Riverside Stadium: Middlesbrough FC

The Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough, Teeside, TS3 6RS, England
By Chemical Engineer (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Riverside Stadium opened in 1995 as a replacement for Ayresome Park after the Taylor Report declared that stadiums needed to be all-seater and it was decided that it would be too difficult to expand the original ground. Teeside Development Corporation offered Middlesbrough the Middlehaven location near to the River Tees. The 30,000 seat stadium cost £16 million to build and was constructed by Taylor Woodrow Construction.

The stadium opened with a win for the home side when they beat Chelsea 2-0 on the 26th of August 1995. The first ever goal at the new stadium was scored by Craig Hignett and the second goal was netted by Jan Åge Fjørtoft. The first season at the ground was also the club’s first back in the Premier League after two seasons away. Sadly their second season wasn’t as successful, with Boro losing out in the final of both domestic cups as well as relegated from the top-flight.

Stats

Riverside Stadium Stats
Year Opened1995
Capacity34,742
Average Attendance30,449
Record Attendance35,000 (England v Slovakia (2004))
Pitch Size105 x 69 (7245)
NicknameThe Riverside
Former NameMiddlehaven Stadium, Erimus Stadium, Cellnet Riverside Stadium and Teesside Stadium
OwnerMiddlesbrough F.C.
Clubs HostedMiddlesbrough F.C.
First FixtureMiddlesbrough v Chelsea (26/08/1995)
Middlesbrough Stats
Year Founded1876
NicknameThe Boro, Smoggies
Club MascotRoary the Lion
RivalsSunderland, Newcastle, Leeds United, Carlisle United
Previous Stadiums Linthorpe Road West cricket ground, Ayresome Park
KitRed with White (Home) / White with Blue (Away)
Training GroundRockliffe Park Training Complex
Shirt SponsorRamsdens Currency
Team OwnerSteve Gibson
Record GoalscorerGeorge Camsell (345)
Record AppearancesTim Williamson (602)

Riverside Stadium Photos

Riverside Stadium Seating Plan & Where to Sit

By Chemical Engineer (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Riverside is something of a cross between a bowl style stadium and the more traditional English style, four-sided ground. It is a fully enclosed stadium and every seat inside has an uninterrupted view of the pitch.

  • The North Stand - This stand backs onto the nearby River Tees and is the location of the more vocal home supporters. Because of that it’s known as the New Colgate End, in reference to the stand at Ayresome Park where the same fans used to congregate.
  • The West Stand - This is the largest stand in the ground and runs along the side of the pitch. There are executive boxes along its length and it is also the part of the ground that houses the changing rooms and the tunnel that leads to the pitch.
  • The East Stand - This is the stand that houses both the Family Zone and the the visiting supporters.
  • The South Stand - This used to be where the away supporters were located but they were moved before the start of the 2013-2014 season. The vocal group of supporters known as the Red Faction are housed here.

Middlesbrough Ticket Prices

Unlike most teams in the country, Middlesbrough don’t categorise their matches depending on the opposition. The only reason you’ll pay more money than someone else is if you chose to sit in a different part of the ground from them, as that’s how the pricing structure works. Here we’ll give you the different ticket prices for adults and the over-65s. The club also runs a scheme called Boro Pride, through which you can get a discount on match day tickets.

  • Adults - £27 - £34
  • Concessions - £18 - £26

How To Get Middlesbrough Tickets

If you’re hoping to get tickets for Middlesbrough games then your best bet is to head to the club’s official website. From there you’ll be able to pick out and buy your tickets. If you don’t trust websites then you can call the club’s ticket office directly or else call in at the ticket office at the Riverside in person.

Getting To Riverside Stadium

Swap Start/End

The Riverside is just a mile from the centre of Middlesbrough, with the city itself being out on the North-East of England’s coast. That means it’s a little out of the way but still in a good position to get to.

Train - Middlesbrough Train Station is about twenty minutes walk from the ground. It’s about three hours away from London with a change in Darlington, whilst if you’re heading there from a North-West location such as Liverpool it could take up to four hours with a change at York.

