Wednesday, 12 Jun 2024

McDiarmid Park: The Home of St Johnstone Football Club

St Johnstone Football Club, also known as “The Saints,” has a rich history that dates back to 1884. Initially, the club played their matches at the Recreation Grounds, a public park located next to the picturesque South Inch and River Tay. However, frequent flooding forced the team to relocate to Muirton Park, on the other side of Perth. For over half a century, Muirton Park was the spiritual home of St Johnstone.

Unfortunately, by the 1980s, Muirton Park had fallen into disrepair, leaving the future of the club uncertain. It was at this moment of crisis that a stroke of luck came their way. Asda, the renowned supermarket giant, expressed an interest in purchasing the land occupied by Muirton Park. In exchange, they proposed to build a new, purpose-built stadium on the west side of the city.

Bruce McDiarmid, a generous farmer, offered sixteen acres of land for the new stadium site, valued at approximately £400,000. Remarkably, McDiarmid refused to accept any payment for his land but was eventually convinced to take a 20% stake in the club and the honorary title of President. The stadium was fittingly named McDiarmid Park in his honor.

Stats

  • Year Opened: 1989
  • Capacity: 10,696
  • Average Attendance: 4,641
  • Record Attendance: 10,696 (St. Johnstone vs Rangers, 1991)
  • Pitch Size: 105 x 68 (7,140)

McDiarmid Park Photos

McDiarmid Park

McDiarmid Park Seating Plan and Where to Sit

McDiarmid Park holds the distinction of being the first all-seater stadium built in the UK following the tragic Hillsborough Disaster. The stadium features four single-tier stands, offering excellent views of the action.

  • North Stand: Located behind one of the goals, usually housing away supporters
  • Ormond Family Stand: Situated opposite the North Stand, providing a family-friendly atmosphere
  • East Stand: Runs along the edge of the pitch
  • West Stand: Considered the main stand, housing the dugouts and the players’ tunnel
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St. Johnstone Ticket Prices

St. Johnstone offers a range of ticket options, with prices varying depending on seating location. Adult tickets are priced between £23.00 and £24.00, while concessions pay £13.00 to £15.00. However, for high-demand matches against top teams like Celtic, Rangers, and Inverness Caledonian Thistle, prices may be slightly higher. For specific pricing details, please refer to the official St. Johnstone website.

How to Get St. Johnstone Tickets

To purchase St. Johnstone tickets, you can visit the ticket office in person or place a phone order.

Getting to McDiarmid Park

Perth, located in the Lowlands of Scotland, is accessible by various means of transport:

  • Train: Traveling from London to Perth takes approximately six hours, with a change in Edinburgh. Once you arrive, the stadium is about a 45-minute walk away, or you can opt for a bus or taxi.
  • Bus: Bus numbers 1 and 2 run from the city center to outside the ground.
  • Car: Depending on your starting point, take the A9 from Glasgow and Inverness, or the A90 and M90 from Edinburgh, Dundee, and Aberdeen. Signage will guide you to the stadium.
  • Air: Dundee Airport, located about twenty minutes away, is the closest airport to Perth. Alternatively, Glasgow and Edinburgh airports are viable options.
  • Taxi: A taxi ride from Perth Railway Station to the stadium takes approximately ten minutes and costs around £10.

Parking Near McDiarmid Park

McDiarmid Park offers ample parking space for up to 1,000 cars on match days. The parking fee is £5 per car.

McDiarmid Park Hotels

Perth may not be the most glamorous destination in Scotland, but it boasts several excellent hotels that provide comfortable accommodation. Here are some top choices:

  • Hotel 1: Description and details
  • Hotel 2: Description and details

Pubs and Bars Near McDiarmid Park

Before the match, why not enjoy a pre-game pint in one of Perth’s finest pubs and bars? Here are some recommended establishments:

  • Pub 1: Description and details
  • Pub 2: Description and details

Facilities

McDiarmid Park offers all the amenities expected of a modern football ground, although it is worth noting that some areas may be showing signs of wear and tear due to its twenty-plus years of existence. Refreshments, including food and beverages, are available before the match and during halftime.

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Prices

  • Programme: £2
  • Pie: £2.10
  • Cup of tea: £2

Hospitality

McDiarmid Park provides three primary hospitality packages:

  1. Premier Hospitality: This package includes a champagne reception, a five-course meal with liqueurs, a halftime buffet, padded seats, and complimentary drinks.
  2. Executive Suite: Similar to the Premier Hospitality package, but with a four-course meal.
  3. Campbell Suite: A more relaxed option, offering a pleasant environment to relax before, during, and after the game. Includes a buffet, refreshments at halftime, and a pay bar facility.

Private Hire

McDiarmid Park features fully-equipped conference suites, making it an ideal venue for business meetings and events. Additionally, the restaurant can be hired for parties. The club is open to hosting various events such as birthday parties, school reunions, weddings, or funeral receptions. For more information or to make arrangements, please contact St. Johnstone directly. Please note that the maximum capacity for private events is 80 people.

Stadium Tours & Museum

Currently, McDiarmid Park does not offer stadium tours or house a museum. Any future developments in this regard will be communicated on the official St. Johnstone website.

About St. Johnstone

St. Johnstone Football Club traces its origins back to 1884 when members of a local cricket team gathered in a public park during the off-season to play football. It was not until the following year that an official meeting was held, formalizing the creation of the club. Over time, St. Johnstone emerged as the most prominent team in the area, surpassing rival clubs such as Fair City Athletic, Caledonian, and Erin Rovers.

Despite their historical dominance, St. Johnstone’s cup success has been elusive. Prior to 2008, their only major honor was winning the Scottish Consolation Cup. However, in 2008, they triumphed in the Scottish Challenge Cup, and in 2014, they secured their first major trophy by defeating local rivals Dundee United to win the Scottish Cup.

McDiarmid Park History

Designed by Percy Johnson-Marshall and constructed by Miller Construction, McDiarmid Park was the first all-seater stadium built in the UK following the Hillsborough Disaster. Lord Justice Taylor, who conducted an inquiry into the tragedy, visited McDiarmid Park to gather insights for the development of future grounds.

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The inaugural match at McDiarmid Park took place between St. Johnstone and Clydebank, resulting in a 2-1 victory for the home team. Though the opening fixture lacked fanfare, plans were underway for an exhibition match featuring a prominent English team to officially inaugurate the stadium. Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson, along with Sir Matt Busby and Bobby Charlton, graced the occasion.

Future Developments

There have been discussions regarding the construction of a new road to connect Perth’s city center with the nearby A9. If this project moves forward, it may involve the demolition of the North Stand to accommodate the road. However, there are currently no immediate plans to execute this development.

FAQs

  1. Can I purchase St. Johnstone tickets in person or over the phone?

    • Yes, you can buy tickets at the ticket office or through phone orders.
  2. Where can I find nearby parking at McDiarmid Park?

    • McDiarmid Park offers ample parking space for up to 1,000 cars on match days. The parking fee is £5 per car.
  3. Does McDiarmid Park offer stadium tours or have a museum?

    • Currently, McDiarmid Park does not provide stadium tours or feature a museum. Any future changes will be communicated on the official St. Johnstone website.

Conclusion

McDiarmid Park stands as the home of St Johnstone Football Club, embodying the rich history and spirit of this beloved team. From its humble beginnings to its triumphant victories, St Johnstone has forged a legacy that continues to captivate fans. McDiarmid Park’s unique atmosphere and excellent facilities ensure an unforgettable experience for all who visit. Whether you’re a lifelong supporter or a curious newcomer, don’t miss the opportunity to witness the magic of St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park.

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