Bolton Wanderers

Macron Stadium

Capacity: 28,723 (all seated)
Address: Burnden Way, Horwich, Bolton, BL6 6JW
Telephone: 0844 871 2932
Fax: 0844 871 2932
Ticket Office: 0844 871 2932
Stadium Tours: 01204 673 650
Pitch Size: 105 x 68 metres
Club Nickname: The Trotters
Year Ground Opened: 1997
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Shirt Sponsors: ROK Mobile
Kit Manufacturer: Macron
Home Kit: White and Navy Blue
Away Kit: Black with Gold Trim

External View
External View
West Stand
West Stand
Nat Lofthouse Stand
Nat Lofthouse Stand
North Stand
North Stand
South Stand
South Stand
Nat Lofthouse Statue
Nat Lofthouse Statue

The stadium built by Birse Construction was opened as the Reebok Stadium in 1997 and renamed the Macron Stadium, in another corporate sponsorship deal in 2014. From the outside the stadium looks simply stunning and can be seen for miles around. I still think the view of it driving down the slip road from the M61 motorway, is one of the greatest sights to be seen in English football, especially when it is lit up at night. It has a great eye catching design and is unlike anything else in the country.

The inside is functional and tidy, but not unsurprisingly lacks the wow factor of the stadium's external appearance. It is totally enclosed and each stand has a conventional rectangular lower tier, with a semi circular upper tier above. Situated between the two tiers is a row of executive boxes. Above the stands there is a gap between the back of the stands and the roof to allow additional light to reach the pitch. The roofs are then topped with some diamond shaped floodlights that sit above a striking supporting tubular steel supporting structure. There is large video screen in one corner, situated between the South and Nat Lofthouse Stands. One unusual feature of the ground is that the teams emerge from separate tunnels on either side of the halfway line. Outside the stadium is a statue of former player and legend Nat Lofthouse.

Away fans are housed in the two tiered South Stand at one end of the ground, where up to 5,000 supporters can be accommodated, although the normal allocation is nearer 3,000. The lower tier is shared with home supporters, but the upper tier is given entirely to away fans. The leg room and facilities within this stand are good and the atmosphere is boosted in the home end by the presence of a drummer. Alex Smith adds; 'away fans should note that the bottom rows of the lower tier are not covered by the roof and therefore you may get wet if it rains'. Whilst Paul Kelly warns; 'the stewards at the stadium can be a bit over zealous, often throwing out fans for little reason. My advice to away fans is do not even think about celebrating a goal by going further forward than the front row. They'll have you even if you're just on the bit of track behind the adverts. Also you may be told to sit down during the game, take heed and do so. Fans have been removed who persistently stand up during the game'.

I was particularly impressed with the stadium and for the first time in this country, I felt I could have easily been sitting in a comparable stadium in the United States. The refreshment facilities are good (albeit queuing times can be long on occasion) and I wish that other clubs would copy the way that supporters in the Reebok are served. There are proper queuing barriers and exit lanes. One person takes the order and deals with the money, whilst another prepares your order at the same time. Simple when you think about it, it is just a pity that other clubs seem to think that supporters enjoy the lottery of being in the scrum that develops around the refreshment kiosk. Food on offer includes a range of Holland's "Big Eat" Pies; Chicken Balti, Peppered Steak, Potato and Meat, Cheese Potato and Onion (all £2.90), Cheeseburgers (£3.50), Chicken Wraps (£3.80) and Hot Dogs (£3.50).

The stadium is certainly one of the best in England, although a capacity of under 30,000 means that it is on the small side compared to other stadia. There is 125 room hotel located behind the away end of the ground, 19 of which have views of the pitch. I just wonder if any of the hotel guests occupying these rooms may at some time put on their own half time show! 

