Ewood Park: Blackburn Rovers

Nuttall Street, Blackburn, Lancashire, BB2 4JF, England
Laurencet / Flikr.com

Like a gentleman lover who took his time to realise his one true love, Blackburn Rovers called numerous different stadiums home before finally settling at Ewood Park. They started life at Oozehead Ground, a piece of farmland that was used to graze cows when no-one was playing football on it. They spent part of a year at Pleasington Cricket Ground before moving to another cricket pitch, Alexandra Meadows for four years. It seemed like they had found a permanent home when they spent nine years at Leamington Road, the club’s first purpose-built ground, but an increase in the cost of the lease saw them forced into moving for one final time.

Ewood Park was built in 1882 and was an all-purpose sporting venue that hosted football matches, dog races and athletics meets before Rovers took over and turned into an exclusively footballing ground. The club had actually player some games there when it was first opened in 1882 and so when the board realised they would have to leave Leamington Road it seemed like the most obvious fit for their needs.

Stats

Ewood Park Stats
Year Opened1882
Capacity31,367
Average Attendance10,790
Record Attendance61,783 (Blackburn v Bolton (1929))
Pitch Size105 x 69 (7245)
Former NameEwood Bridge
OwnerBlackburn Rovers and Athletic plc
Clubs HostedBlackburn Rovers F.C.
First FixtureBlackburn Rovers v Sheffield Wednesday (09/04/1881)
Blackburn Rovers Stats
Year Founded1875
NicknameRovers, The Blue and Whites, The Riversiders
Club MascotRover the Dog
RivalsBurnley, Bolton, Man United, Preston, Man City
Previous StadiumsLeamington Street
KitBlue & White (Home) / Red & Black (Away)
Training GroundBrockhall Training Ground
Shirt Sponsordafabet
Team OwnerVenky's London Ltd.
Record GoalscorerSimon Garner (194)
Record AppearancesDerek Fazackerley (596)

Ewood Park Photos

Ewood Park Seating Plan & Where to Sit

By dom fellowes from UK (Ewood Park) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Ewood Park is the quintessential ‘English Style’ stadium, with four distinct stands on each side of the pitch. Here’s some detail about each of them:

  • The Bryan Douglas Darwen End Stand - There are two levels to this stand that are separated by a row of executive boxes. It is where the away supporters are housed.
  • The Jack Walker Stand - Named after the former owner of the club that led them to their most successful period, this stand has a capacity of 11,000 over two tiers separated by boxes and houses the changing rooms and tunnel to the pitch side.
  • The RFS Riverside Stand - This is the only part of the ground that is single-tiered and is also the oldest part of the stadium.
  • The Ronnie Clayton Blackburn End Stand - Originally known as simply The Blackburn end because it’s the closest stand to the city centre, it was re-named after the club’s record appearance holder in 2011.

Blackburn Rovers Ticket Prices

Blackburn separate their ticket prices out into a number of different sections, starting with age. There are tickets for adults, concessions and juniors. Within this category prices are broken down further depending on where in the ground you’d like to sit. Finally, as is the case with most clubs, the matches are categorised in order to get fans to pay more money to see better teams play at Ewood Park.

Here are the cheapest and most expensive tickets in each category for adults and concessions. The cheapest tickets tend to be in The RFS Riverside Stand, whilst the most expensive ones are in the Jack Walker Centre.

  • Category A: £27 - £38 / £18 - £31
  • Category B: £21 - £30 / £13 - £26
  • Category C: £17 - £26 / £11 - £23
  • Category D: £12 - £26 / £9 - £23

How To Get Blackburn Rovers Tickets

You can buy tickets for Blackburn games from the Roverstore at Ewood Park or the one in the centre of Blackburn town. You can also get them online at the club’s official website or by calling the box office directly. You can even buy them through the post or by sending a fax; proper old school options.

Where to Buy

Getting To Ewood Park

Blackburn is in the heart of Lancashire, so it’s easier to get to from the North than the South. Here are the more standard methods of transport you might want to consider:

Train - There are two stations reasonably close to Ewood Park. Blackburn Railway Station is around a mile and a half away and Mill Hill Station is more like a mile away, so there’s a bit of a walk from either. There are direct trains from Manchester Victoria and Preston to both.

Bus - Buses number 1, 2, 5a and 5c all serve the ground from the centre of Blackburn.

Car - From the North you’ll leave the M6 at Junction 29 for the M61 then the M65, following the signs. From the South you’ll follow the same directions, whilst from the West you’ll take M6 or M62 or M60 before joining the M61 to the M65 and then get on the A666. If you’re coming from the East you’ll take the B6234 onto the A56 before joining the M65 and the A666.

By Air - The closest airport to Blackburn is Blackpool International Airport, which is around 22 miles away. Manchester Airport serves more destinations and is only a little bit further away at roughly 30 miles.

Taxi - A taxi from Blackburn Railway Station to Ewood Park should take less than ten minutes and cost about £9. Obviously if you get caught in traffic it will take longer and cost more.

Parking Near Ewood Park

There are three car parks at Ewood Park that you you need to book a place at in advance. You might want to take a chance with on-street parking but do keep your eye out for parking restrictions that are in place there.

Useful Resources

Ewood Park Hotels

Leeds has a number of theatres as well as top-class sporting venues, so the city is used to welcoming people to stay for the night. As such you’ve got a host of hotels available to choose from, though here are some of our favourites:

Boddington Arms Hotel - £70+

Myerscough Road, Blackburn, BB2 7LE
About five miles from Ewood Park is this hotel above a pub. Do you need to know more than that? Ok, they offer breakfast, have free Wi-Fi and free parking, too. More details.

