Address: Mold Road,
Wrexham County Borough,
Capacity: 10,500 (All-Seater) (Maximum capacity of over 15,000 reduced for safety reasons)
A truly historic football ground that for now is only in use on three sides.
The fifth largest stadium in Wales, it is the oldest football stadium in the world that still hosts International matches, with its first coming way back in 1877.
The site dates back to the early 19th century but was first opened in football use in 1864 when it became home to Wrexham Association Football Club who were founded that same year. Originally used for cricket and horse racing, Wrexham have played home games for every season except 1881-82 and 1882-83 when they were forced to play at the Recreation Ground at Rhosddu following an increase in the rent.
There have been multiple renovations to the Racecourse Ground in the more than 150 years since opening, and they have collectively formed the stadium that is in place today.
More than 90 Welsh International fixtures have been held at the Racecourse Ground since the first in 1877, and selected fixtures continue to be played at the stadium to this day.
Rugby league club the North Wales Crusaders played at the ground between their birth in 2012 and 2016.
Rugby World Cup fixtures have also been played at the stadium in 2000 and 2013.
Location and Getting There
The Racecourse Ground is located right next to Wrexham Glyndwr University, well within 0.5 miles of Wrexham Town Centre. Acton Park is around one mile away to the northeast, Erddig Park is around 1.4 miles away to the south, and Wrexham Maelor Hospital is around 0.4 miles away to the southwest.
Coming to the Racecourse Ground by car is certainly possible.
Wrexham recommend using the Glyndwr University campus car park (usually £3 per vehicle) which is a very short distance away from the ground. Other private car parks are available nearby.
Free street parking is available to be had within close range of the stadium should you arrive early enough (more than one hour before kick-off typically). Ensure that you are legally allowed to park where you find however and do not block the drives of any residents.
Getting to the Racecourse Ground by train can be an even simpler process.
The nearest railway station is Wrexham General to the southeast, served by Transport for Wales and Avanti West Coast. The station is a 5-10 minute walk away, going along a route that leaves Station Approach and heads northwest up Regent Street (A541) which leads onto Mold Road outside the stadium.
Wrexham Central Station is a little further to the south of Wrexham General, though services are more limited and only by Transport for Wales.
Wrexham General would be my recommendation for reaching the ground by train.
Outside the Stadium
Heading to the Racecourse Ground via Mold Road brings you to the South Stand, known for sponsorship reasons as the Hays Travel Stand and otherwise known as the Mold Road Stand.
The stadium’s southeast corner houses a pub called ‘The Turf’ which does welcome away fans but only in small numbers.
Further along here is the rather modern-looking exterior of the Mold Road Stand, using a brickwork base with large silver panels and rows of glass windows higher up and a cantilever roof on top. There are brick towers at the end of this exterior, which then lead onto the curved ends of the stand, one of which is blocked from view by ‘The Turf’ in front of it. The brick tower near the southwest corner houses the entrance to the 1864 Suite, Altitude Suite, Executive Boxes, 1864 Ticket Office, and access to Disabled Platforms.
To the left of here are turnstiles for the Mold Road Stand itself.
Heading round in a clockwise direction, past a small fenced-off car park, brings you to the West Stand. It is known for sponsorship reasons as the WREXRENT Stand but is otherwise known as the University End as Wrexham Glyndwr University is out beyond it.
Accessed via a footpath off Mold Road, its exterior uses a brickwork base with silver corrugated iron higher up and a strip of translucent panels at the top. This stand houses Jonesey’s Bar inside and has an entrance to an education suite next to the northwest corner.
Turnstiles for the University End are spread along the stand’s base, though there is also a red fence in place part way along that sometimes restricts access from one end of the stand to the other.
The University car park is immediately outside the University End, on the other side of a fence and row of tall trees.
The North Stand at the Racecourse Ground is known for sponsorship reasons as the bkoncepts Stand, but is otherwise known as the Yale Stand as Yale College used to be based outside of it.
The stand’s base contains a number of different shaped buildings along it, with corrugated iron in place higher up. The buildings hold numerous Club Offices including the Wrexham Club Shop, Main Ticket Office, and entrances to the Centenary Club, Bamford Suite and Executive Boxes.
Turnstiles for the Yale Stand are in place along the base, with the turnstiles near to the stadium’s northwest corner being in use for away supporters.
The large buildings outside part of the Yale Stands are nowadays used for student accommodation.
The East Stand at the Racecourse Ground is known as the Kop. Sharing its name with several others stands at stadiums in the UK, its name references the Battle of Spion Kop between British forces and two Boer Republics in January 1900. Spion Kop itself is the mountain in South Africa that the battle was fought on.
The Spion Kop in its heyday was a standing terrace that could hold around 9,000 people, making it the largest in the English Football League at the time. Developments in stadium safety requirements mean that the Kop is not in use on matchdays, and won’t be until major work has been conducted on it.
You can still make out the roof of its exterior clearly, but access up to it is very limited as there is trees, grass and a perimeter wall around it.
Turnstiles for it, down by the stadium’s southwest corner, are still in place today but not in use. You can often that there are cars parking right in front of it.
If you are outside the Yale Stand, you can get around the Kop by heading past the student accommodation buildings, heading south along Crispin Lane, and then turning right which puts you back on Mold Road and over to the Mold Road Stand.
