Caledonian Stadium: Inverness Caledonian Thistle

Stadium Road, Inverness, IV1 1FF, Scotland

Inverness Caledonian Thistle Football Club, better known as Inverness CT, was formed in 1994 when Caledonian and Inverness Thistle were merged in order to apply for one of the places available in the newly re-structured Scottish Football League. They were indeed accepted into the Football League structure, but on the proviso that they built a new stadium. That new stadium, you will have guessed, became Caledonian Stadium.

Currently known as Tulloch Caledonian Stadium because of sponsorship, the area the ground was built on was one of a four strong shortlist, and it was finally chosen when the Highland Council gave its blessing to a site called East Longman. The new ground was supposed to be built by 1995 but the Scottish Football League extended that deadline to 1996 in order to allow certain funding complications to be overcome. It opened officially in November 1996.

Stats

Caledonian Stadium Stats
Year Opened1996
Capacity7,750
Average Attendance2,406
Record Attendance7,753 (Inverness CT v Rangers (2008))
Pitch Size105 x 68 (7140)
Former NameCaledonian Stadium
SponsorTulloch
Clubs HostedInverness Caledonian Thistle FC
First FixtureInverness CT v Albion Rovers (09/11/1996)
Inverness Caledonian Thistle Stats
Year Founded1994
NicknameCaley Thistle, Caley Jags, The Pride of the Highlands
Club MascotInverNessie
RivalsRoss County, Aberdeen
KitBlue & Red Stripe (Home) / White & Black (Away)
Shirt SponsorMcEwan Fraser Legal
Record GoalscorerDennis Wyness (81)
Record AppearancesRoss Tokely (456)

Caledonian Stadium Photos

Caledonian Stadium Seating Plan & Where to Sit

ICT v St.Mirren - Colin Wilson [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The North Stand, also known as Bridge End, is a single-tier structure behind one of the goals. It stands opposite The South Stand which is similar in layout but houses the away supporters. The West Stand runs along one side of the pitch and is a small, uncovered section capable of seating about 400 fans. The Jock McDonald Main Stand houses the dressing rooms, the dugouts and the players’ tunnel.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle Ticket Prices

There are two things that will decide how much your ticket to see Inverness CT will cost - your age and where in the ground you would like to sit. The main stand is the more expensive area, with tickets for the North and South stand being a little cheaper as follows:

  • Adults: £20.00 - £22.00
  • Concessions: £15.00 - £17.00

It's useful to know that under 12's can get into the North stand for free with an accompanying adult.

How To Get Inverness Caledonian Thistle Tickets

Tickets are available through Inverness CT’s official website, over the phone or by calling into the stadium ticket office in person. For most of the games you’ll be able to pick up a ticket on the gate, too. Transaction charges apply at £1.50, and there's a cheeky 70p charge if you want your tickets posted to you.

Where to Buy

Getting To Caledonian Stadium

Inverness is in the Scottish Highlands, so it’s unlikely that you’ll happen to stumble across the place on your travels. That said, it isn’t exactly a faraway and distant land, so you’ll still be able to make it there using one of these routes:

Train - A train from London King’s Cross to Inverness will take about eight hours with a change in Edinburgh. You’ll then have a half an hour walk to the stadium. So hopefully you don't live in London, because that sounds like a nightmare.

Bus - A match day special runs from Farraline Park Bus Station to the ground every time there’s a game, which is very handy indeed.

Car - Once you’re in the region of the city you’ll want to take the A9 to the Longman roundabout before following signs to the ground.

By Air - Inverness Airport is just under ten miles from the city centre and mostly handles internal flights from the UK.

Taxi - A taxi from the train station to the ground will take just under ten minutes and will cost about £5.

Parking Near Caledonian Stadium

There is a decent sized car park at each end of the ground, meaning that parking should be easy enough as long as its not one of the Category A matches that you’re going to. If it is then you might be better off having a look to see if there’s any on-street parking available nearby.

Useful Resources

Caledonian Stadium Hotels

Inverness is a lovely part of Scotland, but not necessarily one of the most commonly visited. There are still plenty of hotels to look at, though, starting with these:

Caberfeidh B&B - £50+

6 Millburn Road, Inverness, IV2 3PS
This small bed and breakfast only has three rooms, but it’s just fifteen minutes walk from Caledonian Stadium so it’s worth considering. There’s also free Wi-Fi, free parking, a garden and a full breakfast included in the price. More details.

Mercure Inverness Hotel - £70+

Church Street, Inverness, IV1 1DX
This member of the Mercure chain of hotels is about ten minutes away from the ground and offers a restaurant, a bar, a fitness centre, a business centre, meeting rooms, self-parking and there’s free Wi-Fi available too. More details.

