31,367 (all seated)
Address: Blackburn, Lancashire, BB2 4JF
Telephone: 01254 372 001
Fax: 01254 671 042
Ticket Office: 01254 372 000
Pitch Size: 115 x 76 yards
Pitch Type: Grass
Club Nickname: Rovers
Year Ground Opened: 1890
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Shirt Sponsors: 10Bet
Home Kit: Cambridge Blue and White
Away Kit: White, Grey and Green
Ewood Park is rather impressive, having had three new large stands built during the 1990’s. These stands are at both ends and at one side of the ground. They are of the same height and of roughly similar design, being two-tiered, having a row of executive boxes and similar roofs. The ends are particularly good looking, both having large lower tiers. The only downside is the open corners, although there is a huge screen at one corner by the away end, which shows an excellent pre-match programme and amongst other things, the teams emerging from the dressing rooms and onto the pitch. There is also an electric scoreboard at the Bryan Douglas Darwen End of the ground.
The RFS Riverside Stand is the only undeveloped stand, running down one side of the pitch. This is a smaller single tiered stand and is not as pleasing to the eye as its more modern counterparts. In fact, it looks older than what it is having been opened in 1988. It contains a fair number of supporting pillars and is partly covered (to the rear). Just to highlight how much the ground has changed, this was at one time the ‘best’ stand at Ewood Park. One other interesting feature of the ground is the fact that the pitch is raised. This means that players have to run up a small incline, whilst taking throw-ins and corners. Outside the stadium behind the Ronnie Clayton Blackburn End, there is a statue of former club owner Jack Walker.
It would be a lie to suggest that Blackburn’s Ewood Park will be undergoing a complete revamp but regulars there will notice some improvements that are due to go ahead. The club have earmarked £2m for pitch alterations. These changes will be a switch to a combination of synthetic and natural grass, which enables more playing time. The remainder of the funds will go towards a new air-conditioning and heating system to improve the fan experience. Plans are also in the works for a refresh of the training grounds.
Away fans are housed in the Bryan Douglas Darwen End, where the facilities provided are good. However, the spacing between the rows of seats leaves a lot to be desired, being quite tight. The Darwen End is shared with home supporters, but if demand requires it the whole of the stand can be made available. Normally the away allocation is for three-quarters of the stand, at just under 4,000 tickets, which are split between the whole of the upper tier and part of the lower tier (with the lower tier being allocated first). If you have not bought a ticket in advance, then you need to buy one from the away supporters ticket office at the ground as you can’t pay on the turnstiles. The ticket office is located on the corner of the Darwen End & the Jack Walker Stand.
On the concourse, the food available includes; a range of Holland’s Pies (Chicken Balti, Peppered Steak, Potato and Meat, Cheese and Onion all £3), Sausage Rolls (£2.50), Cheeseburgers (£3.80), Burgers (£3.30), Hot Dogs (£3.50) and Chips (£2). The refreshment areas are opened 90 minutes before kick off and close 15 minutes into the second half. If you are looking to eat something prior to entering the ground, Leaver’s Bakers Shop on Bolton Road selling excellent hot pies. Across the Bolton Road by the home end is a McDonalds, which I noticed had a walk through service for fans! I found the Blackburn fans both friendly and helpful, plus coupled with the relaxed stewarding, has made it so far for me, five pleasant visits to Ewood Park.
Blackburn’s first games were played on a farmland at Oozehead from 1875, this field belonged to a local farmer. As a matter of fact, Oozehead ground was also used for cattle grazing so was very much a working farm even between games. Rovers moved to Pleasington cricket ground in 1877 because Oozehead was not exactly ideal for playing football. The stay at Pleasington lasted not even a year; a Preston North End player died of a heart attack during a match and the club opted to move again. Blackburn adopted a couple of places as their home, before they finally settled at Ewood Park in 1890.