Best Western Mytton Fold Hotel & Golf - £90+

Whalley Road, Langho, Blackburn, BB6 8AB
The clue’s in the title with this place. It’s around six miles from the ground and has a golf course, a 24-hour business centre, a restaurant and bar as well as a garden area and a conference space. Unsurprisingly it also offers free Wi-Fi and free parking. More details.

The Millstone At Mellor - £110+

Church Lane, Mellor, Blackburn, BB2 7JR
This is the closest hotel to the ground at around three and a half miles but is also the most expensive. There’s a restaurant, a bar and you also get a free English breakfast included in the cost of your stay. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Ewood Park

Blackburn is a typical Northern city with plenty of character and loads of places to get a drink and a bite to eat before the match. Here are some of our favourite places to help you narrow down your options:

The Golden Cup

610 Blackburn Road, Darwen, BB3 0AJ (01254 775636)
The best pub for away fans, The Golden Cup is a fifteen minute walk or so from the ground and has a large beer garden for when the sun is beating down. It’s a Thwaites pub so you’ll get cask ales and live sport on the TV.

Molloys

78-80 King William Street, Blackburn, BB1 7DT (01254 59709)
Molloys is in the centre of town and offers food, good drinks and an exciting atmosphere. They also show sport on big screens throughout the venue, obviously.

Last Orders

43-45 Darwen Street, Blackburn, BB2 2BH (01254 54285)
Last Orders pub welcomes both home and away supporters and offers low prices on draught beers and shows most live sporting events.

Facilities

Three of the ground’s stands were re-built during the ‘90s, so facilities aren’t as bad as they could be but they are starting to show their age. The seats are quite tight, but the views are generally pretty good. On the concourses you’ll find places to buy a bite to eat and get a drink that open about an hour and a half before kick-off and shut fifteen minutes into the second half.

Prices

  • Programme: 3.00
  • Pie: 3.60
  • Cup of tea: 2.20
  • Beer: 3.60

Hospitality

By Peter Bonnett (originally posted to Flickr as WalkerSteel stand) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

There are a number of hospitality suites at Ewood Park that you can choose from. Here are some of your options:

  • The Premier Suite - This is the most prestigious lounge available and offers a three-course meal, half-time refreshments and access to a licensed pay bar. You can also go for either inside viewing or padded seats in The Jack Walker Stand. Oh, and you’ll get a welcome drink when you turn up, too.
  • The Legends Lounge - This lounge offers you a more informal setting than The Premier Suite, with a one-course pub style meal and a pay bar.
  • Jack’s Kitchen - Here you’ll enjoy a three-course meal of traditional British classics as well as a pay bar and half-time refreshments.

Private Hire

The number of executive boxes and premium lounges at Ewood Park mean that there are plenty of options for your private hire needs. Private meetings, conferences with breakout rooms and even weddings can all be held at the home of Blackburn Rovers, with the dedicated team able to help you every step of the way.

Stadium Tours & Museum

Tours of Ewood park tend to run on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays and last about an hour. As you’d expect you’ll take in some of the most exclusive parts of the stadium including the changing rooms, the tunnel and the dug-out. You’ll also see the press room and some of the hospitality suites, plus you’ll get a chance to have your photo taken with that most sought after of all trophies, the Premier League.

Tours need to be pre-booked, so make sure you get in touch with the club before you go. The tour costs £7.50 for adults and £4.50 for concessions, with the club also offering tours for ten people or more for £3.95 per person and they also do family tickets.

About Blackburn Rovers

The Blackburn Rovers, FA Cup winners in 1883-84 - See page for author [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Established in 1875, Blackburn Rovers were one of the founding members of the Football League when it was established in 1888. Along with Aston Villa and Everton it is one of only three clubs that helped to found both the Premier League and the Football League. In 1992 they appointed former Liverpool hero and managerial maestro Kenny Dalglish as manager. Within three years he achieved the ultimate prize, winning the Premier League title in the last game of the season - at Anfield of all places. They are the only club apart from the ‘big four’ of Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City to win the title since the top-tier was re-formed as the Premier League.

The club has a motto which in Latin is ‘Arte et Labore’, but when translated to English becomes ‘by skill and hard work’. They have won the FA Cup six times, most recently in 1928. They won the League Cup a little bit more recently that that in 2002, whilst they won the UEFA Intertoto Cup in 2007. Although their Premier League win is the most famous of their trophies they’ve actually won the top-tier of the English game three times and finished as runners-up in the Premier League the year before they won it.

Ewood Park History

The old main stand at Ewood Park 1985 - Steve Daniels [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Football was played at Ewood Park from as early as 1881 when it was known as Ewood Bridge. Back then, though, it was little more than a field and didn’t get officially opened as Ewood Park until 1882. When Blackburn Rovers moved there in 1890 they signed a ten year lease of the land for an annual rent of £60. They bought the freehold for £2500 in 1893 but almost immediately suffered disaster when part of a stand collapsed when Everton were visiting and the fixture attracted a crowd of over 20,000.

When Jack Walker sold Walkersteel to British Steel for £330 million in 1989 he decided he wanted to invest in a football club and that Blackburn Rovers was the club for him. He immediately went about completely changing the fortunes of the Lancashire side, starting with the overhaul of their crumbling old stadium. In June of 1992 the local council approved plans for a new 31,000 seat development and in November of 1995 it was officially opened.

Future Developments

There have long been plans to redevelop The RFS Riverside Stand, the oldest part of the stadium. It would see Ewood Park’s capacity increase to around 41,000, but is unlikely to happen unless the club can re-establish themselves in the Premier League as attendances have dropped off regularly since their relegation from the top-flight of English football.

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