The main pub for away fans is the Beehive, which is about a 10-15 minute walk away from the away turnstiles. It is a good sized pub that also serves food. You can also park your car there (see below). Also there is the Barnstormers pub on Lostock Lane (from the M61, go past the stadium on your left, move into the right hand filter lane and turn right at the traffic lights into Lostock Lane, the pub is down on the right) which does admit away fans. There is also a mixture of street parking and paid parking (at some industrial units) in this area.

Otherwise alcohol is served within the ground, although for some games such as local derbies, the Club opt not to sell any. Alcohol available inside the ground, includes; Worthington's Bitter (£3.40), Carling Lager (£3.50), Magners Cider (£3.70), Guinness (£3.80) Red or White Wine (£4). In another good move then the Club allow your to pre-order and pay for your half time drinks, before the game has kicked off, through the purchase of tokens. Thus making it quicker to get your hands on your interval liquid refreshments. 

There are a number of bars on the nearby Middlebrook Retail Park (the Macron Stadium is on the Middlebrook Retail estate). However most of these have bouncers on the doors that only admit home fans on production of a matchday or season ticket, There are though plenty of eating outlets on the Retail Park; KFC, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Subway and a Bolton Wanderers themed McDonalds as well as several other themed restaurants. 

From The South: M6 to Junction 21a, take eastbound M62 leaving at Junction 12. Follow signs for M61 (Bolton/Preston) and leave the M61 motorway at Junction 6. The ground is visible from this junction and is clearly sign posted.

From The North: M6 to Junction 29 and take the M65 towards Blackburn. Leave the M65 at junction two and join the M61 towards Manchester. Leave the M61 at junction six. The ground is visible from this junction and is clearly sign posted.

John Walsh adds; 'Because of traffic congestion on the M60 (formerly M62),  caused by the Trafford Centre, I would recommend that those supporters travelling from the South should take the North directions above. It is about 10 miles further but can save 30 minutes and a lot of frustration!'

Car Parking

There is a car park at the ground, but this costs £6 for cars (£12 for minbuses). Plus on my last visit the cars in the away section of the car park were packed in like sardines, meaning that away fans leaving early (my team had just been stuffed!) couldn't get a quick getaway as there were cars blocking them in. However a lot of the surrounding industrial estate units offer cheaper parking, usually around the £4-£5 mark. Some of these are located on either side of Lostock Lane. From the M61, go past the stadium on your left, move into the right hand filter lane and turn right at the traffic lights into Lostock Lane. If you continue down Lostock Lane and take a left hand turn before to the Bromilow Arms, then I noticed on my last visit that there was some street parking to be had at the bottom of this road. Neil Casson a visiting Tottenham Hotspur fan informs me; 'I've been to Bolton a couple times and parked at a factory unit on Cranfield Road, which is the first right off Lostock Lane. Its the first unit on the right as you enter Cranfield Road costs £3.50 and it's staffed for the duration of the game. Away fans are located in the South Stand, so it's just a short walk back to your car. The official car parks seem to be well snarled up and parking I recommend parking just away from the ground if you want a quick getaway'. 

Gary Lovatt adds 'On the parking front, a handy little idea is to park at the Beehive pub which is on the roundabout (half a mile past the stadium coming from the motorway) where you pay £5 per car but get it all back at the bar. I also recommend the cajun chicken baguette there!' To get to the Beehive leave the M61 at Junction 6 and drive down towards the stadium. Then continue straight on past the stadium and the Beehive pub is situated at the next roundabout, on Chorley New Road. 

Whilst Mark Pickering suggests; 'St Joseph's school on Chorley New Road, offers parking on matchdays at £4 per car. On reaching the roundabout with the Beehive pub, turn left and St Joseph's School is on the left hand side after about 250 yards. There is a path way from the school leading down to the stadium - allowing fairly rapid entrance and exit to and from the ground.'

Post Ccode for SAT NAV: BL6 6JW

Horwich Parkway railway station serves the stadium, with regular trains from Bolton's main railway station. Horwich Parkway is only a few minutes walk from the stadium.