Now, Ewood Park has been the Rovers’ home for 131 years up to the present time. Minor changes and modernisations were made over the years as you’d expect but 1984 brought about large scale changes with a fire in the Nutall Street stand forced their hand somewhat. The biggest changes undoubtedly came to Ewood Park in the nineties though with the Blackburn ground seeing a complete reconstruction when new owners arrived.
Most notable was the switch to a fully seated stadium with the seating reduced from over 70,000 to just over 31,000. The new look Blackburn stadium officially reopened in 1995 after a couple years of construction.
Behind the Bryan Douglas Darwen End, the Club have created a fan zone area, into which away fans are admitted. It has some large screens showing previous meetings between the two sides and more importantly food and drink outlets, where you can buy a ‘Pie and a Pint’ for £4.90. The closest pub to Ewood Park that away supporters can use is the Fernhurst pub on Bolton Road, which is only a five minute walk from the visitors turnstiles. Now part of the Hungry Horse chain, it quickly fills up on matchdays and once full no further fans are allowed entry until people leave. However please note that in keeping with the ‘families atmosphere’ of the pub, fans are asked to refrain from singing. Ben King a visiting Ipswich Town fan adds; ‘You can also park your car at the Hungry Horse for £5’. John Chadbourne a visiting Nottingham Forest supporter recommends Uncle Jacks on Branch Road; ‘It welcomes away fans, has an excellent selection of beers, including cask ales. It is only a ten minute walk from Ewood Park’.
There is the Golden Cup pub which is further on past the Fernhurst (going away from the ground) on Bolton Road and is tucked in by the motorway bridge. However this Thwaites pub is quite small, gets rather crowded and it is a good 20 minute walk (and mostly uphill) from Ewood Park. It is friendly though and also offers a range of pies. You can also park at the pub for a cost of £5. If you have a bit of time on your hands and you like your real ale then Robert Bury suggests; ‘The Black Bull pub at the top of Bog Height Road (this is the road next to the Golden Cup and the Black Bull pub is located one mile up this road on the left) is home to the Three B’s Brewery and has up to eight ales on tap. You can also enjoy great views over the surrounding countryside and Blackburn from its elevated position.’ On the other side of the M65 motorway on Blackburn Road but going in the opposite direction to Ewood Park towards Darwen, is the Anchor Hotel, which is also frequented by away fans.
Just around the corner from the entrance to Blackburn Railway Station is a Wetherspoons outlet called the Postal Order. Alcohol is also served within the ground in the form of; Heineken (£4 bottle), John Smith’s (£4 pint), Strongbow Dark Fruits Cider (£4.30 bottle) and Wine (£4 small bottle). The Club offers two pints of lager for £7.70. You can even have them served in a two-pint pot!
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From The North
Use Motorway M6 to junction 30, to the M61 – leave junction 9 then onto the M65 towards Blackburn – leave the M65 at Junction 4 (A666) and follow signs towards Blackburn/darwen. Ewood Park is about one mile down the road on the right hand side.
From The South
Use Motorway M6 to junction 29, then onto the M65 towards Blackburn – leave the M65 at Junction 4 (A666) and follow signs towards Blackburn. Turn right at the first set of traffic lights and Ewood Park is about 1 mile down the road on the right hand side.
From The East
Use Motorway M62 onto M66/A56, then onto the M65, head towards Blackburn – leave the M65 at Junction 4 (A666) and follow signs towards Blackburn. Turn right at the first set of traffic lights and Ewood Park is about 1 mile down the road on the right hand side.
Various private car parks are available in the area around Ewood Park (especially along Branch Road), costing in the region of £5. The nearby Hungry Horse pub also offers matchday parking at the same price. If you want to get away reasonably quickly after the game (the roads immediately around Ewood Park are closed off for crowd safety for around 30 minutes after the game) then as you come down the hill on the A666, you will pass a Esso Petrol Garage on your left. Turn right at the next traffic lights into Branch Road and down on your left there are some industrial units offering matchday parking. After the game turn left out of the car parks so that you are going away from Ewood, turn right at the second mini roundabout and this will take you back up to the M65.
