Rotherham United

AESSEAL New York Stadium

Capacity: 12,021 (all seated)
Address: New York Way, Rotherham, S60 1AH
Telephone: 0844 4140733
Fax: 0844 4140744
Ticket Office: 0844 4140737
Pitch Size: 110 x 72 yards
Club Nickname: The Millers
Year Ground Opened: 2012
Shirt Sponsors: Parkgate
Away Shirt Sponsors: Shedlands
Kit Manufacturer: Puma
Home Kit: Red and White
Away Kit: White and Black
Third Kit: Black with White Trim

External View
External View
West and South Stands
West and South Stands
East Stand
East Stand
North Stand
North Stand
West Stand
West Stand
South Stand
South Stand
View From Away End
View From Away End
North Stand External View
North Stand External View

After spending four years at the Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield, the Club have returned home to Rotherham. The new stadium, which cost in the region of £20m to build, is located close to their old  Millmoor ground where they played for 101 years. The area of Rotherham where the ground is located is historically known as New York (hence the stadium name) and is built on the site of the old Guest & Chrimes factory. Set beside the River Don, the  stadium from the outside looks far larger than its 12,000 capacity and is quite striking in its design. It is totally enclosed and all seated.

On one side is the Eric Twigg Foods Pukka Pies (West) Stand. This is the largest of the four single tiered stands. It is unusual in so much that the middle seated area of the stand is situated at a lower level than either of the wings. There is an executive area above this with seating outside and yet further above is a television gantry, set into the red paneled wall. The other sides of the stadium are much smaller in size. Both ends are virtually identical, except that the Morrisons (South) Stand has a small electric scoreboard situated at the back of it. On the remaining side is the Ben Bennett (East) Stand, which is slightly less taller than both the ends. This simple looking stand has two large areas built into the front of the stand for the use of disabled supporters. There is a large video screen situated in the North West corner.

The most interesting feature inside the stadium is the roof. This descends down from the West Stand over the ends is large 'steps' eventually meeting the East Stand. A large amount of transparent perspex has been used in the roof to allow more light to reach the playing surface and improve their overall look. On the roof of the East Stand are two futuristic looking floodlight pylons that are supplemented by a row of lights above the West Stand.

In November 2014 the stadium was renamed the AESSEAL New York Stadium in a five year corporate sponsorship deal.

The stadium has been built in such a way and the necessary foundations have been put in place to further expand the stadium capacity to 20,000. This would be achieved by adding an additional tier to the North, South and East Stands. This may be done in phases; a first to 16,000 and then a second phase to 20,000.

Away fans are normally housed in the Morrison Stand at one end of the stadium, where around 2,500 supporters can be accommodated. If only a small away following is expected then part of the Ben Bennett  Stand (towards the Morrison South Stand) is allocated instead. The stadium has electronic turnstiles meaning that you have to insert your tickey into a reader to gain admission. Cash is not accepted at the turnstiles and tickets for the away section can be purchased from the dedicated away ticket office at the back of the Morrison Stand.

As you would expect from a new stadium the facilities and views of the playing action are generally good. The angle of the Morrison Stand is quite steep, meaning that it is a bit of a hike to get to the top. On the concourse the food and drink available includes: a range of Pukka Pies (Chicken Balti, Meat & Potato, Steak & Kidney, all £3), Pasties (£3), Jumbo Sausage Rolls (£2.50), Hot Dogs (£3.50), Cheeseburgers (£3.50) and Burgers (£3.50). These are available from two refreshment kiosks on the concourse. I noticed that most fans tended to head to the kiosk closest to the entrance turnstiles, resulting in queues at this outlet whilst the other had few or no customers. 

The stewards were generally laid back and friendly and I thought it was a nice touch that smokers were allowed to go outside the stadium for a cigarette at half time. There is also a large television screen on the concourse showing Sky Sports. The stadium turnstiles are equipped with automatic turnstiles (where you insert your ticket into a bar code reader) but these don't yet seem to be in operation. My only real criticism was that I could hardly make out a single word that the stadium announcer said and that the bottom of my pie was burnt! Plus there didn't seem that there were any barriers in place at the front of the away section to prevent away fans entering the home sections. I know that this is normally not a worry, but in a more highly charged game....

