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Address: Bloomfield Road,
Capacity: 17,338 (All-Seater)
There are a number of buildings that stand out on the Blackpool skyline and Bloomfield Road, with its bright exterior and cantilever roof, is certainly one of them.
Opened in 1899, it has been the permanent home of Blackpool Football Club since 1901.
The Tangerines had originally played at Raikes Hall Gardens, which has become housing, and the Athletic Grounds, which is now the present-day Stanley Park.
Bloomfield Road was first known as The Gamble’s Field and was originally the home of South Shore Football Club, who merged with Blackpool in December 1899.
Bloomfield Road took its name from the street which runs outside its South Stand soon after.
Location and Getting There
Bloomfield Road is located around one mile southwest of Blackpool Town Centre, and less than 0.5 miles west of the Fylde Coast. Blackpool Tower is around one mile to the north, and Blackpool Pleasure Beach is around one mile to the south.
It’s certainly possible to get to Bloomfield Road by car, and whilst there are car parking spaces around the stadium’s exterior, it should also be possible to find free parking on one of the streets nearby.
The nearest train station to the ground is Blackpool South, less than 10 minutes walk to the south.
Blackpool North is much further away and walking from here to the stadium can take over 30 minutes.
Outside the Stadium
Coming from Blackpool South Station will first bring you to the stadium’s South Stand, which is named after Jimmy Armfield.
Born in Greater Manchester on 21st September 1935, Armfield was a right-back who spent his entire career playing for Blackpool. He would make 627 appearances for the club between 1954 and 1971, additionally being part of the England squad which won the 1966 FIFA World Cup on home soil.
Capped 43 times by his country, Armfield passed away on 22nd January 2018 at the age of 82. The South Stand at Bloomfield Road has been named after him since opening in March 2010.
The Jimmy Armfield South Stand’s exterior looks like an office block, made up mostly of large panels with rows of glass windows running all the way across. There is brickwork at the base and a cantilever roof up at the very top.
Blackpool’s Club Shop and Main Ticket Office is housed in the middle of this stand, whilst the Blackpool Football Club Hotel is attached to the stadium right in the southeast corner. The Jimmy Armfield South Stand also holds a gym, spa and small church, whilst the southwest corner is the home of The Gateway Centre, part of the NHS and not accessible to fans.
There’s a statue of Jimmy Armfield positioned on the corner between Bloomfield Road and Seasiders Way.
Continuing round in a clockwise direction brings you to the West Stand, named after Sir Stanley Matthews.
Born in Stoke-on-Trent on 1st February 1915, Matthews played for Blackpool between 1947 and 1961, making nearly 430 appearances. He was part of three FA Cup Finals, the most famous being dubbed the “Matthews Final” in 1953, which his side won 4-3 against Bolton Wanderers. Matthews is regarded as one of England’s greatest ever footballers and also famously played until the age of 50.
Capped 54 times by England, scoring 11 goals, Sir Stanley Matthews passed away on 23rd February 2000 at the age of 85.
The Sir Stanley Matthews West Stand follows a very similar exterior design to the adjacent Jimmy Armfield South Stand, with large panels along its upper levels, brickwork at the base, and a cantilever roof up along the very top. Blackpool’s Main Reception is located right in the middle, and there is a road running right underneath the stand’s exterior which coaches head along before pulling up next to the Players' Entrance nearby.
Out beyond the stand on the opposite side of Seasiders Way the largest of the club’s car parks.
The North-West Stand joins both the northern and western sides of the stadium together.
It follows the same design as both the Sir Stanley Matthews West Stand and the Jimmy Armfield South Stand, using panelling in the upper levels, brickwork at the base, and the cantilever roof up above.
In 2009, Blackpool supporters raised money for a memorial plaque dedicated to Kevin Olsson, who was fatally stabbed during a match at Bloomfield Road in 1974. You can find this plaque along the base of the North-West corner.
The North Stand is named after Stan Mortensen.
Born in South Shields on 26th May 1921, Mortensen was a centre-forward who joined Blackpool in 1941, going on to play more than 350 times for the club and score over 220 goals. Another Blackpool legend, he played in the same 1953 FA Cup final as Sir Stanley Matthews. Many argue the game dubbed the “Matthews Final” should instead be named after Mortensen, who scored a hat-trick in that 4-3 win over Bolton Wanderers. He remains the only ever player to score a hat-trick in a Wembley FA Cup Final.
