Loftus Road: Queens Park Rangers

QPR, South Africa Road, London, W12 7PJ, England
choose__life / Panoramio

Queens Park Rangers led a somewhat nomadic life for the majority of their early existence. Between 1886, when the club was formed, and 1963, when the finally settled at Loftus Road, they played at no less than fourteen different grounds. They moved between Loftus Road itself and White City Stadium five times, though they were the only two stadiums the club has played at since being accepted into the Football League in 1920.

One of the ground’s claims to fame is that it was the first professional football stadium in Britain to boast an artificial pitch, something it did between 1981 and 1988. Loftus Road has also hosted more teams that merely Queens Park Rangers. The Rugby Union team London Wasps played their home games there from 1996 until 2002, whilst then Premier League side Fulham used the ground between 2002 and 2004 whilst Craven Cottage was being reconstructed.

Stats

Loftus Road Stats
Year Opened1904
Capacity18,439
Average Attendance17,295
Record Attendance35,353 (QPR v Leeds United (1974))
Pitch Size102 x 66 (6732)
NicknameThe Loft
OwnerQueens Park Rangers Football & Athletic Club Ltd
Clubs HostedShepherd's Bush, QPR, Fulham, Wasps
Queens Park Rangers Stats
Year Founded1886
NicknameThe Hoops, The Rs, QPR
Club MascotJude the Cat
RivalsChelsea, Fulham, Brentford, Crystal Palace, Millwall, West Ham
Previous StadiumsWelford Fields, London Scottish Ground, Brondesbury, Home Farm, Kensal Green, Gun Club , Wormwood Scrubs, Kilburn Cricket Ground, Latimer Road, Royal Agricultural Society showgrounds, Park Royal Ground, Kensal Rise Athletic Ground, White City Stadium
KitBlue & White Hoops (Home) / Red & Black Hoops (Away) / Navy & Blue Chequers (Third)
Training GroundImperial College Sports Ground
Shirt SponsorAir Asia
Team OwnerTune Group
Record Goalscorer George Goddard (172)
Record Appearances Tony Ingham (548)

Loftus Road Photos

Loftus Road Seating Plan & Where to Sit

By dom fellowes from UK (Pre Kick Off) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Loftus Road is very much built in the ‘English Style’ of having four distinct stands on each side of the ground. They are quite close to the pitch, too, which can create a very intimidating atmosphere if the fans are up for the fight. Here’s some information on each of the stands:

  • The Ellerslie Road Stand - The only single-tier stand in the ground, The Ellerslie Road Stand runs along the side of the pitch and houses the more vocal section of the QPR support.
  • The Loftus Road Stand - This imaginatively named stand, which is known as The Loft to Hoops fans, has two tiers and houses the Members area.
  • The School End Stand - This is the stand that houses the visitors, with away supporters seated in the upper of the two tiers.
  • The South Africa Road Stand - The largest of the four stands, this one has two tiers that are separated by executive boxes. It’s also where the changing rooms are located as well as the dugout and tunnel.

Queens Park Rangers Ticket Prices

The pricing structure for tickets to see Queens Park Rangers play is actually remarkably simple. There are four different categories of areas within the ground: Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze. Within those categories there are different prices to pay depending on your age and personal situation. Adults, Under-18s, Seniors of over 70, Young Adults from the age of 18 to 21 and disabled supporters will all find themselves paying different amounts from each other, though the Seniors and Young Adults normally pay the same amount.

The tickets are not categorised further depending on who the opposition is, meaning that you don’t have to worry about paying more money if QPR end up facing better teams one week than the week before. Here are the most expensive, or Platinum, and the cheapest, or Bronze, prices for Adults and Seniors:

  • Platinum: £37 / £26
  • Bronze: £24 / £15

How To Get Queens Park Rangers Tickets

The club’s official website features an interactive seating system, so it’s fair to say that that’s the best place to start. You can also call the ticket sales information line or drop in to the box office at Loftus Road itself. Randomly the club also accepts postal applications for tickets, though there’s no news about carrier pigeon acceptance or whether you can communicate with them by fire.