Bus - The nearest bus station to the ground is one that stops outside Cineworld, about ten minutes walk from the stadium. Bus numbers 36, 37, 38, 456 and 611 all stop there and most run through the centre of the city.

Car - From the North you’ll approach Middlesbrough on the A19 before changing onto the A66 until you see the stadium. If you’re coming from the South then you’ll leave the A1(M) at junction 49 and get onto the A168. That will become the A19 and then the A66. Those of you coming from the West will leave the A1(M) at Junction 57 on to the A66(M). Stay on there for about 19 miles and you’ll see the ground.

By Air - Durham Tees Valley International Airport is technically located in Darlington, around thirteen miles from The Riverside. It’s the place you’ll be flying in to if you’re coming to see Middlesbrough from abroad.

Taxi - The amount you’ll pay for a taxi journey depends on where you’re coming from. If you want a taxi from the airport to the ground, for example, then it will cost about £35 and take something in the region of twenty minutes. If you get caught in traffic then it could cost more, however.

Parking Near Riverside Stadium

Parking at the stadium itself on a match day is restricted to permit holders. If you don’t have a permit then the club recommends that you park in the centre of town.

Useful Resources

Riverside Stadium Hotels

Middlesbrough is an ever-growing city, so there are a huge variety of hotels there. We’ve picked some of our favourites for your consideration here, though:

Kingswood Guest House - £50+

379 Norton Road, Norton, Stockton-on-Tees, TS20 2PJ
This sweet little bed and breakfast has just fifteen rooms but offers breakfast, free Wi-Fi and free parking all in a location just under four miles from the ground. More details.

Jurys Inn Middlesbrough - £75+

Fry Street, Middlesbrough, TS1 1JH
Around half a mile from the stadium is the Jurys Inn. It has a health club with a pool, a restaurant and bar and self-parking. More details.

Holiday Inn Express Middlesbrough Centre Square - £110+

93-127 Albert Road, Middlesbrough, TS1 2PA
The Holiday Inn is just under a mile from the ground and has a business centre, meeting rooms and self-parking. There’s also the ubiquitous free Wi-Fi and, more importantly, a free buffet breakfast. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Riverside Stadium

There aren’t a heap of pubs near to the ground that welcome football fans. Thankfully the city is one with a great number of places to get a drink, so you shouldn’t be short of a watering hole or two.

Dr Browns

135 Corporation Rd, Middlesbrough, TS1 2RR (01642 803648)
With friendly, welcoming staff and a menu that will suit all tastes, Dr Browns is an excellent place to head to before you go to the match.

Lord Byron

Bridge St E, Middlesbrough, TS2 1NW (01642 211326)
The Lord Byron was one of Middlesbrough’s original pubs but has been renovated in recent years. It is now a chain pub that serves food and shows live sports on big screens.

The Isaac Wilson

61 Wilson St, Middlesbrough, TS1 1SF (01642 247708)
The Isaac Wilson is a JD Wetherspoon pub, so you know exactly what you’re going to get. You’ll find cheap food and drink and live sports on televisions around the building.

Facilities

The inside of the Riverside is a little bland, but the facilities are as good as you’d expect for a modern day stadium. There are places on the concourses to buy a bite to eat or a quick drink before the game and wide concourses on which to eat and drink them.

