Wednesday, 19 Jun 2024

Memorial Stadium: Bristol Rovers

Located in Bristol, the Memorial Stadium is a historic venue with a rich sporting heritage. Originally known as the Memorial Ground, it was built in memory of local rugby union players who lost their lives during World War I. While the stadium has been the home of Bristol Rovers since 1996, it has a long history of hosting various sports events since its establishment in 1921.

A Brief History

The site where the stadium stands today was once known as Buffalo Bill’s Field, as it hosted Colonel William “Buffalo Bill” Cody’s Wild West Show in 1891. During World War I, the land was used for allotments before being purchased by Sir Francis Nicholas Cowlin, the Sheriff of Bristol. Cowlin generously donated the land to Bristol Rugby Club, which then proceeded to build a stadium on it.

Stadium Stats

  • Year Opened: 1921
  • Capacity: 12,300
  • Average Attendance: 8,907
  • Record Attendance: 12,011 (Bristol Rovers vs. West Brom, 2008)
  • Pitch Size: 101 x 68 meters
  • Nickname: The Mem
  • Former Name: Memorial Ground

Memorial Stadium Photos

Memorial Stadium

Memorial Stadium Seating Plan and Where to Sit

The Memorial Stadium offers a variety of seating options for spectators. Here are the main stands:

  • North Stand: A single-tier terrace section known for its passionate Rovers supporters.
  • East Stand: A tall structure with terraced sections on either side.
  • South Stand: A fully-seated section with a roof.
  • West Terrace: Resembling a cricket pavilion, it features both terraced areas and seating.
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Bristol Rovers Ticket Prices

Bristol Rovers offers ticket prices based on two main categories: General Admission and Big Six. The cost of tickets depends on factors like age, seating location, and the opposing team. Here is a general pricing guide:

  • General Admission:

    • Adults: £20-£26
    • Concessions (U21 and over 65): £16-£22
  • Big Six:

    • Adults: £22-£28
    • Concessions (U21 and over 65): £18-£24

How To Get Bristol Rovers Tickets

To purchase tickets for Bristol Rovers matches, you can visit the club’s official website, call their ticket hotline, or visit one of their retail outlets.

Getting To Memorial Stadium

Bristol is easily accessible from various locations. Here are some common travel options:

  • Train: Montpelier and Bristol Parkway stations are approximately two miles away from the stadium. If traveling from further afield, Bristol Temple Meads is the main station in the city.
  • Bus: First Group operates several buses from Bristol center to the stadium. Their journey planner can help you find the most convenient route.
  • Car: From the north, east, and west, take the M4 and exit at Junction 19 onto the M32. Leave at Junction 2 and follow the signs. From the south, take the M5 to Junction 16 and then the A38. Look out for signs to the stadium in the Bristol suburbs.
  • Air: Bristol International Airport serves both domestic and international flights.

Parking Near Memorial Stadium

While there is a permit-only car park at the stadium, there are also options for free parking nearby. Residential roads around the ground allow parking, but be mindful of any parking restrictions. Additionally, Muller Road and Gloucester Road offer free parking and are within a 5-10 minute walk of the stadium.

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Memorial Stadium Hotels

Bristol offers a wide range of hotels to suit various budgets. Here are some recommendations:

  • [Hotel 1]
  • [Hotel 2]
  • [Hotel 3]

Pubs and Bars Near Memorial Stadium

Looking for a pre-match pint? Bristol has plenty of options. Here are some popular pubs and bars near the stadium:

  • [Pub 1]
  • [Pub 2]
  • [Pub 3]

Facilities

The Memorial Stadium features stands that offer decent views, although some have support pillars that can obstruct sightlines. The concourses provide the usual amenities expected at a football stadium.

Prices

  • Programme: £3
  • Pie: £3.20
  • Cup of tea: £1.50
  • Beer: £3.50

Hospitality

For those seeking a premium matchday experience, the Memorial Stadium offers various hospitality options. The club’s restaurant is a popular choice, providing a three-course carvery, half-time refreshments, and access to a cash bar. Hospitality packages may also include seating in the East Stand and the opportunity to witness the Man of the Match award presentation.

Private Hire

The Memorial Stadium is not only a venue for football matches but also caters to a range of private events. From Christmas parties to funeral wakes, the stadium has hosted a variety of functions, including weddings, conferences, and Mother’s Day lunches.

Stadium Tours & Museum

Unfortunately, public tours of the Memorial Stadium are not currently available. The club does not have a museum, but it may arrange tours by appointment for youth football clubs and similar groups, subject to a fee of £26 per person.

About Bristol Rovers

Founded in 1883 as the Black Arabs, Bristol Rovers Football Club has evolved over the years, eventually adopting its current name in 1899. The club is affectionately known as The Pirates due to the city’s maritime connection, although it is also referred to as The Gas. Bristol Rovers boast an impressive record, winning the Gloucestershire Cup 32 times, the Watney Cup once, and the Football League Third Division South Cup once. They have also reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup three times.

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Memorial Stadium History

The Memorial Stadium’s history is deeply intertwined with rugby, having hosted Bristol Rugby Club from 1921 until 2014. Additionally, the stadium has been a venue for varsity games between the University of the West of England and the University of Bristol. In 2013, it even hosted a Rugby League World Cup match between the Cook Islands and the USA.

Bristol Rovers moved to the Memorial Stadium in 1996 after leaving their previous home at Eastville Stadium. Initially, they shared the ground with Bristol Rugby under an agreement that allowed either team to purchase the other’s share in case of financial difficulties. In 1998, Rovers acquired full ownership, and Bristol Rugby became tenants. Bristol Rugby left the stadium in 2014, leaving Bristol Rovers as the sole occupant.

Future Developments

In 2011, Bristol Rovers announced plans to relocate to a new stadium, funded by the sale of the Memorial Stadium to supermarket giant Sainsbury’s. However, Sainsbury’s pulled out of the project in 2014, leaving the future uncertain. The club was later purchased by the Jordanian Al-Qadi family, who have since initiated developments, including the ongoing expansion of the South Stand, which will increase capacity and provide a proper concourse area and a solid roof structure.