New Bucks Head - Telford United
Tuesday, September 13th 2011
V Luton Town, Blue Square Premier 3pm
Only two new grounds for me this season and this was one of them so always a highlight to go somewhere new but this trip surpassed all expectations. I drove to Wellington for this game as it was an evening match and booked in to the Cock Hotel a mere five minutes walk from the ground.
Not only was this convenient for the stadium but it also stocked an excellent range of real ales and was a very friendly pub with fans of both clubs mixing before kick off. It was also a great place to stay, highly recommended from all perspectives. The following day the landlady of the hotel commented on what a great atmosphere there was in the pub that night despite the advance negative publicity, that seems to surround surface in advance of a Luton fixture.
On the way to the ground there was an absurdly over the top Police presence. This is often the case at Luton away games. Which given there hasn’t been any serious disorder at any game away for a long long time now, this was totally unwarranted but it didn’t spoil the evening and I would have thought that it won’t be an issue of the vast majority of teams visiting the New Bucks Head.
The ground itself is one of the best modern grounds I’ve been to, unlike the usual dull shed designs this has elegant curved roofs at both ends and whilst small is perfectly adequate for what Telford need. The colour scheme of blue and white also makes the ground look very neat and all in all it is far better ground than many bigger grounds in the league, sort of like a mini Huddersfield.
The away end appeared identical to the home end and was not very deep but given it was not a huge following that night there was plenty of room. The atmosphere was good, relaxed and friendly inside and out (except the police as previously mentioned).
Getting away was easy and I was back in the Cock Hotel before 10 to have a celebratory drink for the 2-1 win I’d just seen. For drivers it is very close to the M54 so easy to get away I would think but can’t comment on parking although I did notice the club car park is located behind the opposite end to the away stand. I did overhear some Luton fans asking if it was okay to leave their car in the Cock Hotel car park to which the answer was in the affirmative so that’s handy to know if you get there early enough.
I would certainly recommend any conference fan making the effort to visit this ground to see their team away or anyone league fan wanting to experience the non-league at its best, I will certainly go again if (as seems ever more likely with every passing week) Luton are in the conference again next season!
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