as turnstiles were opening at 1:30pm, we decided not to visit any pubs, and head into the ground once it was open. I bought a programme from a seller outside, and after the pyrotechnics dog had decided I didn’t have a firework hidden somewhere on my body (I’ll let you decide where!), we went into the ground. There weren’t many Preston fans around at this point, as I assume like a lot of home sides we visit, they stay in the pubs until just before kick-off. 

We went into the ground and went straight to the bar. What impressed me was that they had already got what looked like a hundred pints already poured and ready, presumably in anticipation of the thirsty Wolves fans entering the ground en masse. A really good idea, and something a few clubs could certainly do with copying! I had a pint of Strongbow for £3.80. I don’t normally like Strongbow as I find it quite vinegary, but when the choice is Strongbow or nothing, the flavour suddenly improves quite a bit! There was also Fosters, Guinness and John Smith’s on offer, all for a similar price. As I was hungry, I also indulged in a famous local delicacy, and let me tell you, I was glad I did! The ‘Potato and Butter Pie’ (£2.80) might just be the best pie I’ve ever had at a football ground. Without playing to type, the pies tend to be off a really good quality in this part of the world, and Preston is no different. If you’ve never had a Butter Pie, it’s essentially Mashed Potato and Onion, and it’s blooming marvellous! 

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

I really like Deepdale as a ground. It’s not the biggest, or snazziest, or newest ground in the league, but it still looks good from the outside. The floodlights often make a ground, and Preston’s are great. There’s a cool statue of Tom Finney, Preston’s legendary star from days of yore. The away end is a single-tiered stand, with no obstructed views, and a really good view of the pitch. The concourse is spacious and well laid out. 

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

Backed by a raucous away following, Wolves started the game by having plenty of possession, without doing a great deal with it. Ruben Neves, known as the Kevin De Bruyne of the Championship (mainly by me, it must be said) was having another excellent game in the Wolves midfield, and he went close to breaking the deadlock, when his first-time volley from a half-cleared corner whizzed over the bar. The Portuguese front three of Costa, Cavaleiro and Jota were causing problems, but couldn’t test Rudd in the Preston goal. At the other end, John Ruddy could have spent much of the first half 10 feet behind him, in the away end. He had very little to do, aside from a couple of crosses which he caught easily. Preston came closest when Alan Browne headed wide from an unmarked position just before half time. 

If the first half was tame and tepid, the second half was anything but. Preston, to their credit, came out after the break much sharper than we did, and first Ruddy had to be at his brilliant best to push Browne’s effort onto the post. Then, Matt Doherty made a terrific block to deny Darrell Fisher the Preston right back, with Doherty deflecting the shot over the bar for a corner. Unfortunately, the respite was only temporary, as Preston scored from the corner, Browne again finding himself unmarked at the far post, and this time he made no mistake, nodding the ball past Ruddy and into the net.

The game really changed on the hour mark, in a crazy two or three-minute spell which sums up the Championship. From another Preston attack, Big Willy Boly in Wolves defence made a great interception and played the ball out to Cavaleiro. The winger looked to break, but was brought down by John Welsh, the Preston midfield enforcer. Unfortunately for Welsh, he’d already been booked first half, and his second cynical foul of the afternoon brought him a second yellow card of the afternoon, and he was off for an early bath, a Butter Pie and a long hard think about his behaviour. Less than a minute later, it was 1-1. A great break from Cavaleiro (again) saw him burst past three or four tame challenges, before sliding the ball through to Helder Costa. The winger still had lots to do, but once he had forced the ball past the last defender, he coolly slid the ball into the far corner, bringing pandemonium to the away end. 

After this, it was all Wolves. Understandably so, with it being 11v10, but annoyingly we couldn’t make our man advantage count, and Preston defended very deep, but very well, and clung onto a point.

The atmosphere was decent, but not amazing. The away end was packed, and very noisy, but the three home stands were half full at my guess. There was a large gathering of home support which congregated next to the away end to the left, but they appeared to have an average age of about 17, and I would guess their average IQ would be a similar figure…

Stewards were very helpful, the pre and post-match music was great (Oasis and The Stone Roses, you beauty!), and as mentioned, the Butter Pie was a real treat. My only gripe, and I have this a lot, is that it took quite a while for the stand to empty at the end of the game. The programme was well made and put together and had lots of information about Wolves. £3 is the regular price in the Championship, but it felt like money well spent in this case. 

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was a 5-minute walk back to the car at full time, and it took a little while to get off the car park and back onto the main road. Once we were, the traffic was a little slow getting back to the M55, but from there it was another relatively smooth journey home. I got back to my house at around 7:45, so two and a half hours after getting back into the car at full time, so definitely no complaints on that front! 

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A decent point on the road from a competitive game, if not a classic. It took us a point closer to our promotion target, and as Villa lost, it increased our lead over them. Lovely! Although I’ve yet to see a Wolves win at Deepdale, and in four visits now I’ve yet to see a really good game, it’s a good ground to visit, and definitely one worth ticking off if you’ve not been before. The views from the stands are great, the facilities are good, and you can really get a decent atmosphere going in the away end. 

Preston North End v Barnsley
Football Championship League
Saturday 9th September 2017, 3pm
Tom Bellamy (Barnsley fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
Having been to Deepdale the previous season and seeing Barnsley win 2-1, I was again looking forward to this fixture.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I travelled by car and took the M1, M62, M61 and the M6 coming off at Junction 31a. I followed the signs for Preston and parked on the road side just before The Sumners pub.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
The pub itself was packed full of both sets of fans and there were quite a few outside. Although I didn't have a beer myself I mingled with the fans who were all very friendly.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Deepdale?
 