Remember if travelling by train then you can save on the cost of fares by booking in advance.

Visit the the trainline website to see how much you can normally save.

Click on the trainline logo below:

Bolton operate a category system of ticket pricing (A, B & C) whereby the most popular matches will cost more to watch than the least popular ones. Category A prices are shown below with Category B & C shown in brackets:

Home Fans:
East & West Stands (Upper Tier Centre):
Adults £35 (B £32) (C £29), Over 65's/Under 23's £25 (B £22) (C £19), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
East & West Stands (Upper Tier Wings):
Adults £33 (B £28) (C £25), Over 65's/Under 23's £23 (B £20) (C £17), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
East & West Stands (Lower Tier Centre): 
Adults £33 (B £28) (C £25), Over 65's/Under 23's £23 (B £20) (C £17), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9) 
East & West Stands (Lower Tier Wings): 
Adults £30 (B £26) (C £24), Over 65's/Under 23's £22 (B £19) (C £16), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
North Stand (Upper Tier): 
Adults £33 (B £28) (C £25), Over 65's/Under 23's £23 (B £20) (C £17), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
North Stand (Lower Tier): 
Adults £28 (B £25) (C £23), Over 65's/Under 23's £22 (B £18) (C £16), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
Family Area (North Stand Upper Tier): 
1 Adult + 1 Under 18 £39 (B £32) (C £28), 2 Adults + 2 Under 18's £78 (B £64) (C £56)

Away Fans:
South Stand (Upper Tier): 
Adults £33 (B £28) (C £25), Over 65's/Under 23's £23 (B £20) (C £17), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9)
South Stand (Lower Tier): 
Adults £28 (B £25) (C £23), Over 65's/Under 23's £22 (B £18) (C £16), Under 18's £12 (B £10) (C £9) 

Bolton Wanderers Fixture List (takes you to the BBC Sports Website).

Official Programme: £3
White Love Fanzine £1
Tripes & Trotters Fanzine £1

Manchester United, Manchester City, Bury, Blackburn, Wigan, Preston and from a little further a field; Tranmere Rovers.

Record Attendance

At The Macron Stadium: 28,353 v Leicester City Premier League, December 28th 2003.

At Burnden Park: 69,912 v Manchester City  FA Cup 5th Round, February 18th, 1933.

Average Attendance
2014-2015: 15,413 (Championship League)
2013-2014: 16,141 (Championship League)
2012-2013: 18,034 (Premier League)

 For details of disabled facilities and club contact at the ground please visit the relevant page on the 
Level Playing Field website.

If you require hotel accommodation in the area then first try a hotel booking service provided by Late Rooms. They offer all types of accommodation to suit all tastes and pockets from; Budget Hotels, Traditional Bed & Breakfast establishments to Five Star Hotels and Serviced Apartments. Plus their booking system is straightforward and easy to use. Yes this site will earn a small commission if you book through them, but it will go to help with the running costs of keeping the Guide going. The Hotels listing also includes details of how far away the accommodation is located from the football ground. 

Visit their Bolton Hotels & Guest Houses page.

Remember that you can use the above link or panel below to book any other hotels that you may need for business or leisure, either in the UK or abroad.

Bolton Wanderers v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Championship League
Saturday 31 January 2015, 3pm
Aimee Henry (Wolves fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