Getting To Loftus Road

Swap Start/End

Loftus Road is located in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, so it goes without saying that your transport options are numerous. Here are some of the more conventional routes you might wish to take:

Train - If you’re heading to London from somewhere else in the country then you almost certainly know what you’re doing, but just in case you don’t then the likelihood is that you’ll arrive at one of the main stations like Euston, Victoria or King’s Cross-St. Pancras. From there you’ll want to jump onto the London Underground, with the tube system offering you an excellent way to get to the ground.

Shepherd’s Bush is both an Overground and an Underground station and is quite a quick walk away from Loftus Road. White City and Wood Lane are also reasonably close to the ground and you’ll soon figure out which way you’re going to get to the ground if you just follow the hordes of people with blue and white scarves around their necks.

Bus - Bus number 283 stops just behind the West side of the stadium, whilst bus numbers 955 and 220 will drop you off at White City tube station.

Car - From the North you’ll take the M1, the A406 and the A40 to get to West London. From the East the A40(M) will do you, whilst from the West the M4 to Chiswick will lead onto the A315 and the A402 to Shepherd’s Bush. From the South you’ll be looking at the A3 towards Hammersmith before the A219 to Shepherd’s Bush. In all cases you’ll want to follow the signs once you get close enough.

By Air - London is served by about 350 airports, so you probably know the main one that is good for you to fly into. Gatwick, Heathrow, Stansted and even London City will all make good choices depending on where you’re flying from in the first place. Heathrow is probably the best airport for the West of London, if you’re wondering.

Taxi - As most trains tend to pull into Euston station and plenty of airport transfers head there too, we’ll give you the price of a taxi from there to Loftus Road Stadium. It will take about fifteen minutes if there’s no traffic and should cost around £20, though if there’s loads of traffic it will take longer and cost more.

Parking Near Loftus Road

Let’s be honest, it’s a nightmare to park in London. You might find a couple of private car parks that will do the job and there will be a few public car parks knocking about too, but on-street parking is not recommended due to the restrictions in place pretty much everywhere.

Useful Resources

Loftus Road Hotels

If you’re hoping to get a hotel then you’re in luck as the ground is located in London. London’s massive and it’s also the capital of England, so hotels are ten to the dozen. Here are some of our favourites that you might want to consider:

Plaza Hotel - £70+

53 Shepherds Bush Road, Shepherds Bush, W6 7LU
The Plaza Hotel is close to the Hammersmith Apollo, so you might be able to catch a gig after the football. It’s less than a mile from the ground, though, so it’s convenient for the match and offers a free breakfast as well as free Wi-Fi. More details.

Holland Park Grove Hotel - £140+

3 Aldine Street, Shepherd's Bush, W12 8AW
Located in Shepherd’s Bush itself, this characterful guest house offers breakfast, free Wi-Fi and a reasonably short walk to the ground. More details.

Dorsett Shepherds Bush - £140+

58 Shepherds Bush Green, London, W12 8QE
The Dorsett in Shepherd’s Bush has a full-service spa, a 24-hour fitness centre and a conference space. They offer free Wi-Fi and it’s quite close to Westfield shopping centre. It’s around half a mile from Loftus Road. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Loftus Road

If there are plenty of hotels in London then that is nothing compared to how many pubs there are. The capital of the country has bars and pubs aplenty so here are some of our favourites:

BrewDog Shepherd's Bush

15-19 Goldhawk Road, London, W12 8QQ (020 8749 8094)
BrewDog are rapidly making a name for themselves as the pub of choice for the hipsters of the world. The one in Shepherd’s Bush has over 40 craft beers on offer and they also serve food. They may not show the football, but it’s a great place for a pre-match pint and bite to eat.

Belushi’s

Shepherd's Bush, 13-15 Shepherd's Bush Green, London, W12 8PH (020 8735 0270)
If BrewDog is the place to go for drinkers who aren’t bothered about sport, then Belushi’s is the best place to head if you want to watch the sport and get a drink and a bite to eat. They have deals on drinks, karaoke on Thursdays and Happy Hour between 5pm and 8pm.

The Crown & Sceptre

57 Melina Road, London, W12 9HY (0208 746 0060)
The Crown & Sceptre is off the beaten tracks in Shepherd’s Bush, but you’ll get traditional food, good ales and football on big screens. Perfect.