Prices

  • Programme: 3.00
  • Pie: 2.90
  • Cup of tea: 2.00
  • Beer: 3.00

Hospitality

The old gates from the club's former home Ayresome Park - By Julia from Birmingham, England (Middlesbrough: The Riverside Stadium) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

There are a number of excellent hospitality options at the Riverside Stadium, including the opportunity to sponsor a match in its entirety or hire an executive box for you and your business associates. Here are some of the other options available to you:

  • The Ayresome - This lounge is named in honour of the club’s old ground and is an intimate environment to spend time in. As part of the package you’ll get a champagne reception with canapes, a four-course a la carte menu to choose from, complimentary drinks and directors box seating. You’ll also enjoy half-time refreshments and post-match finger bites.
  • The Riverside Restaurant - This is a prestigious location in which to entertain your clients. You’ll enjoy a specially designed four-course menu, a private pay bar facility with optional drinks package, half-time and full-time refreshments as well as hosting by a club legend.
  • The Legends Lounge - You'll have a three-course carvery meal here, as well as complimentary bar and half-time refreshments. You’ll also find that the occasion is hosted by a club legend who will interview match guests before the game.
  • The Fenton Club - With excellent hospitality and panoramic views, your time here will be hosted by Middlesbrough legend Jim Platt. A delicious three-course carvery awaits, along with a private pay bar and half and post-match refreshments.
  • Hardwick and Middlehaven - This is the most relaxed of all of the lounges available to you. It’s a sports bar style venue with a private pay bar, casual dress code and a light bite.

Private Hire

The Riverside has a number of excellent private hire options available to you as well as website dedicated specifically to that very purpose. You can hire parts of the ground for conferences, exhibitions or even training events. The stadium is also licensed to host weddings, so if you’d like to have your special day there then you should get in touch with the club directly and they’ll let you know how they can help make it a brilliant occasion for all concerned.

Stadium Tours & Museum

The home and away dressing rooms, referee’s changing room, the tunnel and the side of the pitch are all places you can expect to visit if you go on a tour of the Riverside. You’ll also get to sit in the manager’s seat in the press room and imagine you’re briefing the nation’s press after a big match! You’ll get a chance to have a look in the boardroom as well as sit in the club Director’s box to see what he’ll see on a match day.

Tours don’t always operate on a regular basis so make sure you get in touch with the club before you head there. The tour costs £10 for an adult and £5 for under-18s and you might just get the chance to meet a Boro first-team player or two!

About Middlesbrough

Ayresome Park in 1991 - Steve Daniels [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Known affectionately to their fans as Boro, Middlesbrough Football Club was formed in 1876 and was one of the founding members of the Premier League when it was formed in 1992. They played at Ayresome Park for 92 years until it was decided that that ground wouldn’t be able to be redeveloped to get it up to the standard necessary to meet with the demands of the Taylor Report.

The club’s highest finish to date in the top-flight was third, a position they reached in the 1913-1914 season. In their history they have only played outside of the Football League’s top two division for two seasons. Although they have competed in most major competitions, including the FA Cup and the UEFA Cup, the only major trophy that they have won is the League Cup, something that they achieved in 2004. They did reach the final of the UEFA Cup in 2006 but they lost out on the trophy to Spanish side Seville.

Riverside Stadium History

View of the Riverside Stadium from the docklands - Steve Frost [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

With a capacity of over 34,000, the Riverside isn’t one of the largest grounds in the country but it’s a place with its own character and can create a good atmosphere when the fans are up for it. It took just nine months to build and cost in the region of £16 million. The fans chose the name of the stadium as the Riverside from a list of options that also included Erimus Stadium, Teeside Stadium and Middlehaven Stadium. As well as Middlesbrough matches the ground has also played host to numerous England Under-21 games over the years. It was also one of the venues used for the 2012 London Olympics friendly games.

In 1998 Boro gained promotion back to the Premier League after just one season in what is now called the Championship. The promotion back to the top division also saw the stadium’s capacity expand by 5000 at a cost of £5 million. Interestingly, the Riverside is one of the few stadiums in the country that is self-sustaining after the local council gave the club permission to build a win turbine next to it. The turbine powers the ground and the club sells any excess to the National Grid.

Future Developments

By Julia from birmingham, england (Middlesbrough: The Riverside Stadium) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In August 2015 it was announced that the club was going to work alongside a digital technology company to introduce what it referred to as ‘game-changing’ technology to the stadium. The idea is that stats, news and information will be broadcast to fans throughout the ground, though that hasn't happed at the time of writing.

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