Villa Park: Aston Villa FC

Aston Villa Football Club, Trinity Road, Birmingham, West Midlands, B6 6HE
Holte End - By Elliott Brown [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Aston Villa have called Villa Park home since 1897, though to begin with it was actually known as Aston Lower Grounds. At the time it was a sport ground that was situated in a Victorian amusement park in the grounds of Aston Hall. Aston Hall was a Jacobean stately home and, though current Villa fans might suggest that their future looks like it will resemble a Jacobean tragedy, the stadium has a storied history.

Up until the start of the First World War the perimeter of the pitch at Villa Park was surrounded by a cycling track and was the location for numerous cycling meetings and athletic events. The now defunct UEFA Cup Winner’s Cup saw its last ever final played at Villa Park in 1999, whilst the ground is also the only one in the country to host international football in three different sports.

Stats

Villa Park Stats
Year Opened1897
Capacity42,682
Average Attendance34,000
Record Attendance76,588 (Aston Villa v Derby County (1946))
Pitch Size105 x 68 (7140)
NicknameVilla Park
Former NameAston Lower Grounds
OwnerAston Villa F.C.
Clubs HostedAston Villa FC
First FixtureAston Villa v BlackBurn Rovers (17/04/1897)
Aston Villa Stats
Year Founded1874
NicknameThe Villans, The Villa, Villa
Club MascotHercules The Lion
RivalsBirmingham City, West Bromwich Albion, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Coventry City
Previous StadiumsAston Park / Wellington Road
KitClaret & Blue (Home) / Yellow & Black (Away)
Training GroundBodymoor Heath Training Ground
Shirt SponsorQuickbooks
Team OwnerRecon Sports Limited
Record GoalscorerBilly Walker (244)
Record AppearancesCharlie Aitken (657)

Villa Park Photos

Villa Park Seating Plan & Where to Sit

By Woodym555 [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Villa Park has stands on all four sides of the stadium and a running track around the perimeter, separating the supporters from the pitch somewhat. Where you’ll want to sit will differ depending on your strength of support.

  • The Holte End - Traditionally the place for Villa’s most loyal and passionate supporters to sit, The Holte End has two large tiers and a curved structure to allow for excellent sight lines wherever you sit. Built in 1994-1995, the stand has no executive boxes but there is a large hospitality suite in the concourse area.
  • The Trinity Road Stand Stand - The most recently built of Villa Park’s stands, The Trinity Road Stand is the side of the ground where you’ll find the club offices and director’s boxes. It is made up of three tiers with a row of boxes in between tiers two and three. In the corner that joins this stand with The Holte End is a three-storey pavilion structure that houses the club’s corporate hospitality.
  • The North Stand - The oldest of the stands in the ground, The North Stand is two tiered and has a double row of executive boxes running between the tiers.
  • The Doug Ellis Stand - Another two tiered structure, The Doug Ellis Stand has more executive boxes running between the tiers. Away fans occupy the Northern end of both tiers of this stand.

Aston Villa Ticket Prices

Like most top clubs, Aston Villa operate a tiered system for their games. Matches are broken down into categories depending on the team that Villa will be hosting. Category A matches tend to be the top teams and also includes Villa’s rivals like Birmingham City.

Category B matches are usually the mid-table teams, whilst category C games will be against the newly promoted or less successful teams. The prices within the categories are then broken down further depending on where in the ground you’re sitting. You can also get cheaper tickets by taking advantage of the ‘Earlybird’ deals.

Here we’ll give you the most expensive & cheapest tickets for adults and concessions in each category. Aston Villa determine that concessions are for over 65s, 18-20 year olds, students in full-time education and members of the Armed Forces.

