you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may
Though I've been to Oakwell many times over the years, this was the FA Cup
3rd Round, and so it was a 'must see'. However,
our away form has been abysmal in recent times, so in honesty, we were
hoping for at most a battling draw, and at worst a heavy defeat which
could easily have brought further calls for the head of our manager,
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking:
The trip is straightforward enough, and takes a little under a couple of
hours. Traffic was relatively light both on the motorway
and in Barnsley itself. I parked on what I presume was a dedicated Away
Car Park which was shared by the Official Coaches from Walsall.
3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
The Home fans seemed friendly enough around the ground. I have ventured in
to the centre before, though I didn't on the day of this game. On advice
from around the internet I avoided the majority of local pubs, instead
drinking at the local sports centre which had a decent bar, though it was
absolutely packed - mainly by away fans - by half past one.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end
then other sides of the ground:
I've always been a fan of Oakwell, especially since they redeveloped the
North Stand. Its always cold though! So Wrap up warm!
Their main stand and floodlights are a great throwback to the old
days, and it was great to see a club keep their traditional floodlights
rather than opt for the modern style. The Away
Stand is massive, and our 600 strong support struggled to make it look
full. However, I have noted that there are great acoustics in the away
stand, another rarity in modern stands.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere,
stewards, pies, toilets etc..
The game itself was high paced and kept the atmosphere bubbling. The
stewards seemed more over-zealous in the home end, as a chap was thrown
out within 10 minutes of the start. There was one incident in the away end
as a Walsall fan was warned for banging his seat, but all in all, the
stewards kept themselves to themselves and did theIr
job when they needed to.
Walsall fans are something of an enigma - deafeningly quiet at home,
deafeningly loud away, and they certainly made the most noise of the two
sets of fans. However, there were only 6,500
fans in what is a rather large ground, and the weather was grotty. Having
attended many Walsall - Barnsley games, I know they follow a similar
pattern to ourselves - quiet at home, noisy away.
The food was fine, though I thought a little pricy. 80p for a
Yorkie and over a pound for a smallish portion of chips. Pies were about
£2.80 I think. As you would expect in a new
stand, facilities were perfectly adequate, though the away end betting
office was situated outside of the concourse, involving a trip out in to
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game
Once out of the car park we were back on the motorway in no time, however,
the away supporters car park was very full and took a good 20 minutes to
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out
A day out in Yorkshire can be a mixed bag - from the excellent in
Sheffield, to the more depressing in Rotherham! Barnsley is a nice
alternative, which is complemented by a nice ground to go to and nice
people to chat to.