A chance to tick another ground off my list, and we were going there with an unbeaten 7 game run, stretching back to before Christmas. There’s always a bit of needle between England’s two most recognisable Wanderers (apologies to Wycombe), possibly going back to an ill-tempered play-off game in the mid-90s. I’m just slightly too young to remember it, apologies again If that makes you feel old! The ticket sales for the away end finished at just a smidgeon over 2,000, so it was set to be a good atmosphere in the away end. £28 a ticket is about the going rate for the Championship, I’ve paid more, I’ve paid less.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Decided to use the trains to get to this one. We split the journey a couple of times when booking the tickets, and got returns from Wolverhampton to Horwich Parkway for a little over £30, which is not too bad. The first train took us from Wolverhampton to Manchester Piccadilly, and after a short wait there, time for the toilet and a bar of chocolate, we went from Manchester Piccadilly to Bolton, then Bolton to Horwich Parkway. The travelling time was roughly two and a quarter hours. The ground is a short walk from Horwich Parkway station, just leave the main exit and it’s a straight walk to the Macron, which is visible from the station. From the quick glance at the timetables, the latter two trains in our journey run at a fairly regular rate, and it’s worth paying the couple of extra pounds to get a return valid for all journeys, should you be running late for any reason.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

I had a little walk around the ground, then decided to venture into Bolton’s rather snazzy club shop. Like most these days, it sold a mixture of replica gear, and your usual tat. A 50p bag of sweets has Bolton’s logo stamped on it, so becomes a £2 bag of sweets, you can have a Bolton Wanderers themed duvet and pillowcase, a Bolton Wanderers lunchbox, a Bolton Wanderers pencil case. Another interesting one was the signed photo of manager Neil Lennon. Priced at £45, it was perhaps a little more than I’d be prepared to pay…

The home fans were reasonably friendly, one middle aged man noticed my Wolves scarf and we had a brief chat about our respective seasons. I’d suggest the location and facilities around the ground mean that Bolton fans have little reason to mill around before kickoff, hence there weren’t an awful lot of them around.

There is a big retail park on which the Macron is situated, and plenty of places to eat. McDonalds, KFC, Nando’s, plus both a Tesco and an Asda. On the walk from the train station to the Macron you also pass two bars, including a Harvester. Amongst our travelling party was my teetotal dad and my brother who was attempting to avoid alcohol throughout the month of January, so we didn’t venture into the pub. What surprised me was the lack of food outlets outside the ground. I guess we’re spoilt at Molineux, where on a matchday you can’t move for burger vans, emitting that pungent yet wonderful aroma of frying onions. I often think Chanel should do that as a perfume, as in my experiences that’s a far more attractive smell to men than anything I’ve ever worn…

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is situated on a retail park, and to be blunt, if you didn’t know, you wouldn’t assume that the Macron was a football stadium. With its curved roofs and glass fronts, it looks initially like a cross between a Conference Centre and an Olympic swimming pool. Once you get closer though, and see the turnstiles and Bolton crests adorning the walls, you’ll realise it’s the stadium. The stadium takes the form of a large bowl shape, and feels very modern.

My favourite thing about it was the wonderful tribute to Nat Lofthouse. As well as a very nice statue, the area around it is where Bolton home their supporter bricks. For anyone unfamiliar with these, many clubs offer fans the chance to purchase a brick, have a message or a name put onto it, and it will be used somewhere around the stadium, visible for everyone. At Wolves, we have ours making up a wall outside the ticket office, which is slightly underwhelming I’ll have to be honest, but here the Bolton ones were right next to a statue of a man who must have meant so much to those fans, which I thought was a lovely touch.

Nat Lofthouse Statue

Nat Lofthouse Statue

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc...

The game itself was a fairly dull one, between two teams having an off day. We actually came out of the blocks quite quickly, and there can only have been about two minutes on the clock when Kevin McDonald’s lofted pass was controlled and finished superbly by Nouha Dicko. It was at this point that some guy across from us decided to let of a smoke bomb. Very colourful, but a bit worrying when you’re asthmatic father starts coughing quite heavily.