League Games

  • Category A: £25 - £37 / £25 - £37
  • Category B: £23 - £33 / £20 - £33
  • Category C: £20 - £28 / £15 - £28

How To Get Aston Villa Tickets

The quickest and best way to get tickets is to visit Villa’s dedicated ticketing website at https://www.eticketing.co.uk/avfc/default.aspx. If you would rather speak to someone on the phone or are making group bookings, however, then it’s worth calling the ticket office on 0333 323 1874 or 0333 323 1982 if you’re after hospitality tickets. You may find people outside of the ground offering tickets, but these people are to be avoided.

Getting To Villa Park

Swap Start/End

Villa Park is quite easy to get to thanks to its location not far from the motorway and with train stations nearby. It’s also a friendly ground for pedestrians as the club employs a ‘traffic exclusion zone’ around the stadium on match days.

Train - There are two stations near to Villa Park. Aston Station is is about 15 minutes walk from the ground and will take about 5-10 minutes to reach by train from Birmingham New Street, whilst Witton Station is about 9 minutes from New Street and takes around 5 minutes to get to the ground from there.

Bus - The number 7 and 11 buses both stop really near to Villa Park, whilst the 65 and 67 buses both stop within walking distance of the stadium.There are also Villa Special Bus Services operated by the club.

Car - If you’re travelling from the North then leave the M6 at junction 7 before following the A34 south, then following signposts to the University Of Central England, the A4040, at which point the ground will be well signposted. From the South take the M1 to the M6 then exit at junction 6 for the A38(M). Take the first right then get onto Wilton Road from the roundabout.

By Air - Birmingham International Airport has a direct train route to Birmingham New Street where you can change to get the train to either Aston or Witton stations.

Taxi - A taxi from Birmingham Airport to Villa Park will take between 20-30 minutes and prices will vary depending on the company you use and the time of day you’re travelling. From New Street Station it will cost £8ish and take around 10 minutes, traffic depending.

Parking Near Villa Park

Aston Villa imposes a ‘traffic exclusion zone’ on match days, so you won’t be able to park all that close to the stadium. The club themselves recommend avoiding parking in residential areas, but in truth there are numerous roads you can park on that are around ten minutes walk from the ground and will be free. There are also a few unofficial car parks near to the ground where you can park for between £5 and £10.

Useful Resources

Villa Park Hotels

Villa Park is around 10 minutes drive from the centre of Birmingham, so your hotel options are plentiful. You can stay in any city centre hotel and be able to get to the ground easily enough, but we’ve picked 3 for you here depending on your circumstances.

Hotel Campanile, Birmingham - £40+

Chester Street Aston Lock, Aston, B6 4BE
The budget French hotel is located about 1 mile from the ground and offers free parking, a restaurant and lounge and a rooftop terrace. More details.

Hampton By Hilton, Birmingham City North - £75+

104 Constitution Hill, Birmingham, B19 3JT
Hilton Hotels are very well-known, so you know what you’re getting. The hotel has a bar and lounge as well as a fitness centre. It is located around 1.6 miles from Villa Park. More details.

Staying Cool At The Rotunda - £167+

Rotunda, 150 New Street, Birmingham, B2 4PA
The Rotunda is one of Birmingham’s stand out hotels and is located smack bang in the city centre. It is an upscale apartment with its own kitchen rather than a hotel and comes with Wi-Fi, a continental breakfast and parking. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Villa Park

The Aston Tavern

Aston Hall Road, Birmingham, B6 6QA (0121 328 0095)
Off limits for away fans, The Aston Tavern shows sports on the big screen and is a beautifully restored, traditional looking pub. With a courtyard and gardens, this is the place to go if you’re looking for something a little different, including a hog roast!

The Witton Arms

458 Witton Road, Birmingham, B6 6SN (0121 344 4514)
Designated an away fans only pub, The Witton Arms has a function room and shows sport on the big screen and is about 10 minutes walk from Villa Park.

The Square Peg

115 Corporation St, Birmingham, B4 6PH (0121 236 6530)
Located in Birmingham City Centre and good for New Street Station, The Square Peg is a Wetherspoons so expect all of the joys you’d find in such a place including decent food and colourful locals.

