Widnes Vikings Travel Pack by Joshua Chapman (@Chapalar)
This Thursday evening, the Cougars make the trip across the pennines to Chesire as they travel to the Select Security Stadium to take on Super League outfit Widnes Vikings in the Quarter Finals of the 2014 Tetley’s Challenge Cup. Here is all you need to know if you’re going to Widnes:
PRICES ARE AS FOLLOWS:
£10 – Adults
£5 – Childs
FREE – Concessions
Tickets for this fixture are no longer available to buy from the club, it is now strictly pay on the day at Widnes upon arrival.
Widnes Rugby League Football Club had a number of grounds before settling at Lowerhouse Lane in 1895. The death of the club’s secretary, Tom Naughton in 1932, led to the ground being renamed Naughton Park as a gesture of the team’s appreciation.
Naughton Park became one of the best known Rugby League grounds in the country due to the success of the ‘Chemics’.
It was agreed that Halton Council in partnership with the Widnes would build a new stadium on the existing site, which would provide a multi-purpose complex including a social club, conference facilities, recreational facilities and catering/function facilities and would be the new home venue for Widnes RLFC. The stadium was officially opened on 2 November 1997 following the completion of phase 1 of a multi-million pound redevelopment of the old Naughton Park site.
On 29 January 1999 Halton Borough Council took over responsibility for the entire stadium, both financially and managerially. This was necessary as the joint venture companies arrangements were not performing as expected.
The stadium reached completion with the opening of the East Stand in September 2005 and is an all-seater stadium which has a capacity of 13,500. It has also had the honour to have staged national finals and international fixtures.
Following Widnes’ purchase by local business man Steve O’Connor, The Halton Stadium was renamed to the ‘Stobart Stadium Halton’ at a Fans Forum on 6 December 2007. By February 2008 the stadium was given a ‘facelift’ in preparation for the Superleague Licenses, with the North Stand seats arranged to spell out “VIKINGS”, West Stand seats to advertise main sponsors STOBART and East Stand to advertise local authority Halton Borough Council as part of the stadium sponsorship deal. The South Stand seats were left out until a sponsorship arrangement could be arranged.
In August 2011, the stadium turf was removed and replaced with a third generation artificial pitch (or ipitch as it became known), in order to improve overall match performance and maximize the use of the clubs facilities.
With Stobart electing not to renew sponsorship of the stadium during the 2013 season, a new sponsor was revealed and the stadium was renamed The Select Security Stadium. The West Stand seats therefore were re-arranged in order to advertise the stadiums new main sponsor – Select Security.
The Widnes Rugby League Museum is an impressive facility, situated in the East Stand of the Stobart Stadium Halton. It was originally opened in 2007 and is home to a wonderful collection of memorabilia much of it donated by members of the public, and displays a fine history of Widnes RLFC.
WHERE TO EAT AND DRINK:
The concourses in all four stands are well equipped with bars where food and drink is served, there are also vending machines. There is a McDonalds approximately five minutes walk from the stadium, while ASDA and KFC are about a ten minute walk in the opposite dircetion.
Pubs on the way would be the Crown (near the Train Station) and the Albion (near the ground). If you’ve got members of your party with difficulty walking then a taxi from the Crown would be an inexpensive alternative.
WHERE TO PARK:
The ground is surrounded by an housing estate, although spaces are taken very quickly. The town centre isn’t far from the ground and the local ASDA also has a number of spaces. However, you should find adequate parking spaces in side streets within ten minute walks from the ground. There is a small stadium car park, but this is reserved for permit holders.
There are a small number of spaces on both the Main (South Stand) car park and East Stand facility. These are offered on a strictly ‘first come first served basis’ and unfortunately, spaces cannot be reserved in advance.
BY CAR, POSTCODE FOR THE SAT NAV:
SUGGESTED ROUTE: (80.9 miles, 1hr 34min)
Head east on Royd Ings Avenue toward Alston Road.
Turn right onto Alston Road.
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Airevalley Road/A650. (Continue to follow A650, Go through two roundabouts)
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto B6265.
Turn left onto Cottingley New Road/B6146. (Continue to follow B6146, Go through two roundabouts)
At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Bradford Old Road/B6269. (Continue to follow B6269)
Continue straight onto Toller Lane/B6144.
Turn right to stay on Toller Lane/B6144.
Take the 1st left to stay on Toller Lane/B6144. (Continue to follow B6144)
At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Westgate/B6144. (Continue to follow B6144)
At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Westgate/B6144. (Continue to follow Westgate)
Turn right onto Godwin Street/A6181.
Slight left onto Prince’s Way/A6181.
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Manchester Road/A641.
Slight left toward Mayo Avenue/A6177.
Continue straight onto Mayo Avenue/A6177. (Continue to follow A6177)
Slight right onto Chase Way.
Continue onto M606 (signs for M62/M1).
Merge onto M62.
Continue onto M60.
At junction 12, exit toward M62/Birmingham/Chester/M6.
Merge onto M62.
At junction 7, take the A57/A570/A557 exit to Prescot/St Helens/Widnes.
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Watkinson Way/A557. (Continue to follow A557)
Slight right onto Ashley Way/A557/A562. (Continue to follow Ashley Way/A562)
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit.
At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto Lower House Lane.
Destination will be on your right.
The clubs official supporters coach details are now available elsewhere here on the Cougars website. Priced at £10, contact Gary or Wendy to book onto the coach.
Due to a severe lack of public transport following the conclusion of the tie, the club would advise against the use of public transport to this fixture.