Deepdale is a very decent ground and one of the better ones in the Championship League. The 1800 plus Barnsley fans were housed in the Bill Shankly Kop End where the concourse is good and the bar/ drinks/ food outlets are of a good standard. I had a good seat with plenty of leg room and a good view of the playing area. The other sides of the ground didn't appear to look all that full of home fans, the total attendance of just over 12,000 being announced over the tanoy.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game got off to an even start from both teams, and although there weren't a lot of chances the open play was good. Preston had the first chance with a close range shot just whizzing past the post, and then it wasn't long after when they scored the first goal, which came about from some poor defending from Barnsley but a well-taken header from Maguire. That was after 25 minutes but the home fans barely stopped celebrating when Barnsley equalised with Potts scoring from close range after a good cross from Hammill on the right wing. So it remained 1-1 throughout the game even though both teams had their chances to win. It was a fair result although I think the Barnsley fans went away the happier. I know I was.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
It was very easy getting away from the ground with no problems at all.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
I enjoyed the day, having come away with a good point and consolidating 15th position in the league and just the same two points behind Preston

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Football Championship League
Saturday 5th August 2017, 3pm
Joe (Sheffield Wednesday fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
It was the first game of the season and I had never been to Deepdale before so was quite excited
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
The journey there was a simple one from Sheffield along the M62 before changing to M61. There is a park across the road from the ground where parking is £5 which was good.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
We went to The Summers pub before the game which is a short walk from the Deepdale ground.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Deepdale?
 
I went into the ground an hour and fifteen minutes before kick off to see the pictures of Preston legends on the stand seating which is a really unique part of the Deepdale Stadium.The Invincible Stand on one side ruins it for me though because you can tell it is a recently built stand and doesn't go along with the player outlines on the seats theme.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game was a very poor one where Wednesday lost 1-0 to a Daniel Johnson penalty. The atmosphere was very poor in the away end for the most part of the game. The pies were very nice and quite cheap at £3 and the concourse was very spacious.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground was an absolute nightmare being stuck in traffic for 45 minutes after the game. After that, it was an easy drive home.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
Deepdale on the whole is a very nice ground, with good pies, convenient parking, a nice pub for away fans, but it was really poor getting away from the ground. I will definitely go back to Deepdale again one day.

Preston North End v Newcastle United
Pre-Season Friendly Match
Saturday 22nd July 2017, 3pm
Ian Bradley (Neutral fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?
 
My third visit to Deepdale, a stunning stadium I always look forward to visiting.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

A two hour train journey followed by a 45 minute walk to the ground passing Preston Prison on the way.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I went to the McDonalds across the road from the train station for lunch, usual fayre but better than the food and drink served up at inflated prices inside most grounds.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of Deepdale?
 
Deepdale is a thing of beauty with great views, good legroom, one of my favourites in the Football League.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
It was a very competitive Pre-season friendly between two decent sides. The match ended honours even at 1-1, Barkhuisen for Preston cancelling out a Mitrovic opener for the Toon in front of 7,380 fans. 
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Back into the City centre in 20 minutes and then off home without any bother.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Brilliant!

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Football Championship League
Saturday 31st December 2016, 3pm
Joe (Sheffield Wednesday fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?

I was looking forward to visiting Deepdale as it is always exciting to visit a ground that you've never been to before.

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

The journey from Sheffield was a comfortable one as not many people were on the road early in the morning on New Year's Eve. We stopped off at nearby Chorley first for a few pre-match drinks as this was suggested by one of the lads who had been to Preston before. Chorley is a nice little place with a few pubs and eating places I would definitely recommend it.

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

Our minibus driver parked in the local retail park close to the ground as parking is very minimal near the ground of what we could see. Deepdale did have that traditional ground feel, walking to the ground in between local houses with both sets of fans rather than a industrial estate or in the middle of nowhere which has become the norm with the newer stadiums. When inside the ground the concourse was big and spacious but was hard to manoeuvre in this case as Wednesday had brought close to 5,000 fans. I was slightly disappointed with the size of Deepdale I knew it wasn't the biggest ground but I certainly thought it would be bigger than it was.

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

The game itself was poor from a Wednesday perspective, the first half was even. However in the second half Preston came out of the blocks and were much the better side creating some really good chances. They eventually broke the deadlock on 78 minutes when a cross was deflected into the Wednesday goal. They continued to press and hit the post shortly after and I was convinced this was not our day and we wouldn't be getting anything fro m this game cause quite frankly we didn't deserve anything. But in the 95th minute Adam Reach popped up to smash home a Wednesday equaliser which caused jubilant scenes in the Wednesday end and I was delighted that we had managed to salvage a point after a terrible performance and the game finished 1-1. In terms of the catering facilities I couldn't comment cause I didn't purchase anything but other facilities such as toilets etc were fine.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground after the game was a bit of a nightmare. It's a one way in and one way out road to the ground so it took us at least 30 minutes to get out of Preston itself but once we were out we were fine and managed to get home okay.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Overall great day out made even better with a last minute equaliser. I will certainly be visiting Deepdale Preston again in the future!

Preston North End v Huddersfield Town
Football Championship League
Wednesday 19th October 2016, 7.45pm
Steven (Huddersfield Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?

We are currently doing well so nearby away games are tempting. Deepdale was my first ever away march as 9 year old in 1963 when the pitch was almost square . I visited again in the early eighties.

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

Was easy to find with good instructions from this website. Good car park next to Sainsbury's around the corner from the Sumners pub.

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

Went into Sumners for a quick pint. As it was a night match there wasn't much time for anything else however the food there looked excellent.

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

Deepdale is a very nice compact stadium. Vastly different from my two previous visits. Away end has a brilliant view and plenty of leg room. Also decent pies at half time.

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

Our end was almost full and as the Sky reporter said our fans were relentless so couldn't hear the Preston fans at all even though we got thrashed 3-1 and deservedly so.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was very easy getting away from the ground. There wasn't a big crowd around 12,000 so not really many queues.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Apart from getting a puncture on the M62 after the game, it was a decent evening apart from result. I have a soft spot for Preston as it's where my grandmother is laid to rest and it was my first ever away ground.

Preston North End v Aston Villa
Football Championship League
Saturday 1st October 2016, 3pm
Sty (Aston Villa fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale ground itself?

I suppose the only 'good' thing about being relegated is that you get to go to new grounds you've never been to before. Deepdale being such a ground. I was particularly interested in seeing the mosaic faces on the seats.

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

As we travel from North Wales to nearly every Villa game, this was easy. Straight up the M6, come off for Preston and follow signs for Deepdale. the ground creeps up on you really fast and we ended up right outside. There was a car park right across the road from the Club Shop so we parked in there for £5.