Inside the Stadium
The Mold Road Stand has an interesting shape to it.
It is a single tier of red seating which has the letters WREXHAM spelt out in white across the central blocks. The letter X is also noticeably larger than the rest and split across two seating blocks.
The entire seating area is taller in the middle than it is at the ends, and this is reflected in the stand’s roof which suddenly jumps up in the middle to accommodate the extra facilities underneath. These facilities include executive boxes, the 1864 Suite, Altitude Suite, executive seating, and the gantry holding the matchday camera.
Your view from anywhere inside the Mold Road Stand is perfectly clear because of the stand’s cantilever roof above.
Windshields are in place at either end, but they only provide full protection to the rows further back. The rows further forward have small walls in place to offer protection instead. Transparent panels are also in place at the points where the roof jumps up towards the middle.
The University End is divided into two tiers of red seating.
A lot of these seats look worn however and there are much newer-looking seats in the blocks at either of the lower tier. There is an electronic scoreboard hanging down from a metal frame attached to the roof, and this screen can best be seen by those at the opposite end of the stadium.
Your view from anywhere inside the lower tier is perfectly clear, but two supporting pillars at the front of the upper tier can restrict the view for those sat behind or near to them. Clearer views are likely to come from being in the seats right at either end of the upper tier or by being in the very front row in between each pillar.
Large windshields at either end protect every row inside the upper tier, but there is less protection for those in the lower tier. A wall by the stadium’s southwest corner offers a decent level of protection, but the opposite end of the lower tier does not have a wall in place.
The Yale Stand is divided into two tiers.
Every seat in the lower tier is coloured red, whereas it is only the inner blocks of the upper tier that are coloured red, with the outer blocks coloured blue. The red seating blocks in the upper tier include executive seating and the directors’ seating block, walled off from the seats around and behind them.
The Racecourse Ground’s dugouts are built into the lower tier beneath, with the tunnel located left of centre and the changing rooms located inside the stand.
Your view from anywhere inside the lower tier is perfectly clear, but there are two supporting pillars in place along the front of the upper tier. These pillars are well spaced out however, being based at either end of the red seating blocks. Your view is likely to be restricted if you are sat in the seats behind or near to them, but they should not get in your way at all if you are sat right at either end of the upper tier or right along the front row in the space between each pillar.
Windshields at either end provide full protection to every row in the upper tier, but both ends of the lower tier are left much more open and exposed. The Racecourse Ground’s Control Box in the northwest corner can help slightly with protection from the wind on this side.
The Kop is a giant bank of standing terrace that swings round to include the stadium’s northeast corner.
Multiple rows of metal bars run across the terraced area for fans to lean on. These bars are coloured predominantly red, but are also coloured white at the edge of each marked-out staircase.
A roof at the back of the stand hangs overhead, but only provides cover to the rows further back, with the terraced area down the front and in the northeast corner being left uncovered.
Three supporting pillars come down along the front of the Kop’s roof, which would restrict the view for anyone stood up towards the back of the stand. Views would be clear down at the front of in the northeast corner.
Developments in stadium safety requirements mean that the Kop is not in use on matchdays, and won’t be until major work has been conducted on it. It can still make for an impressive sight though and I’m sure it would have looked even better when full to the brim with fans many years ago.
Away fans are housed along the length of the pitch in the Yale Stand, typically taking up the upper tier blocks that are next to the stadium’s northwest corner. These blocks are blue in colour, with most offering a clear view of the pitch, although the ones more inward can have their view slightly restricted by a supporting pillar to one side.
A windshield by the northwest corner fully protects this away section.
To aid with segregation, Wrexham have been known to leave the blocks in the bottom tier below the away section closed, and to also close the lower tier in the adjacent University End. These are only opened up again when a very high attendance is expected at the Racecourse Ground, and it can have an impact on the atmosphere as a result.
The away section at the Racecourse Ground is of a decent quality regardless.
Pubs available to supporters on a matchday include:
-The Centenary Club outside the Yale Stand (Away Supporters Welcome)
-The Turf outside the Mold Road Stand (Popular with Home Supporters, Away Supporters Welcome in Small Numbers)
-The Golden Lion (12 High Street, LL13 8HP (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Located near Wrexham Town Centre and Wrexham Central Station)
-The Horse and Jockey (32 Hope Street, LL11 1BG) (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Located near Wrexham Town Centre and Wrexham Central Station)
-The Long Pull (5 Chester Street, LL13 8BD) (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Located near Wrexham Town Centre and Wrexham Central Station)
-The North and South Wales Bank (14 High Street, LL13 8HP) (A JD Wetherspoon Pub, Home Supporters Only)
-The Plas Coch (Plas Coch Road, LL11 2BW) (Popular with Away Supporters) (Located north of the Racecourse Ground near the Plas Coch Retail Park)
-The Welch Fusilier (40 Chester Street, LL13 8AH) (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Located near Wrexham Town Centre and Wrexham Central Station)
The Racecourse Ground is a truly historic venue.
Still holding International fixtures nearly 150 years after its first, it is currently a stadium that has an interestingly-shaped South Stand, two-tiered West and North Stands, and a giant banked Kop that is an impressive sight, but out of use under current safety regulations.
Talks have been going for many years about finally converting the Kop into a modern, all-seater stand.
That could well take the Racecourse Ground to another level when complete.