1. 1. Why you were
looking forward to going to the ground:
First visit to Chesterfields Proact Stadium.
2. How easy was your journey/finding the
We drove from North Wales (exiled Southend fans)
via M56, A6, A623, A619, A61, 170 miles round
trip, clear roads taking 2 hours to make the
journey each way. It was misty and drizzly raining
en-route, but there is superb scenery through the
Derbyshire Dales, and a view of the famous twisted
church spire on arrival. We checked the
Chesterfield FC website and found maps indicating
parking places. Arriving early ensured easy
parking which is limited on match days.
The ground was easy to
find although not many signs. We found street
parking to the north of the stadium in Thompson
Street by turning right after passing the ground.
3. What you did before
the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
We took a packed meal with us and sat in car after
a walk round outside of the ground. We then waited
20 minutes at the ticket office to collect our
tickets which Southend United had sent up on the
coach as the office said they hadnít got any for
us. The few home fans we met whilst collecting
tickets from their office were friendly. The
tickets were eventually traced and we entered the
impressive Proact stadium relieved.
4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first
impressions of away end then other sides of the
The stadium appears larger than the 10,400
capacity would indicate. The stadium is a modern
and all seated and smart. We noticed two staff
even walking amongst seats giving them a wipe
clean. The away end is all seated and although the
whole of the away end was available, the stewards
insisted that the 360 or so Southend fans should
sit in the centre section behind the goal. The
view is unobstructed and there is plenty of leg
room, The electronic scoreboard is above the away
end on the roof and can only be seen by the home
fans which was disappointing. The pitch was
pristine and even though it was early season in
August it appeared that it had never had football
played on it.
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere,
stewards, pies, facilities etc.
In a tight game between 2 top 5 sides,
Chesterfield took the lead in the 2nd half with a
Gary Roberts free kick, but Southend soon levelled
via a well worked Freddy Eastwood goal. 6 minutes
injury time surprised everyone and in the 85th
minute Chesterfield won the match from a corner.
The atmosphere was quiet until the last minute
winner with both sets of expectant fans watching a
tense game, even though only the 4th fixture of
the new season. The stewards were ok but one
seemed to delight in letting people find a seat
and then waving frantically to tell them to sit
only in the centre section.
If the seats had been taped off as other clubs do,
it would have made life easier for all concerned.
Pies looked good at £3 and there was plenty of
room to stand and eat or drink on the concourse
behind the seating with television showing a live
game. It was a warm sunny day with little or no
wind, which made for a pleasant afternoon in a new
football stadium with both sides getting the ball
down and attempting to play good passing football.
6. Comment on getting away from the ground after
It was easy to get away from the ground and main
roads were clearly sign posted.
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
We had a mostly enjoyable day out, visiting a
smart stadium, despite the shock of losing in
injury time. The weather was pleasantly warm after
a drizzly misty start to the day.
Match Attendance 5,579
Result: Chesterfield 2-1 Southend.