After that, we never really got into the game, we sat too deep and lacked a creative spark in the absence of flying winger Bakary Sako, who was flying home from the African Cup of Nations so was unavailable. Bolton themselves weren’t great, but there was a crazy 5 minute spell where they scored twice, to take the lead. Danny Batth cynically chopped Adam Le Fondre down on the edge of the box, and youngster Zach Clough stepped up to curl a delicious free kick into the far corner. There will be question marks over Carl Ikeme’s positioning, but take nothing away from the strike. Then barely two minutes later Clough scored again, taking advantage of some generous defensive work from Rajiv Van La Parra and Batth, to pick out the far corner, albeit Ikeme got a hand to the shot. As far as attacking play went, that was it for the first half, both sides had spells of possession but could create very little.

Second half was very similar, if anything we shaded the possession, but lacked any real spark. We barely registered a shot on goal. That was, until, added time. James Henry, a vastly underrated winger with a cracking right foot and a wonderful beard, put the former to good use to hammer in an equaliser from 30 yards. It was as pure a strike as I’ve seen in a long time, and the away end erupted. I somehow managed to cut and bruise my foot in the celebrations, I’ll take that all day long though, in celebrating a barely earned point. Bizarrely, Henry and his team mates ran the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of us, meaning they were all back in their own half. The referee allowed Bolton to kick off, with half of our team still jumping about in front of the away stand! Fortunately nothing came of it, and the game finished 2-2. We could have had no complaints had we lost, yet the last minute equaliser made it feel like a win.

The atmosphere was a bit flat, to be honest. I would say the ground was only 60% full, and there were great swathes of empty seats across all sections of the home support, meaning there wasn’t any continuous noise from anywhere. Even when they scored, the noise was drowned out by the dreaded goal music, something which I’m sure every fan would happily throw into Room 101, should they ever be invited onto Frank Skinner’s programme.

View From The Lower Away Section

View from the lower away section

The stewards were there if you needed them, but didn’t seem to be particularly enthralled by their job. One particularly surly one kept walking up the steps to tell fans to stay clear of the steps. It reminded me of a fussy Fourth Official, snapping into action whenever a manager dares stray from his technical area.

The food was a nice selection of pies, burgers, hotdogs. I went with the Holland’s Peppered Steak Pie, which I’d enjoyed a few weeks ago at Blackburn. It was again very nice, and again very peppery! You’d think I’d have learned my lesson…

The toilets were clean, although the hand dryers in the girls’ toilets were useless, I’d have been quicker blowing on my hands to dry them. I asked my brother what the men’s toilets were like, for the purpose of this review, but his shrug didn’t really help. I suppose if you’ve been to enough grounds you probably get used to the toilets.

The programme was fairly decent, the section on Wolves was well researched. It was quite child friendly, plenty of quiz pages. The captain’s article by Jay Spearing was laced with irony, given that two days ago he left to join Blackburn on loan. An interesting feature was ‘One to Eleven’, where midfielder Neil Danns selected the best XI he’s played with. If you’re interested, and why wouldn’t you be, he went with: Friedel, Clyne, Berg, Short, Konchesky, Moses, Dunn, Tugay, Zaha, Cole, Yorke. At £3 it was also priced in line with most other Championship clubs.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

The walk back to the train station was easy enough, but sadly a heady mix of a last minute equaliser, an already exisiting rivalry and alcohol meant that some fans, from both sets of teams, caused a bit of trouble at the station. One of the windows of the train was broken, causing about an hour’s delay. Thankfully, as mentioned above, we had the foresight to buy return tickets valid for any journey on that route, so we were able to catch the next available trains to the ones we had planned. It took slightly longer to get home than we’d planned, but fortunately seeing as Strictly Come Dancing isn’t on this time of year, we didn’t miss anything important on telly by adding an hour to our journey...

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A fairly dull game, bookended by two very well taken Wolves goals, made for an interesting afternoon in the biting Lancastrian wind. A draw which felt like a win which could have been a loss, as my brother put it. Mind you, he did lambast James Henry for contributing nothing to the game, about 30 seconds before he scored, so what does he know?

The Macron Stadium is a nice, modern stadium, but what it has in cleanliness and aesthetics, it perhaps lacks in charm and acoustics. It’s a nice place to watch football, certainly, but for the more traditional supporters amongst you, it may leave you pining for the ‘good old days’ of terracing.