The closest railway station is Mill Hill which is around a 15 minute walk away from Ewood Park. It is served by trains from Blackburn and the journey only takes a few minutes. Blackburn station itself is at least a couple of miles from the ground and hence a good 25-30 minute walk away. Blackburn station is served by trains from Manchester & Leeds.
Tony Durkin adds; ‘The main doors to the railway station face the bus station, from where you can take a either a Number 1, 3 or 225 bus (the latter goes from Stand N) bus to Ewood. To walk it to the ground instead, turn left at those main doors and go straight on towards Darwen Street. Turn left and you will reach a major junction over which runs a railway bridge (Darwen Street Bridge), which is impossible to miss. Crossing over the road as soon as you turn left onto Darwen Street will be a help, as when you get to the junction you need to follow the road towards Bolton. It is called Great Bolton Street after the bridge and then becomes Bolton Road. Follow this straight along for just over a mile (passing the Infirmary on your left and the canal on the right). After you go under another railway bridge, the ground is down on your left just after you pass the Aqueduct pub (for home fans only)’.
Tony Hughes informs me; ‘Blackburn station is only a three minute ride away from Mill Hill. On arriving at Mill Hill walk up the steps from the platform and turn left onto New Chapel Street. Continue along New Chapel Street passing a shopping area and park. With the Spar supermarket on the opposite side of the road from you, turn left into New Wellington Street. Continue down New Wellington Street until you come to a small bridge that crosses over the Leeds Liverpool canal. You are now on Albion Street there is a large mill building on the left and a small school on the right. Walk along Albion Street to the end, and you will find yourself on Livesey Branch Road. Turn Left onto this road, and you will be able to see the football stadium in front of you at the foot of the hill’.
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:
Like a number of Clubs, Blackburn operate a match category policy (A+, A & B) whereby the ticket prices cost more for the most popular games. Category A+ prices are shown below with A & B in brackets:
Jack Walker Stand (Centre): Adults £39 (A £31) (B £27) OAP’s/Students £32 (A £27) (B £24), Juniors £17 (A £14) (B £12)
Jack Walker Stand (Wings): Adults £37 (A £29) (B £24) OAP’s/Students £27 (A £19) (B £17), Juniors £14 (A £9) (B £7)
Riverside Stand: Adults £28 (A £22) (B £18) OAP’s/Students £19 (A £14) (B £12), Juniors £14 (A £9) (B £7)
Ronnie Clayton Blackburn End: Adults £34 (A £27) (B £22) OAP’s/Students £24 (A £17) (B £14), Juniors £14 (A £9) (B £7)
Brian Douglas Darwen End: Adults £34 (A £27) (B £22) OAP’s/Students £24 (A £17) (B £14), Juniors £14 (A £9) (B £7)
Bryan Douglas Darwen End:
£34 (A £27) (B £22) OAP’s/Students £24 (A £17) (B £14), Juniors £14 (A £9) (B £7)
Official Programme £3
4000 Holes Fanzine £1
Blackburn vs Burnley rivalry: This grudge match is largely born out of the fact these two sides are the big boys of East Lancashire. It’s more than that though with the East Lancashire derby being one of the oldest rivalries in English football with both teams amongst the 12 founder members of the Football League way back in 1888.
Blackburn vs Preston rivalry: Although not as fierce as the East Lancashire derby, the Riversiders do not like Preston; Just like the Burnley rivalry, this is older than the Football League itself, as Preston won the first English championship. As a matter of fact, one of Preston’s players died of a heart attack while playing against Blackburn.
Blackburn vs Bolton rivalry: With just under 17 miles separating these two cities, this is another old rivalry; These sides have played against each other in over 150 league games over the years.
For details of disabled facilities and club contact at the ground please visit the relevant page on the Level Playing Field website.
62,522 v Bolton Wanderers
FA Cup 6th Round, 2nd March 1929.
Modern All Seated Attendance Record:
30,895 v Liverpool
Premier League, 24th February 1996.
2019-2020: 13,873 (Championship League)
2018-2019: 14,550 (Championship League)
2017-2018: 12,832 (League One)