Best Western Inverness Palace Hotel & Spa - £85+

8 Ness Walk, Inverness, IV3 5NG
This riverfront hotel is the furtherest from the stadium, but it’s still only a twenty minute walk away. It’s also worth the travel as it’s got a restaurant, a bar, a full-service spa including an indoor pool, a fitness centre, meeting rooms and free Wi-Fi. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Caledonian Stadium

Inverness is at the top end of Loch Ness, so expect many monster themed bars and apocryphal (google it) tales from the locals. Here are some of our favourite watering holes:

Blackfriars Highland Pub

93-95 Academy Street, Inverness, IV1 1LU (01463 233881)
Built in 1793, this traditional pub boasts a beautiful mahogany bar and plenty of hand-pulled ales. There’s also some tasty original Scottish food for your consideration. Haggis, anyone?

The Kings Highway

The Kings Highway72-74 Church Street, Inverness, IV1 1EN (+44 1463 251800)
Some people really enjoy soaking up local traditions and atmospheres. Others prefer the tried and the tested, and that’s who The Kings Highway is for. It’s a Wetherspoon establishment, so you’ll get all of the cheap drinks, cheap food and eclectic clientele that you’d find in one of these anywhere else in the UK.

Johnny Foxes

26 Bank Street, Inverness, IV1 1QU (+44 1463 236577)
This traditional style pub and restaurant has a nice outside area, a decent menu and plenty of real ales. It also has a sister wine bar and night club located not far away, should that be the sort of thing you enjoy.

Facilities

The ground is now over twenty years old, but it’s still reasonably modern compared to a lot of other stadiums. There are plenty of places to buy food and drink and the view is decent from pretty much everywhere, though The West Stand is not exactly flush with top-notch facilities. Or even a roof.

Prices

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

Hospitality

Caledonian Stadium (right) from the air - Stephen Branley [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The main hospitality option at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium will see you enjoy fine dining through a hot buffet, seating in The Jock McDonald Main Stand, a complimentary bar, half-time refreshments, a talk from the manager and an opportunity to meet the Man Of The Match after the game. This is available on a match by match basis so is a good option for birthdays and celebrations - only if you are a fan obviously, otherwise it would be a bit of an odd choice.

Private Hire

There are a range of function suites at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium that are available for hire depending on your event. Whether you’re hoping to host a banquet, a dinner, a conference, a party or a business meeting, there are plenty of different options at the home of Inverness Caledonian Thistle. There are three rooms available, with the biggest able to host up to 180 people.

Stadium Tours & Museum

At the time of writing there are not tours of Tulloch Caledonian Stadium available and there is no museum. If either of those things we’ll let you know. Promise.

About Inverness Caledonian Thistle

Inverness win the Scottish Football League First Division in May 2010 - By W. L. Tarbert (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

Inverness Thistle and Caledonian were both well-established members of the Highland Football League when they decided to join forces in 1994. The decision was made because a restructuring of the Scottish Football League saw four divisions each welcoming ten teams. They wanted a piece of that action but weren’t likely to be able to make it on their own, so they became one club and applied for membership. It was granted, so the newly formed club entered the Scottish Third Division alongside their Highland rivals Ross County.

The club was initially called Caledonian Thistle, but it changed to become Inverness Caledonian Thistle in 1996 after Inverness District Council requested as much. Ironically, nowadays the ‘Caledonian Thistle’ part is rarely said, with people preferring to shorten it to CT. The club has enjoyed a fair bit of success during its short existence, having won the second-tier title twice, the Scottish Cup once and finished as runner-up in the Scottish League Cup in 2014.

Caledonian Stadium History

When the two clubs formed to create Caledonian Thistle they originally played their games at Telford Street Park, the home of Caledonian. Part of the agreement to allow them into the Football League, however, entailed the building of a new stadium by 1995. This took longer than expected, not opening until Albion Rovers arrived to play Inverness Caledonian Thistle in November of 1996.

Celebrations when the club won the Scottish First Division in 2004 were muted when it was realised that the stadium didn’t meet the requirements necessary to allow the club to play in the Scottish Premier League. The league’s stadium criteria insisted that grounds have 10,000 seats, and Caledonian Park only had 2,280. The club played their games at the home of Aberdeen while changes were made to the ground, bringing it up to scratch and allowing Inverness CT to compete in the Scottish top-flight from a home of their own.

Future Developments

At the time of writing there are no major developments intended for Tulloch Caledonian Stadium.

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