Facilities

Just as you’d imagine for a top end football ground, Villa Park has plenty of excellent facilities off the pitch for the match going supporter. You can expect quick service from the bars and kiosks in the concourse areas and you can be assured a friendly, exciting atmosphere.

Prices

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

Hospitality

Given the amount of executive boxes that Aston Villa have around the ground, it’s no surprise that the hospitality options are numerous. The club offers a host of packages targeted at pretty much every budget. You can take them up on a personal celebratory event or an exclusive corporate hospitality deal.

You can sponsor the match ball and be rewarded with inclusive hospitality for sixteen guests, including one guest handing the ball to the referee. If you’d rather go for a restaurant package then the 1874 Premier one will see you get a guided tour of Villa Park and a champagne reception as well as dining and a seat on a private balcony to watch the match.

You can hire executive boxes on a match by match basis for parties of 6-20, enjoying hospitality and a private view of the pitch. There’s also the Sky Lounge, which is Villa’s more informal match going hospitality experience. This is located in The Trinity Road Stand, so you’ll have a cracking view of the entirety of Villa Park from there.

Private Hire

Birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and retirements, Villa Park has seen them all. The caterers have won awards and there is ample free parking near to the ground. The club can cater for parties of various sizes and you’ll also have a dedicated event co-ordinator for you to deal with directly.

Villa Park prides itself on being one of the most unique venues around for Asian Weddings as well as being a generally spectacular venue for all weddings. They also offer Christmas Party deals. There are numerous banqueting options available, too.

Stadium Tours & Museum

Tours of Villa park take place three times a day, Monday - Saturday. They are at 10.30am, 1pm and 3pm. Confusingly there aren’t tours on match days or the morning after a match. There are Sunday tours that are at 10.30am and this includes lunch, or at 1pm with no lunch.

As well as seeing the first team dressing rooms, the post-match interview room and the officials’ room, you’ll also walk down the tunnel to pitch side and get a chance to sit in the manager’s seat in the dugout. Villa have also started to display their trophies, including the FA Cup, Division One Trophy and European Cup, so you’ll be able to have your photo taken professionally with one of them if you like.

About Aston Villa

Gates on Witton Lane - By Elliott Brown [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Aston Villa are one of the oldest clubs in English football and are one of only five English teams to win the European Cup, or the Champion’s League to give it its current name. They are also fifth in the list of clubs with major honours to their name, having won seven First Division trophies, seven FA Cups, five League Cups and the UEFA Super Cup.

Though things haven’t been great for Villa on the pitch in recent years, they still hold the record for the number of players that have made international appearances for England at 73. That is equalled by Tottenham but surpassed by nobody.

Villa Park History

Villa Park during a match against Liverpool in 1907 - By Albert Wilkes.Villafanuk at en.wikipedia (log) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

Villa Park lays claim to numerous boasts, not least of which is the fact that it has hosted more FA Cup semi-finals than any other stadium - 55 matches in all. Aston Villa moved to the stadium from Wellington Road in 1897 and as well as football the ground has also hosted boxing matches, international rugby league and rugby union matches and the 2012 Community Shield match between Chelsea and Manchester City.

There is also something of a Royal connection at Villa Park. In 1924 George VI, then The Duke Of York, officially opened The Trinity Road Stand at Villa Park. 77 years later and his grandson, HRH The Prince of Wales, opened the newly renovated Trinity Road Stand. The Prince of Wales’ son, Prince William, is also one of Aston Villa’s most famous supporters.

Future Developments

North Stand of Villa Park - By Ben Sutherland (originally posted to Flickr as Villa Park car park) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Randy Learner, Villa’s American owner, promised the fans a redeveloped North Stand that would take the stadium’s capacity to 50,000 when he bought the club. Sadly these plans have been dropped in recent years, with Learner instead looking for someone to buy the club off him. The proposals exist but there are no plans to move ahead with them at present.

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