Facilities

The facilities at Loftus Road are a little dated now, but you’ll still find all of the usual places to buy a bite to eat or have a refreshing half-time drink. There is normally a heavy police presence at the ground but the atmosphere is often friendly and relaxed. There isn’t a huge amount of legroom, however, so if you’re quite tall you might have a bit of a problem.

Prices

  • Programme: 3.50
  • Pie: 3.30
  • Cup of tea: 2.10
  • Beer: 3.50

Hospitality

Tony Fernandes' Seat at Loftus Road - By CarrickB (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

As well as all of the usual executive boxes and match sponsorship opportunities, there are two main hospitality options at Loftus Road that offer you all of the excitement of your match day experience combined with the luxury of spending time in plush surroundings. Here are some details about each:

  • The C Club - Described by the club themselves as ‘The jewel in the QPR crown’, The C Club is part private members club part restaurant with the footy on. You get a four-course dinner before the game, complimentary bar, half-time refreshments and a padded seat with a great view of the pitch.
  • The W12 Restaurant - Named after the local area’s postcode, The W12 is a more chilled out lounge when compared to The C Club. You’ll get a three-course meal with half a bottle of wine per person, access to a cash bar, half-time refreshments and a padded seat on the halfway line. There will also be a club legend hanging about the place before the match telling tales of years gone by.

Private Hire

Whether you’re looking for somewhere to host a conference, a banquet or merely a business meeting, Loftus Road could be the ideal venue for you. They can accommodate up to 200 guests and the executive boxes at the ground are ideal for breakout meetings. The club is also licensed to host weddings, so if you’re a massive Hoops fan then this could be just what you’ve been looking for!

Stadium Tours & Museum

Unusually for a professional football club, Queens Park Rangers operate tours on both match days and non-match days. You’ll get to go behind-the-scenes and take in both sets of dressing rooms, the press area, the hospitality sections, the trophy cabinet and the tunnel leading you down to the side of the pitch. The tour costs £15 for adults and £7.50 for juniors, though the club also operates tours hosted by legends such as Les Ferdinand from time to time and you’ll obviously pay more to be on one of them.

At the time of writing there is not a club museum either at the ground or elsewhere. That may change in the future and if it does we’ll let you know.

About Queens Park Rangers

Queens Park Rangers squad from 1911/12 - By Unknown - but likely to have been published in a British newspaper as this was the team that won the Southern League in 1911/12. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

QPR as a team were formed in 1886 when Christchurch Rangers were merged with St. Judes Institute. They got their name from the fact that the players came from the Queen’s Park area of West London. The club’s location in West London itself leads them to compete in the West London Derby. Unlike most derbies this isn’t just between two clubs but rather any combination of two clubs that are based in West London: namely Chelsea, Fulham and Brentford.

Among the club’s more notable former players are Les Ferdinand, who scored 80 goals in 163 games for the club, Rodney Marsh, who became a well-known pundit, and Gerry Francis, who went on to manage the club and led them to a fifth placed finish in the inaugural campaign of the Premier League.

Loftus Road History

View from the rooftops - Martin Belam / Flikr.com

Queens Park Rangers first moved to Loftus Road in 1917 after their former ground Park Royal was commandeered the army. When they arrived at the ground it had just a pavilion at the end of an open field, but they brought one stand with them from Park Royal, which was erected at the Ellersie Road end of the ground and remained there until 1968.

The club moved in and out of the ground several times, alternating their time between Loftus Road and White City Stadium. When they returned in the middle of the 1962-1963 season it was for the final time and they’ve been there ever since. Despite being the first team in England to use an artificial pitch, it wasn’t popular with everyone. Their goalkeeper at the time, Peter Hucker, complained about diving on it as he felt like he ended up with third degree burns.

Future Developments

Loftus Road entrance Known to supporters as 'The Lower Loft' - Phillip Perry [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The club are hoping to move to a new stadium, called New Queens Park, in 2018. The 40,000 seat stadium will replace Loftus Road so it’s unlikely that there’ll be any major developments to the current ground in the foreseeable future.

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