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

We had a walk around the ground, had a look in the Club Shop and then made our way to the away entrance.

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

I have to say outside the ground that I have never seen a floodlight structure like it. I cannot work out if it is a thing of beauty or a monstrosity! When we first went to check out our seats the stadium was virtually empty. I always find this is the best time to take in a football ground. The face mosaics are a brilliant idea and very impressive, as are three other sides of Deepdale. I felt that the Invincibles Stand let down the rest of the ground, mainly due to what looked like a lot of wasted space along the very top of the stand, which I thought really spoilt the look of it. But on the whole Deepdale is a nice little ground.

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

What an awful display by Villa resulting in two defensive mistakes and a 2-0 defeat, which resulted in being the last game in charge for Roberto Di Matteo. I felt very sorry for Preston to be honest as their home support was (attendance-wise) shocking with empty seat across all 3 home stands. We however took 5,000 fans who made a lot of noise throughout the game, and more so at the end as our team was booed off the pitch for such an awful display.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

We got out of the car park pretty quickly but had about a 15 minute wait in the traffic lights opposite the ground while Police hand signalled traffic through. After that we were away, no problems, and back on the M6 south.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A nice and relaxed day out and if we are in the same division next season I will have no hesitation on going back to Deepdale. I would like to add that at £24 a ticket for an adult, and £2 for a ticket for my 7 year old daughter, this I thought was extremely good value for money and one in which more clubs should follow.

Preston North End v Aston Villa
Football Championship League
Saturday 1st October 2016, 3pm
Andy Newman (Aston Villa fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale ground itself?

I had previously visited Deepdale in the 1960's and not been back since - I wanted to see how the ground had been re-developed. Also as my son is at University in Preston, it gave me the chance to see him too!

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

Very easy although we arrived in Preston early so probably missed any 'football traffic'. The ground is well sign-posted and is easy to find. I parked near the University and walked to the Deepdale Ground (taking 20 minutes). I noticed that there is lots of car parking in and around the ground itself, including parking in the park right opposite, which cost £4.

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

We went to a Wetherspoon's pub in the town centre which welcomed away fans, no problems and everybody seemed to mix well.

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

Deepdale looks very impressive from the outside with a nice statue of Sir Tom Finney. The away end had good sight lines and although we were towards the back, we still had a good view. The other sides were good, with murals of Alan Kelly and Tom Finney pictured within the seating which was a nice touch.

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

Stewards were friendly and helpful, atmosphere good mainly due to visiting fans of which there were 5,500! Very good programme and good value at £3.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

No problems and got back onto motorway quickly.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day out despite another away defeat and recommend visiting especially if not been before.

Preston North End v Barnsley
Championship League
Saturday 10th September 2016, 3pm
Tom Bellamy (Barnsley fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Ground?

Although it was still early in the season Barnsley were third from top and Preston were third from the bottom. Also this would be the first time I have visited Deepdale, plus I would be amongst 2,000 away supporters and therefore I was really looking forward to the game.

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

The Deepdale Ground was very easy to find. I took the M1 North from Barnsley, then the M62/M61/M60 and finally leaving the M6 at Junction 31a. I found a pub called "The Sumners" which was only ten minutes drive from the M6. I paid £3 to use their car park. Deepdale was only another ten minutes walk and straight in at the away end of the stadium called the "Bill Shankly Kop".

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

My daughter accompanied me to the game and so we had a drink in the pub along with dozens more Barnsley fans. The majority of which were watching the Man Utd v Man City game on television. I didn't notice many home fans in the pub so the atmosphere was really good.

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

The stadium looked really good and very modern. The away fans were all together behind the goals in the Bill Shankly Kop End. We had really good seats about half way up the Stands and so had a great view. I was very impressed with Deepdale.

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

The whole match was very entertaining with both teams starting off well, and Barnsley taking a 1-0 lead going in at half time.In the second half Preston began to create the more chances and so deserved their equaliser with a great 20 yard goal. However Barnsley came back at them and scored a great winner eight minutes from the end. The final score being 2-1 to Barnsley.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

There was no problem at all in getting away from the ground, back to the pub car park and then an easy getaway.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

It was a very enjoyable day out especially for all the travelling Barnsley fans and getting a good away win to consolidate our league position.

Preston North End v Leeds United
Championship League
Saturday 7th May 2016, 12.30pm
Shaun (Leeds United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale ground?

The final game of the season is always an opportunity to let your hair down and a number of supporters were in fancy dress while many others brought inflatables to throw about. The good mood and a large away support (about 5,500) meant that there would be good atmosphere

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

Took the train from Manchester airport (having flown in from Ireland) straight to Preston and it took just about 50 minutes to get there. From the station it takes about 20 minutes to walk to Deepdale,

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

Went to the pub at the top of the station (sorry forget the name) Its friendly to away supporters and had a great atmosphere. The walk to the ground goes through the pedestrian centre of town so can grab a pie/chips etc.. along the way.

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

Deepdale is impressively redeveloped! Looked like a new ground. Great view from behind the goal, and great atmosphere. The only unusual thing is the builders were obviously worried about the floodlights falling down. I mean why use one pylon to hold them up when you can use 10! (or maybe they just had some spare pylons to use up)

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

Being the last game of the season all 22 players were thinking more about their summer holidays/ what club they might be joining over the summer and a game of football didn't break out until the 75th minute. One of our supporters had brought a surf board with him and surfed the crowd in the second half which was more entertaining than anything happening on the pitch! (take a look at it on Youtube, although bear in mind there is sow swearing involved) Facilities were good and the stewards were one of the friendliest and tolerant I've met at a match.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy enough. The Police pretty well escorted everyone back to the railway station where trains were waiting. The pubs were unable to distract us by being closed! We were out of there (not by choice) in an hour.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Enjoyable day out. The few home fans I met, the stewards and the Police were all very helpful and friendly. Would happily go back.

Preston North End v Burnley
Football Championship League
Friday 22nd April 2016, 7.45pm
Sean (Neutral fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale Football Ground?

My brother and I were in England from the United States. We are both Everton supporters but we had a day in Manchester and as we were close, we decided to go up to Preston for the game.