Bolton Wanderers v Watford
Championship League
Saturday 22 February 2014, 3pm
Kevan & Eddy Simth (Watford fans)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It was going to be a nice way to round off a family half term break to the Peak District. Bolton have not won for a while and Watford fans normally enjoy away trips.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We stayed in a hotel a ten minute walk from the ground. Apart from the car parks immediately around the stadium we saw a few others located at in school and offices. Understandably it appeared to be easier to park than on a previous Premier League visit in 2006.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

There did not seem to be any food vans outside the ground so we had a cheeseburger and a chicken balti pie, which was on the small side, inside the ground. The food was of decent quality. Outside was very quiet.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground was nicely designed and looked modern and unique compared to other new stadiums. All sides are of the same design and height.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

From a Watford's fans perspective it was a boring game with few chances for Watford. A good first half by Bolton allowed them to take a 2-0 lead. After half time there were no real opportunities and Watford never looked like coming back from behind. The atmosphere was poor for both teams and even the normally vocal Watford away fans did not get into their stride. The stewards seemed fairly relaxed but there was nothing to test them as the atmosphere was poor. There were plenty of room on the concourse, the toilets were good and the view of the action was good.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Away fans exit directly towards the main road and this was made quicker by watching the last two minutes of stoppage time on the screens in the concourse. On the walk back the main roads were moving well.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day out but spoiled by the football from a Watford perspective although the defeat could have been heavier. Other than that a visit to Bolton is a worthwhile trip.

Bolton Wanderers v Leeds United
Championship League
Saturday 15 September 2013, 3pm
John Rogers (Leeds United fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Another 'first', although a ground I have seen many times during journeys around the North West.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The Reebok must be one of the easiest grounds in the country to get to and from, being situated just off junction 6 of the M61. Horwich Parkway railway station is just 200 metres from the stadium. There are several car parks in the vicinity, most of which charge in the region of £4-£5. However, if one doesn't mind a short walk of around 15 minutes, free parking can be found in the streets close to the Beehive pub.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

The Beehive pub can be used by away fans. There is a sandwich shop nearby and a Subway in the retail park adjacent to the ground, but little else as the stadium is not near the centre of Bolton or neighbouring Horwich.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is very distinctive, with an unusual floodlight pylon/cantilevered stand structure which gives it a character missing from many of the newer grounds. The capacity is surprisingly low for what appears to be quite a large ground from the outside.

The area around the ground has been attractively landscaped and the newly-unveiled statue of Nat Lofthouse provides a fitting focal point for a club with a long history.

Inside, the view is excellent, with clear lines of sight and steeply raked upper tiers that give the feeling of being close to the action.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Delighted with our 1-0 win, which continued Bolton's wretched start to the season - no doubt a contributory factor to the lack of atmosphere provided by the home support. The Leeds following, which numbered c. 4800, was again excellent throughout.

Contrary to what I had heard, stewarding was discreet and no attempt was made to force fans to remain seated. Leg room was excellent...probably more so amongst home supporters, who were conspicuous by their absence.

Refreshments were generally unexceptional and pricey. That said, I did wonder whether Boltonians wanted to appear more refined, offering glasses of wine and insisting my coke was decanted into a plastic cup.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy - 10 minutes from getting into the car to hitting the motorway.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The result was obviously the most important aspect of the visit to the Reebok, but I can't imagine there will be many better venues to watch Championship football


Bolton Wanderers v Cardiff City
Championship League
Saturday 3rd November 2012, 3pm
Steve Williams (Cardiff City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

We were looking forward going to the ground as it was one of the few grounds we hadn't been to.  We had been to the old Burnden Park ground years ago but since Bolton and Cardiff haven't been in the same league for years it seemed like a good away trip.
 
