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Address: Livingstone Road,
Capacity: 5,450 (3,100 Seated) (Currently Undergoing Renovation Work)
A small ground that’s home to a very likeable football club. The Crown Ground certainly dwarfs others nearby in terms of size but there’s a real charm to the place that you just can't get elsewhere.
Known as the Wham Stadium for sponsorship reasons, the Crown Ground has been the home of Accrington Stanley Football Club since its construction in 1968.
Stanley were formed that same year following the collapse of the original Accrington Stanley two years previously. They had been a part of English football since 1891.
Location and Getting There
The Crown Ground is located off of Livingstone Road, around one mile north of Accrington Town Centre.
Given its small size and location within a large residential area, free parking is certainly possible to find, usually within close distance of the ground as well.
Accrington also offer parking in a gravelled area alongside two football pitches which are near to its western side. The club obviously charge people however to park their vehicles here.
Accrington Station is close to the Town Centre and around 20-25 minutes walk south of the Crown Ground, mostly along Whalley Road (A680).
Outside the Ground
There’s only one entrance into the Crown Ground, that being along Livingstone Road and down near the southwest corner..
Walking along that path will lead you to the South Stand, named in memory of Jack Barrett, an Accrington Stanley stalwart who helped to save the club back in the 1960s.
The exterior of the stand is currently undergoing major renovation work so information at this stage remains limited.
Out beyond the Jack Barrett Memorial Stand is a small area for parking, but stewards will normally guide vehicles over to the gravel spaces further down Livingstone Road instead.
Continuing round in a clockwise direction brings you to the West Stand, which is known as the Clayton End.
Its exterior design shared similarities with the Jack Barrett Memorial Stand prior to renovation.
Fans enter through the turnstiles which are detached from the stand itself and are kept in a fenced-off outer concourse before going inside to the seating area.
There is a maze of red bars on top of the Clayton End's roof holding it up, and out beyond the stand is a large car park.
The North Stand is known as the Eric Whalley Stand after the club’s late chairman and owner.
Previously a much smaller stand called the Whinney Hill Terrace, the northern side of the football ground was originally made up of standing terrace and that was converted into a few rows of seating ahead of Accrington’s move into the Football League.
The newly developed Eric Whalley Stand was opened in 2018.
The east side of the Crown Ground is known as the Coppice End.
It has easily the most unappealing exterior of any stand at the football ground, with the naked underbelly of the terrace above being the only thing fans can see as they come from the detached turnstiles.
There are a couple of food stalls out the back of the stand for supporters to congregate around before making their way round to the terraced area.
Inside the Ground
The Jack Barrett Memorial Stand currently being rebuilt and information on its new look is limited at this stage. More detail will be provided on this side of the Crown Ground in due course.
The Clayton End is single-tiered, consisting of a split of both seating and standing terrace, with a few rows of red seating down the front and the terrace behind it. The letters ASFC are spelt out in white amongst the seating blocks, and there are metal bars running across a couple of rows in the terraced area which fans can lean on.
There are no supporting pillars coming down from the roof and so your view from anywhere in the Clayton End, whether that be either seating or standing, is perfectly clear.
The Eric Whalley Stand is a single-tiered all-seater stand that is almost as tall as the adjacent Clayton End The letters STANLEY are spelt out in white across the central blocks.
There are no supporting pillars coming down and so your view from inside is perfectly clear.
Like the adjacent Clayton End, there are no windshields at either end that protect the wind or rain from entering through the sides. The reason for this is because fans have to enter these stands through either side from the concourses outside.
The Coppice End is clearly the worst stand in the stadium.
It is the only stand consisting entirely of standing terrace and has no roof over its head. The front two thirds of the stand has a concrete floor whilst at the back it is made out of metal.
Anybody stood amongst the rows of terracing will be exposed to the elements during the game.
In the northeast corner between the Eric Whalley Stand and the Coppice End is a large electronic scoreboard. It can be seen by the vast majority of fans in the ground.
Away fans are typically housed behind the goal in the Coppice End, meaning that visiting supporters have to watch the game without a roof over their heads to protect them from the elements.
Accrington may offer a couple of blocks in the Eric Whalley Stand when away crowds are particularly larger, and on occasions when the away following is very small, the Coppice End is closed altogether and the travelling fans are housed in one end of the Eric Whalley Stand.
Pubs available to supporters on a matchday include:
-The Crown (318 Whalley Road, BB5 5DQ) (Home and Away Supporters) (Located very close to the Crown Ground)
-Grants Bar (1 Manchester Road, BB5 2BQ) (Typically Home and Away Supporters) (Located a fair distance from the Crown Ground itself)
-The Grey Horse Hotel (263 Whalley Road, BB5 5AD) (Home and Away Supporters)
-The Railway (84-86 Blackburn Road, BB5 1LL) (Home and Away Supporters) (Located near to Accrington Station)
The Crown Ground is very small when compared to others in the northwest of England, but that shouldn’t be something that puts you off coming here.
Sure, most away fans have to make do without a roof over their head, but the rest of the ground is practical and the view from any seat is great. Work on the southern side of the ground is all part of the club's plans to further expand this Football League venue.
If you’re not a sticker for big stands and high views, this is a very nice football ground to watch a game at. Just make sure to bring your coat.
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