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

Very easy from Manchester Picccadilly. We took the train up to Preston then took a cheap taxi to Deepdale.

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

There's a pub next to Preston Railway Station so we had a pint there before heading to the stadium. The home fans were friendly but as they were playing Burnley so a lot of them were agitated to say the least.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impr essions of away end then other sides of the Deepdale Football Ground?

The stadium looks great inside and out. The away end was rocking as Burnley are going up and they brought 6,000 supporters. Burnley scored early and won the game, so the away end didn't stop singing for 90 minutes.

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

The atmosphere itself was incredible. It was great to take in a Championship level match and see how the second tier is. Had a pie which was good and I think around three pounds, was not too expensive. No problem getting to bathrooms, all food/beer vendors open on the concourse.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Taxi to the station and back, no problem, no taxi drivers trying to over charge foreigners.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I had a great time at this though I wish the home team could have won or at least scored. If you are ever in the North of England, Deepdale is definitely worth your time to visit!

Preston North End v Queens Park Rangers
Football Championship League
Saturday 19th March 2016, 3pm
Joe Hylton (Queens Park Rangers fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale football ground?

I've been to Preston several times over the past four decades, first time was when the great Nobby Stiles was the Preston manager and Rangers had Clive Allen up front for the R's.... Wouldn't say I was particularly looking forward to the game, no more than any other Rangers game up north, but I was looking forward to seeing how the grounds refurbishment had progressed since my last visit which was about three years previous to this one.

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

Not a difficult journey from West London this time, always advisable to check if Liverpool and the Manchester clubs have a home games as this will add to traffic congestion on the M6... No problems this time, roughly four hours driving in total to Preston. Last time we parked in the Fire Station on Blackpool Road, sadly that facility has been withdrawn, so we carried on and parked in a school just to the north of Deepdale for £5.

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

Couldn't really see any pubs or restaurants within walking distance of Deepdale, but there is a large Sainsbury's only a five minute walk from the away end with a decent cafe within the store. Very handy for a pre-match light lunch after the long motorway drive.

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

Deepdale is very impressive now it's completed, that is all but the executive boxes situated to the left of the away stand which I can only guess will be finished should Preston gain promotion. The away stand is a mirror image of the home end, the way this stand is structured made for very good acoustics from the traveling 900 QPR support. I really like Deepdale, they've got it right for football by refurbishing the old ground, unlike many of the new purpose built stadiums which are soulless and devoid of atmosphere.

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

A decent game of football between two good Championship sides...you never know what your going to get, or which QPR team will actually turn up on the day, which is why we all love the beautiful game so much. As Rangers scored very early in the first half our support was buoyant throughout this encounter, Preston equalised in the 92nd minute, and I have to say a 1-1 score draw was just about the right result.

Can't pass comment on the food outlets as I didn't partake, can only assume from the volume of our support using the kiosks that the food and beer were up to the usual standards. The match stewards and police were helpful and friendly, this is how it should be at every football ground.... just safe, with no intimidation factor.... Have to mention a really nice touch by Preston, there were posters of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink inside the ground, for Rangers fans to take home that thanked us for making the round trip of 450 mile trip to support our club.... just a really nice gesture from Preston!

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

This was the only downside to the whole day, it takes an age to getaway from Deepdale, there is a large retail park near the ground, that retail traffic mixed with the football traffic make for a nightmare exit to the motorway.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I enjoyed my day at Preston, the home supporters were friendly and I look forward to the corresponding fixture next season. One last point, I have to mention the Preston supporter in the stand to our right, who was wearing a turban on his head. He continued, even at one nil down, to wave a Union Flag throughout the whole match and was sporting a very long white distinguished beard. If every football supporter put as much visual and vocal encouragement into supporting their team, then grounds would be full to the rafters....Again, if this fella doesn't get Preston supporter of the season, then the vote must be fixed.... just a top, top, supporter!

Preston North End v Brighton and Hove Albion
Football Championship League
Saturday 5th March 2016, 3pm
Samuel Theodoridi (Brighton and Hove Albion fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting Deepdale?

In the two years I had spent up at college in Preston (Myerscough College which is about 8 miles outside of Preston and also the College attended by Anthony Pilkington of Cardiff City) I had not once visited Deepdale to watch a match. When the date was announced, I decided that I would be going to watch this one. It also gave me the opportunity to meet up with a few friends and reminisce about my time at Myerscough.

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

I travelled up to Preston the day before the match to avoid having to get up ridiculously early. I was going to travel using Megabus, but I managed to get my train fare down from £113 to £34 plus the cost of the tube in London and the bus in Preston, so it made sense to catch the train. As for finding the ground on the day, I got on the Bus at Bilsborrow and got off at Moor Park, with the ground on the other side of the park.

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

I stayed at Guy's Thatched Hamlet in Bilsborrow, which is only a stones throw away from my old college and enjoyed a few drinks the night before and a nice lunch of Tomato Soup, Lasagne (both the best I've ever had) and a mug of tea, on the Saturday before catching the bus to Moor Park.

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

From the outside Deepdale it looked as if they'd used rather a lot of sheet metal, but run out before they finished it. I think it's fair to say that Deepdale isn't the prettiest of football grounds you'll ever see. I met my friend outside the ground and then we went inside. Three of the stands were of the same height and quite steep, and you get a good view of the game as a result. The other stand with the dugouts looked unfinished and rather poor, which was a shame.

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

We brought just over 1000 up from the south coast and we were making all of the noise! The Preston fans were quiet for most of the first and second half which surprised me. Towards the end of the second half they perked up a bit and made it seem a bit more uncomfortable, but to be honest, there wasn't really much to cheer for them or us up until that point, it was a rather dull 0-0 draw which was probably a good result in the end, as North End aren't a bad side in this division.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

I had no problems getting out of the ground and I walked back to Preston Railway Station with my friend and had a bit of a chat about the game amongst other things, before going back to Guy's and meeting with a couple of other friends.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I enjoyed it very much. I'm glad I went and if we don't go up this year I will be going back again next year, hopefully to see us win!

Preston North End v Brighton & Hove Albion
Football Championship League
Saturday 5th March 2016, 3pm
George Northover (Brighton & Hove Albion fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale ground?