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey was straight forward, the ground well is signposted off the M61.  Parking seemed limited, apart from the retail park (Middlebrook) which was rather busy. We decided to go past the ground and park around the Beehive roundabout area, about 15 mins walk to the Reebok.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?  

Having parked up in the Beehive roundabout area, we found an away friendly pub (The Beehive) that was full of Cardiff fans, nice relaxed atmosphere, decent pint and decent food. Also if you had kids there was a wacky warehouse on site too. Home fans in this pub seemed friendly too which always helps.   

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground is very cool looking to be honest, mainly due to the unusual floodlights.  The away end view was great, as are most modern stadiums and the leg room was okay, which can be a problem sometimes with me being over 6 feet tall. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was poor with City losing 2-1 in the end mainly down to the ref having a nightmare game (that’s my view).  The stewards at the game seemed over the top to be honest and reading past reviews this seems to be the case for most away fans. Several City fans were ejected before half time. The atmosphere was quite good, bearing in mind Bolton’s home crowds have dropped some what since being relegated.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away after the game was easy , straight out into the retail park and a 15 min walk to the car.  You do come out though into the home fans, which can make things interesting.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Easy ground to get to, parking fairly easy, away friendly pub near ground and decent view.  All in all a good away day, apart from the result.

Bolton Wanderers v Wigan Athletic
Premier League
Saturday 11th February 2012, 3pm
Alan Parker (Wigan Athletic fan)

My son and I had previously been to this ground to support Wigan on three previous occasions, with one win and two draws. This match was a real 'six pointer' and a defeat for Wigan would have seen them really cut adrift. As it turned out, at the end of the weekend, just two points separated the bottom five teams, who seem to be forming a mini league of their own (QPR, Blackburn, Wolves, Bolton and Wigan). My son had brought along his German girlfriend, to experience her first football match.

We have passed the Reebok many times before, whilst driving along the M61. I have even been there on teaching courses, held in the luxurious board rooms. The stadium is not huge but is very attractive and well proportioned from the outside and the inside is no less impressive. The corners are filled in and there is an intense atmosphere.

Getting there is no problem, it is just a short distance off the motorway, and there is a railway station right by the ground as well. We took the first left turn and parked on an icy car park, costing £6. We got there fairly early, with the intention of walking to the Beehive pub about half a mile past the ground for a pint and to watch the second half of the Man United v. Liverpool match on TV. This is a good venue for away fans. On the way back to the ground, it was noticeable there was quite a large police presence and a few arrests were being made, but we had no idea what for. The German girl was intrigued by all the police horses and wondered why they used them. Had to think a bit for reasons! Getting into the ground was no problem, but as usual there are far more stewards around the away end than anywhere else and they carried out fairly random, half-hearted searches.

The concourse is quite cramped so we did not linger. We had seats in row G of the lower tier (actually the fourth row), looking directly down the touchline, quite different from our usual side-on seats at the DW. Wigan played magnificently, as if their very lives depended on the result, and the atmosphere in the away end was electric. Some flares were thrown and there was a lot of smoke at one time. Quite continental. Caldwell scored for Wigan just before half time, then Mark Davies equalised with a superb strike after a lucky deflection off Ngog's back. But McArthur scored a late, deserved winner for Wigan. Cue great rejoicing amongst the Wiganers. The Bolton fans were not impressed with their team's performance. There were boos at half time and lots of empty seats well before the end. As usual, Wigan were near the end of Match of the Day, and also as usual, there was little or no analysis of the match. They had spent most of the time on the Suarez non-handshake incident.

Bolton is a great away day. Tickets reasonable at £22. Lovely ground, decent leg room, home fans seem reasonably friendly, easy to get to, decent pub not far away. Let's hope this fixture will take place next season with both teams still in the Premier league. I realise it is easy to be generous when your side has just won !

Getting away was fairly easy, after queuing to get off the car park. The M61 is close by and we were soon heading North.