Capped 25 times by England, scoring 23 goals, Mortensen passed away on 22nd May 1991 at the age of 69.
The Stan Mortensen North Stand itself maintains the same exterior design as the western and southern sides of Bloomfield Road, and has two companies located inside of it. One is the Health and Social Services Centre for the local area, with a Ticket Collection Box right outside of the front door, and the other being Safehands, a local nursery.
Turnstiles into this stand can be found in the open northeast corner.
Out beyond the Stan Mortensen North Stand is another of the stadium’s car parks and a statue of Mortensen. The plaque underneath this statue simply reads “Morty”.
The East Stand is the smallest of the main four at Bloomfield Road and has a noticeably lower roof than the rest of the stadium.
You can walk along the back of it down a narrow street right outside, but the turnstiles that get you into the stand itself are at either end, with the away ones being in the open northeast corner and the home ones being next to the Blackpool Football Club Hotel.
Inside the Stadium
The Jimmy Armfield South Stand is made up of a single tier of orange seats, with a row of executive boxes out beyond the back of this. The letters ARMFIELD are spelt out using white seats, with a sliver of black seating used to give each letter a 3D effect.
Both the southeast and southwest corners are of a similar height to the Jimmy Armfield South Stand, and with no supporting pillars coming down from the cantilever roof, your view of the pitch is perfectly clear from any seat.
The Sir Stanley Matthews West Stand is a single tier of entirely orange seats. The back row is the same distance up as the southwest and northwest corners, and there is a row of executive boxes up behind here that loops the whole way around.
Blackpool’s executive seats are in the centre of the stand, the directors’ box is in the middle of the very back row, and the boxes to the right of here are part of the Matthews Lounge. Blackpool’s changing rooms, tunnel and dugouts can also be found down the front of the stand.
There are no supporting pillars coming down from the cantilever roof and so your view of the pitch is perfectly clear from every seat.
The Stan Mortensen North Stand follows a similar design to the Jimmy Armfield South Stand opposite.
It is made up of a single tier of orange seats with the letters B.F.C. spelt out in white across the central blocks, again using a sliver of black seating to give each letter a 3D effect.
There is no row of executive boxes and executive seats behind the backrow like you would find in the South Stand, but with no pillars coming down from the cantilever roof, your view of the action is perfectly clear from any seat inside.
Given Bloomfield Road has an open northeast corner, there is a large windshield at one end of the Stan Mortensen North Stand which completely covers every row from top to bottom, ensuring that every fan inside is protected from any wind or rain coming in.
The East Stand is also single-tiered and made up entirely of orange seats, with no letters spelt out in any of the blocks. Half-way along the stand are the press boxes, positioned above one of the entrances from the concourse.
There are pillars coming down regularly from the roof at the front and so you are likely going to have your view restricted in some way here, unless you are sat on the very front row.
Additionally, there is no windshield on place over by the northeast corner. The wind and rain will come in through here as a result.
Since the 2019-20 season, away fans have been housed in the East Stand.
They used to be sat behind the goal in the Stan Mortensen North Stand, but this has since been changed to prepare for larger Blackpool home crowds.
Depending on the allocation, away fans are given a few blocks of the East Stand next to the southeast corner, whilst the larger away crowds can be given up to two thirds of the East Stand, with large sheets and stewards used to segregate the travelling supporters from the home fans sat in the other blocks.
With supporting pillars running along the front of the East Stand, your view is very likely to be restricted somewhat. The pillars won't restrict your view though if you are based along the very front row.
Pubs available to supporters on a matchday include:
-The Bridge (124 Lytham Road, FY1 6DZ) (Popular with Away Supporters)
-The New Albert Pub and Sports Bar (215 Lytham Road, FY1 6ET) (Typically Home and Away Supporters)
-The Velvet Coaster (501-507 Promenade, FY4 1BA) (A JD Wetherspoon Pub, Typically Home and Away Supporters)
Bloomfield Road is a very nice football ground. Its East Stand may be the smallest and the only one that doesn’t guarantee a clear view from your seat, but that shouldn’t take away from the other three sides of the stadium which are superb.
If you’re coming here for the first time as an away fan, you may admittedly find that this will not be one of your favourites because of the seat you will likely get. If you are coming as a neural or a home supporter though, it’s a different story.
Certainly worth visiting the Fylde Coast for this.
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