I was looking forward to this game as it was a chance to get another ground ticked off the list and of course follow Brighton away. Also two consecutive 4-0 wins of course had made the wait for it that more exciting. It was a game that my friend had suggested to me that we should go to as it was close to his 18th birthday. I also thought Deepdale looked quite an impressive ground whilst looking at it on this guide and I was looking forward to actually seeing it in person.

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

I used a fan run coach called BHA Blues Away. We left Eastbourne at 6am in the morning and we stopped at Warwick services for around 45 minutes.The journey was traffic free on all the motorway's so quite a stress free journey in all arriving in Preston at 1 o'clock where the coach dropped us off outside the away end.

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

Once we arrived in Preston, the first thing we did was look for a pub. On our way to find a pub a kind local directed us to St Gregory's social club, it is £1 to enter for non members and has cheap prices for a pint at £2.80 (a lot cheaper than we're used to down south!) we spent around an hour and a half in there before making our way to the ground.

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

The ground looks impressive from the outside with it's rather different floodlights than what you'd expect at most other grounds in the country. As you walk out from the concourse you see how steep the stand is which when you are at the back of it gives you a very good view of the playing action.

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

The game saw both teams cancelling each other out. A few minutes before half time Brighton's Jamie Murphy hit the back of the net only for it to be offside. Which was also the case in the second half when team mate Tomer Hemed also found the net, but the goal was disallowed. There wasn't much of an atmosphere created by the Preston fans even if they did have a drum and also that they hadn't turned up in great numbers. The facilities at the ground were what you would expect from a ground in the Championship, we didn't have a massive following so it was easy to move around the concourse and get to the toilets.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

After the game we got straight back on the coach that was parked outside the away end, once everyone was back on the coach we made our way home. Again we stopped at Warwick services for around half an hour. Like the journey up it was mostly on the motorway and I got back home to Eastbourne at around 11:30pm

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Although the game was a 0-0 draw, it was a good day out overall, another ground ticked off my list and I can now look forward to MK Dons away.

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
Football Championship League
Saturday 20th February 2016, 3pm
Brian Butler (Sheffield Wednesday fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Deepdale ground?

This was my second visit to Deepdale, after enjoying my first. Overall Deepdale is a good ground to visit.

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

We parked at St. Gregory's Primary school, an ideal location close to Deepdale and costing only £3.

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

We went in to St.Gregory's Social Club next to the school, a very friendly club with both sets of fans enjoying a drink and some food.

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

Deepdale is a very attractive looking ground both inside and out.

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

It was a well contested game, with both teams in form. Wednesday went down to ten men for the last half hour of the game. Preston were able to capitalise on this and score the only goal of the match. The stewards friendly. The concourse was a bit tight for a big away following of 5,500 Wednesday fans.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Not the best ground for getting away, stuck in slow moving traffic for 30 minutes.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Despite the result we still enjoyed our visit, especially to the St. Gregory's Social Club.

Preston North End v Reading
Football Championship League
Saturday 12th December 2015, 3pm
Will Care (Reading fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting the Deepdale Football Ground?    

I was visiting some mates in Liverpool who are at uni there, and while being up north it seemed the perfect opportunity to tick off another ground. I have been to most other grounds in the Championship League, but due to Preston recently being in League One it's a ground which has slipped through the net. Steve Clarke had just been sacked and we were on a poor run of form, making this game quite exciting as both teams would be expecting a win and I felt the team needed some support.

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

My journey was simple on the day having already travelled to Liverpool, it was a quick train ride of around an hour to Preston station. From there me and my mates joined up with some other Reading fans and using this guide found Deepdale easily and probably took around 25-30 mins. However, the weather was awful and rain was coming down in sheets, with flooding in the area we were worried that the game could be cancelled as lower league games in the area were being called off.

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

As soon as we arrived at Deepdale we spoke to a group of stewards who assured us that the game was going to go ahead. After that relief we took a quick look at the Tom Finney statue and then had a burger from a van outside the away end. Most supporters seemed to be heading straight inside the stadium as quick as possible due to the weather, but the few preston fans I spoke to seemed friendly.

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

Even though it seemed we were walking through gale force winds we struggled to the ground and my first impression was very positive as the Deepdale ground itself is very impressive with towering floodlights. The stadium has character and the away end was suitable inside. Inside the ground is equally impressive however one side of the ground is much smaller to the other three. The view from the away end was fantastic.

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

When the game kicked off I was pleased it was going ahead and felt positive that the players would have something to prove, but this optimism faded quickly as Preston took control of the game and we could not get a foothold in the game. Preston hit the post just before half time but we went in 0-0, a scoreline which was not reflective of Preston's domination and flattered reading. I naively hoped for a response which did not come, though our goalkeeper Bond made two fantastic goal line saves. I felt Preston getting frustrated until our skipper McShane brought down Garner who stepped up slotted the penalty away confidently. Reading didn't look like getting anything and the game was looking to fizzle out until the last 10 minutes when Reading put some string of attacks together the best of which saw Nick Blackman through one on one who shot high over the bar. That was our best chance of the game but Preston won the game deservedly. The atmosphere was flat from the home end, but I will reserve judgment as the weather did not help things. The 566 Reading fans who made the journey were in good voice with some Xmas songs, but most were disgraced with the performance.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy. We walked straight back to the railway station only to find that our train was delayed over an hour!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Considering the bad conditions, the overall day out to a new ground was enjoyable but ruined by the game itself. I would go back to Preston but want to go to a few more new grounds beforehand, but a cup draw or with better form I could see myself making a return visit.

Preston North End v Blackburn Rovers
Football Championship League
Saturday 21st November 2015, 3pm
Daniel Ainsworth (Blackburn Rovers fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting the Deepdale football ground?    

This was a local derby for Blackburn Rovers and my first trip to Deepdale due to Preston not being in the Championship League for some time.. Also, we had sold out our entire away allocation and the game had been built up for sometime in the media.. So I couldn't wait!

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

We went with a local pub who run coaches to every Blackburn away game. We set off at around 12:45pm for what should have been a short 30 minute journey. However, since it was a local derby, the Police stopped us on the outskirts of Preston and made us wait. We finally arrived at Deepdale at 2pm. We pulled up at a cordoned off area and got off the coach.