Bolton Wanderers v Norwich City
Premier League
Saturday 17th September 2011, 3pm
Thomas Ling (Norwich City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

This was my first visit to the Rebook and I was really looking forward to it. I had heard the the stadium was really good and modern and that the fans were friendly, which is always good on an away day.   

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey up to Bolton was straightforward and relaxing. We travelled by coach, which was supplied by a private company called Easton's. On the way we stopped at Castleford at a Retail Park, which 'conveniently' had a Wetherspoon outlet located nearby, where we enjoyed a good selection of food and drink at reasonable prices. 

We then continued onto Bolton and in total we spent five hours travelling on the coach from Norwich. The stadium was easy to spot just off the M61 and we parked right outside. This is was on one of the official car parks which you had to pay to get into, whether you were car or bus. 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We did not go to a pub or chip shop we just bought a programme and went straight into the ground. The programme sellers game right up to our bus which was quite handy. Although we didn't go to a pub, I noticed that there was a Harvester and a Premier Inn just across from the stadium, which if you are staying overnight or want something to eat or drink, then this might be an idea.  

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The catering area was okay but a little on the small side. But there was Sky Sports on, and when we got there they had the Blackburn v Arsenal game on which was very good. The away stand, the South Stand, was like the rest of the stadium being two tiered. The stadium was really good and looked great. In my opinion, it is one of the top stadiums in Britain.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was good for Norwich, with two quick goals in the first half, that set us on our way. Just after half time, Bolton were reduced to 10 men, when they had a player sent off for improper conduct. Bolton did managed to pull one back from the penalty spot but we held on for a 2-1 win. 

The atmosphere at the stadium was good from a Norwich perspective, but the home fans were a little quiet throughout the match.  They were good at the start of the game, particularly in the corner of the West Stand next to the away fans, but this ebbed away as the match went our way. There was also a drummer behind the goal in the North stand which banged on thought the match. Annoyingly, the stewards kept telling us to sit down, but we like most Norwich fans decided to ignore them and in the stewards soon gave up.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground was easy, walk outside onto the waiting coach, then after a 5-10 minute wait we were on our way on to the M61 and then it was an easy drive home. 
 
7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I had really enjoyed my trip to the Rebook. This was a fun and easy to get to. It was also fantastic to get all three points.

Bolton Wanderers v Newcastle United
Premier League
Saturday 20th November 2010, 3pm
Kevin Laidler (Newcastle United fan)

This was my first visit to The Reebok Stadium and due to visiting family in Doncaster I travelled by car from Yorkshire via The A1 and the M62, M60 and M61. The stadium t was easy to find from the M61 and was an impressive sight with its space age looks.

I headed for The Bromilow Arms as recommended elsewhere on this site and parked in a side street next to it which was about a 15 minute walk away from the ground. This pub had a good, friendly atmosphere with probably more away supporters than home fans. Although it was packed it didn't take long to get served and they had a good selection of real ale and good banter between both sets of supporters. I would certainly recommend this pub for visiting supporters.
 
The away end was the nearest end of the ground to this pub. I was seated behind the goal and leg room was okay but it didn't really matter as Toon fans tend to stand. The atmosphere was a bit bit flat from the home fans who didn't get going until they were winning. They eventually tonked us 5-1, which to give them credit, they deserved. They had a large electronic scoreboard in the right hand corner of the away end which replayed parts of the match which was good.
 
At half time it was fairly easy going to toilets compared to a lot of grounds which tend to be more cramped. I didn't use food or drink outlets so cannot comment on them.
 
I found the stewards a bit heavy picking on people for standing. 
 
Getting away from the ground was not a problem. By the time I got to my car and left it was fairly quiet and I got on to the M61 then onto the M62.
 
Not a bad day out apart from the result. These out of town stadiums are not as much fun as inner city stadiums but access was easy, parking okay and getting a drink was was fine.

Updated 28th July 2015

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