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

We had a walk around Deepdale whilst some others off the coach went up to the Summers pub about a ten minute walk away. We needed a soft drink and found a small shop nearby. I also bouth a programme from a seller outside the ground. We experienced no trouble from any home fans.`

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

Deepdale is a very historic ground and has a interesting statue of Tom Finney outside. We were housed in the Bill Shankly Kop End. This was packed due to the small travelling distance. 

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

The atmosphere was second to none - especially due to the raucous away support. We sang all the time except for when they scored. Preston fans were very good though and the banter made the game enjoyable. Stewards were at the front and didn't bother us. The pies were great. The Clayton Park Butter Pie had just won an award and was amazing (it cost £3.20).

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Due to the vast amount of visiting supporters, we had to wait thirty minutes inside the ground before being escorted out. Those who had travelled by train were compulsorily put onto waiting buses by the Police and driven straight to Preston Railway Station.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

It was a great day out and the fans were great for both sides. It was even better when we won 2-1.

Preston North End v Derby County
Championship League
Saturday 9th September 2015, 3pm
Andrew Keay (Derby County fan)

Why were you looking forward to visiting Deepdale?

I had not been to Deepdale for over 20 years. So I was looking forward to seeing how the ground had changed.

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

Not too bad at all. Drove up and came in off the M6 at Junction 31a. I would recommend this to anyone traveling northbound as it is much easier and hardly any traffic. I then parked in a street about a ten minute walk away from Deepdale.

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

I was going to go for a drink but the Sumners pub was five deep at the bar. So I decided to make for the ground. I got there about an hour before kick off so I had a chance to look around the outside. I particularly liked the Tom Finney "Splash" monument.

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

It was nothing like I remembered, as it looked very modern. It was a wooden stand last time I went ha ha. The new stands were admiral with great views and plenty of leg room.

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

I had a Potato and Butter Pie from one of the kiosks. It was very nice too and only £2.80, so good value. The game itself was okay with Derby winning 2-1. With 3,300 traveling away fans this made for a good atmosphere. All credit to the Police and stewards, both very polite and relaxed and happy to chat as were the Preston supporters.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was brilliant to get away from where we had parked, got back to the car and left via Junction 31a again and was back on the motorway in under 10 minutes.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A very enjoyable away day helped by the friendly atmosphere and of course the win!

Preston North End v Coventry City
League One
Saturday, January 18th, 2014, 3pm
Alex Smith (Coventry City fan)

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

Coventry City have a rotten record at Deepdale having never won there. Plus I have been to Preston twice before and was not impressed on both visits. But this time we were stopping in Blackpool for the weekend so I was looking forward to it for that reason.

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

We left Coventry at 6pm on the Friday for Blackpool and the motorway was surprisingly quiet for a Friday evening. We were in Blackpool for 8:15 and we checked into the Havelock House Bed & Breakfast (which I would strongly recommend) and then hit Blackpool town for the night. We went to the King George pub and was brilliant, Friendly atmosphere, good DJ. We left for Preston at around 11:00 on the Saturday morning via a minibus which was very reasonably priced.

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

We went to the Fulwood Conservative Club which is located on the Blackpool Road. It was not very busy and the drinks were very cheap and had very good facilities, We did not speak to many North End fans but the ones we saw kept to themselves.

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

I never used to like Deepdale, but since they replaced that old stand on one side, it has improved dramatically. The new stand is not particularly eye catching, but has boosted greatly the overall look of the stadium.

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

The One and Only programme priced a £3 was a decent read with lots of information on both clubs, The game was all PNE and I mean all PNE they were all over us and we were lucky to be going in 0-0 at the break. I purchased a burger inside the concourse and I have to say it was delicious and definitely worth the £3 I paid. The Stewards were helpful approachable, and talkative.

The atmosphere was good from the 900+ strong Sky Blue Army. The second half picked up from the first and PNE continued to dominate eventually going 1-0 in the 57th minute through Kevin Davies which improved the atmosphere from the Preston fans. But then Coventry responded and kept on coming close, Leon Clarke firing over from close range and Andy Webster missing a open net from a Blair Adams corner. Preston tried to time waste towards the end of the game. Fans keeping the ball in the stand, taking long at throw ins, kicking away the ball everything they could do they did. Kevin Davies was sent off on 87 mins for a two footed tackle on Andy Webster.

We were into added time when Coventry's Denzel Slager took a shot which was blocked by Neil Killkenny. The ball landed at the foot of Franck Moussa and hit a absolute cruise missile from 35 yards out and hitting the top corner which sent the away fans into raptures! The game ended 1-1 although with that very late equaliser, it almost felt like we had actually won the match!

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

There were a few altercations outside the Bill Shankly Kop end which let the stewarding down a bit. Other than that there was no trouble. We met our mini-bus at the Fulwood Conservative Club and made our way back to Blackpool. It took us no longer that 40 minutes.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Preston away is a good opportunity to a brilliant weekend away in Blackpool. So if you are going on your travels to Preston this season I recommend stopping in Blackpool for at least one night. So in the end, what I thought was not going to be a great trip, turned out to be one of my favorites. 

Preston North End v Blackpool
Capital One Cup 1st Round
Monday, August 5th, 2013, 7.45pm
Michelle-Louise Burrows (Preston fan)

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

There may be Rangers v Celtic, Liverpool v Everton or Man City v Man Utd but, in this corner of Lancashire, this is THE derby. Which fan wouldn't have been up for it?  That said, I saw things at that match that I never want to see again.

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

Took the car and decided to park in Preston Bus Station before taking a taxi to Deepdale. Because of the modern nature of the derby, I removed my Blackpool stickers from the car as I did not want it vandalised.

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

Went straight to the ground but, even on arriving in Preston, I felt very apprehensive. So I took the unusual step of hiding my colours. Although I have friends who are North End fans, this is NOT a friendly derby.

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

Having been to Deepdale before, I've always found it an impressive ground, just right for a club the size of Preston. I particularly like the way, like us, they honour their heroes e.g. Sir Tom Finney, Alan Kelly, Bill Shankly etc. We were given the Bill Shankly Kop due to the huge travelling support from the Fylde.

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

Less said about the match the better. Blackpool had innumerable chances to win the game but, as usual, fell to a sucker punch three minutes before the end. I had no complaints about the result but the stewarding was appalling. I am not an animal and I will not be treated as such. The rudeness from the PNE stewards was a disgrace but not as much as some of the "fans".  As the final whistle went, over 300 of their number decided to invade the pitch, not so much in celebration - you'd have thought by their reaction they'd have won the Champions League, the World Cup, the Lottery, the Grand National and the Eurovision Song Contest rolled into one! - but to goad the Blackpool fans, amongst whom were women and children. I though our supporters showed marvelous restraint in the face of such unwarranted provocation, even though the Police and stewards did absolutely nothing to stop this behaviour.  I did feel sorry for the decent North End fans who should have been savouring a deserved victory over the old enemy having it spoilt by idiots.

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

I was terrified after the match and, thanks to one decent Policeman, I got a lift back to Preston Bus Station. Even then, there was violence of the worst order with missiles being thrown, our supporters being attacked and the Police failing miserably to keep a lid on it.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Never in the thirty seven years of me following Blackpool Football Club have I been so terrified for my own personal safety as I was that night. The stewarding and policing was totally abject. Even when I was driving home, some goons threw a brick at my car, narrowly missing it, and surrounded the car which was only averted when I put my foot down. A coach load of our supporters was ambushed by Preston "fans" and vandalised. It was a huge stain, not only on Preston North End FC who should have been celebrating a victory over us for the first time in God knows when, but the County of Lancashire. Has football really gone back to the bad days of the 80s? Has the rivalry between Preston North End and Blackpool, once friendly, turned so bitter and vile that innocent fans can be attacked just because of whom they support?  I dread to think what would happen when we play each other again. Especially if it's at the Blackpool end of the M55.

Preston North End v Wolverhampton Wanderers
League One
Saturday, August 3rd, 2013
Sam Martin (Wolves fan)

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

I had not been to Preston North End before but appreciated that it was an historic club. I was also looking forward to the new season despite my club, Wolves, having suffered successive relegations. “FL72” was also flogging the game as an historic fixture commemorating 125 years of the football league between two of its original founder members. Suspect it all felt a little different in 1888!

Tom Finney Mural

Tom Finney Mural

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

I went with my brother and - forming part of the Wolves diaspora - actually travelled up to the game by train from London Euston. Though expensive, the train was very quick on the way there given the distance (almost two hours exactly). Preston has a rather nice Victorian train station which is very close to the city centre. We only had a vague idea about how far the ground was from the city centre (maybe two miles) and got a taxi to the ground (£5ish) and then walked back to the station after the game.

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

Well there was a pub right by the train station that was allocated to Wolves fans. It was absolutely mobbed as Wolves had taken a large away following so we tried a real ale pub called the Black Horse in the town centre – lovely interior, cracking local ales and friendly staff despite the fact the pub was also full of Wolves fans and was reasonably priced.

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

The ground is very modern but is saved from being an “identikit” stadium by some nice touches acknowledging Preston’s impressive history including a mural Tom Finney on the outside of the Main Stand. Seating was fine – though everyone in the away stood there was no harassment from stewards about standing. Thought the stadium compared favourably to Turf Moor and even Ewood Park which I have attended previously.

Come on you Wolves!

Deepdale view from the away stand

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

Game was a pretty dull, a nil-nil draw. As is fairly standard nowadays it seemed the majority of the noise was made by the away fans. But the weather was nice and the ground was reasonably full. Stewards were very friendly. I don’t think I had a pie as I was still recovering from a large bag of  hairy pork scratchings, I had at the pub but the prices seemed reasonable compared to most stadiums (though obviously not when compared to anywhere else in the real world). Only big downer was that I could not find a programme vendor.
 
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Had to walk back to town to get the train. Not a particularly nice walk to be honest but no trouble with home fans (though we were not in colours) or anything like that. There was a heavy police presence at the station which was unfortunate and was a bit heavy handed. It seems to rile people up as much as keep the peace.
 
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Good day overall despite the disappointing game. Like virtually all former industrial towns of the Midlands and North, Preston has probably seen better days  but there are certainly some nice parts of Preston and some good pubs if you look around. Journey back was delayed by well over an hour,  which coupled with an early onset hangover, managed to sour the end of the day a little.

Preston North End v Sheffield Wednesday
League One
Saturday, December 31st 2011, 3pm
Dan Brennan (Sheffield Wednesday fan)

Wednesday, despite two poor results recently, are flying high in League One and 4,000 other Wednesdayites must have thought the same as me - this is a very good opportunity for three points.
 
Myself and a friend got the train to Preston from Sheffield Midland Station. This included a change in Manchester Piccadilly and cost £29, which seemed quite steep, so I think if I went again I would look at a different means of travel.  From Manchester Piccadilly it took about an hour to reach Preston. From the station it took us a good half an hour to walk to Deepdale.

Some friends of ours are from Preston, and they recommended that we try the famous 'Butter Pie' whilst we were there. We did so but  upon tasting, I'd advise leave it well alone if I was you! Pubs seemed to be few and far between, however, and many of these seemed very Preston-orientated.

Deepdale's a nice ground to be fair. It's a good size and much to the delight of the Preston fans I spoke to, it looked in better shape than Ewood Park down the road in my opinion. The Football Museum is in a bit of a state and speaking to mates and also staff at PNE they seem very frustrated at its' departure, which is understandable, but seem reluctant to see it knocked down. Once inside the ground, it's pretty decent. There are two big, nice looking stands to the right and directly across from the visiting stand and the Invincibles Stand to our left was hardly a let down, it simply needs the area above the stand sorting out and it'll be sound as a pound.

Wednesday's dominance throughout paid off and goals from Danny Batth and Ben Marshall before half time set the tone for a comfortable, 2-0 Wednesday win. Preston were very poor throughout though and I think this contributed hugely to the dour atmosphere in the ground. It's been a long time since I've seen a side play so negatively, so to think that Preston fans watch that every week is sobering! Saying that, the three points are all that mattered for Wednesday and we went back to Yorkshire happy bunnies, eagerly awaiting what 2012 has in store for our club. Stewards were fine, the toilets were big and clean which is a huge bonus as not all football grounds have this 'luxury' and the food was good enough. The stand is steep though and I echo other reports which state that it can be a bit dis-orientating for people who aren't fond of heights as, even though the stand isn't huge, you're more or less on top of the pitch.

Getting back to Preston Station was simple enough although without the help of the people we knew I can envisage it being a potential problem as it's a fair way away. I'd recommend getting some directions before the game and keep asking people around you - the home fans were all very friendly (even if the young ones were incredibly 'chavvish'!) and I'm sure would help you out. Once there, simple enough getting home although you do pass Bolton's ground on the way home and if they're at home as well as Preston I predict that the train may very well get full so prepare yourself. Thankfully for us they kicked off later on in the day so we survived.

All in all a good day out at Preston. The ground isn't the most accessible and, using the train, Preston itself wasn't exactly perfect to find but the fact that Wednesday played very well and Deepdale is a good stadium with bags of character means it's a trip worth making and I'd jump at the opportunity to visit the ground again in the future, though hopefully in a higher league as I think the Preston fans deserve it. They turned out in force to see a woeful performance and even though I'd rather it be them than us, I'd still like to see them start picking up. Good ground, I'd certainly recommend it, just drive there!

Preston North End v Exeter City
League One
Saturday, August 20th 2011, 3pm
Steve Ellis (Exeter City fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game?
 
I was looking forward to this game since the fixtures came out. It is a stadium I had never been to and being an Exeter supporter not one you would think you would ever go to! Plus it was to be the first real test of the season.
 
How easy was the journey, Home fans friendly, what did you do before the game?
 
The journey itself was very easy leaving Exeter at 7.30am on the supporters coach and arriving just before 1pm. On arriving I waited along side Exeter fans and Preston fans for the Exeter team to arrive. The home fans were friendly and easy to talk with. Before the match I took a walk round the stadium having a look at the main entrance and also the statue of the great Tom Finney, known as 'the splash'.  Once through the turnstiles I went pitchside in order to have a proper look and take pictures of the legends that are printed in the seats before the ground started filling up, I then returned to the bar on the concourse and watched the end of the live Sky Sports game.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground? and inside?
 
As we arrived the ground was tucked in behind houses but as we left the coach it is easy to see how much work has gone into modernising, as all four sides looked new. The away end looked quite steep so if your not that good with heights dont go to near the top but no matter where you sit you have good leg Room and superb views. The other stands pretty much the same.

The game itself was a 1-0 defeat for Exeter with Preston scoring just before half time and Exeter going down to 10 men during that first half, our keeper doing his best to keep us in the game with a few good saves, but with 10 men Exeter seemed to be the better team in the second half.

The atmosphere during the game was excellent, refreshments were a good range of food and non alcoholic and alcoholic drinks all at usual sort of prices or meal deals for £4.50. The stewards were very friendly  and helpful and stayed out of the way and taking time to chat with the visiting supporters and offering to take pictures for supporters. The toilets were also clean.
 
Comment on getting away after the game:
 
Getting away after was fairly easy, just a slow journey back to the motorway but when there it was an easy journey home. arriving just after 10pm. Despite the result it was a fantastic day out.

Preston North End v Everton
Pre-season friendly
Saturday, July 24th 2010, 3pm
Bobby Rooney (Everton fan)

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

If I'm being honest, I didn't even know I was going to the match until about Midday, when I got shuffled in a car and down to the local Train Station. I was looking forward to going to Deepdale as I enjoyed going last time I went in 2001, and hadn't been since it's completion of the new 'Invincibles' Stand. So it was a game I was looking forward to!

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

Oh it was really easy, As I live a mere 45 minute train journey away, I got the train to Preston for £3.55 (as a student, £5.10 for an Adult) which was a real bargain and it took 35 minutes or so.

When I went to Preston last time, we drove and were fairly close to the stadium using street parking for free, but this time I had gone from the station and I asked the Police officer at the station for directions, which made it straight forward; on leaving the station, turn right and stay straight until reaching the prison, and then turn right and the stadium was straight ahead. The journey took about 25 minutes, so if your a bit lazy or simply can't do it cabs and buses regularly run to near the stadium.There seemed to be a lot of street parking, and having walked 25 minutes to the station, I saw a few car parks charging £3-5.

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

I just stopped at the Subway in the town centre, but I walked past plenty of pubs, although some weren't away friendly. There were plenty of food outlets too. The Home fans were really friendly actually, really helpful so was a pleasant change.

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

Same old Deepdale really. Looks like a typical Modern North West Stadium, with the exception of the Football Museum, which I would recommend visiting, as I think it's brilliant (Ed - unfortunately the museum has now closed). The Concourse I felt was a little compact, and with only half an end given most of the time, I could see it becoming quite congested down there for a team who are well supported. I like the stadium, I like the features in it, and due to the steep shape, seeing the match is no problem at all and offers great views, even if a little high, not one for the weak legged!

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

I must admit, I actually did enjoy the game, Everton walked the game and probably deserved more than a 3-0 win. Preston looked poor, but a pre-season game means nothing really! Had a good bit of banter with the small group of about 40-100 Preston fans in the corner of their stand. Stewards seemed fairly good, they stopped a few idiots running on the pitch and were generally jokey and relaxed. I didn't use the toilets or make use of the food either, but I was told pints of lager were £2.80, so not all bad.

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

Really easy, as I was walking so there was no queues for me, there were traffic jams around the stadium though. Due to it being just a single carriageway, it's understandable, I'd recommend, parking just a bit further down from the stadium, and it'll ensure an easy get away.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I enjoyed it! Saw a promising performance for the new season and got to see the Blues win, always a good thing. I liked Deepdale, but fans who aren't fans of stadiums like Bolton, Blackburn and Wigan, mightn't quite like it, a good touch with their heroes faces in the stand, I think that's great! I look forward to returning next year!

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

* The ground was opened in 1875 as an athletics, rugby and cricket ground. Football was first played later on the site in 1880.

Updated 21st June 2020

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