Unlike most new stadiums which are situated way out of town in the middle of nowhere, the New York Stadium is located close to the town centre. This not only means good transport links, but also a fair choice of eating and drinking outlets.

There are a number of pubs in the nearby town centre, which are only a few minutes walk from the stadium. These include three Wetherspoon pubs. One of these; the Bluecoat (on the Crofts) is also CAMRA Good Beer Guide listed, whilst closer to the railway station is the Rhinoceros. These pubs though tend to have more a home feel about them. A better bet may be the Bridge Inn, which is located quite close to the railway station (turn right out of the station and the pub is across the road on the left). This pub which is listed in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide serves beers from the Old Mill Brewery as well as guest beers and a real cider. This pub was welcoming towards away fans on my visit and it wasn't too bad to get served inside. 

Colin Hall a visiting Leicester City fan adds; 'We discovered the Cutlers Arms on Westgate (turn right off the  Main Street), which turned out to be a most welcoming and hospitable tavern. It had a mixture of home and away fans and sold beers from the local Chantry’s brewery'. 

Alcohol is also available inside the stadium in the form of: Fosters, John Smiths (Both £3 a pint), Bulmers (£3 a bottle), plus Red, White and Rose wines (£3.90 small bottle).

If travelling by train and changing at Sheffield station, then on the station itself (Platform 1) is the Sheffield Tap which serves real ales and is run by the Thornbridge Brewery (please note though that no football colours are allowed).

From the North:

Leave the M1 at Junction 34 and take the A6178 towards Rotherham. At the third roundabout called Ickles Roundabout take the first exit onto the A630 Centenary Way (signposted Doncaster), you will see the stadium on your right. You will pass the floodlights of Millmoor on your left and at the next roundabout (called the Masbrough roundabout with the Liquid night club on one corner) turn right onto Main Street and the entrance to the stadium is down on the right. 

From the South:

Leave the M1 at Junction 33 and take the A630 towards Rotherham. After around two miles and crossing over three roundabouts you will reach the stadium on your right. You will pass the floodlights of Millmoor on your left and at the next roundabout (called the Masbrough roundabout with the Liquid night club on one corner) turn right onto Main Street and the entrance to the stadium is down on the right.

Car Parking

Car parking at the stadium is for permit holders only. However there are a number of pay & display car parks located around the town centre. Otherwise there is some street parking available around the area of the Millmoor ground, which is around a 15 minute walk away from the visitors turnstiles. There is a multi storey car park located next to the Interchange Bus Station which costs £2.80 for four hours. 

Post Code for Sat-Nav: S60 1QY (this is the post code of the nearby Police Station on Main Street)

The nearest railway station is Rotherham Central which only a five minute walk from the stadium. The stadium is located almost directly behind the railway station. As you come out of the main station entrance turn right along Bridge Street. Opposite the Bridge Inn is a footpath that goes along one side of the River Don. Walk along this footpath until you reach a car park and then head towards the car park entrance. Then turn left going up over the bridge across the river and then take the next right into Market Street. At the bottom of Market Street turn right into Main Street and the stadium entrance is down this road on the left.

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:

The prices below are for tickets purchased in advance of matchday. Tickets bought on the day of the game can cost up to £2 more per ticket.

Home Fans:
KCM Recycling (North) Stand: Adults £23, Concessions £13, Under 18's £9, Under 13's £7
Eric Twigg Foods and Pukka Pies (West) Stand: 
Adults £25, Concessions £15, Under 18's £9, Under 13's £7 
Beb Benett (East) Family Stand: 
Adults £25, Concessions £15, Under 18's £9, Under 13's £7, Under 8's £2* 

Away Fans:
Morrisons (South) Stand: Adults £23, Concessions £13, Under 18's £9, Under 13's £7

Concessions apply to Over 60's, Students, Members of the Armed Forces and the Disabled.

* Must be accompanied by a paying adult.

 

Official Programme: £3.

Barnsley, Sheffield Wednesday, Sheffield United, Doncaster Rovers and Chesterfield.

At The New York Stadium:
11,758 v Sheffield United
League One, September 7th 2013.

At Millmoor:
25,170 v Sheffield United,
Division 2, December 13th 1952.

Average Attendance:
2013-2014: 8,450 (League One)
2012-2013: 7,954 (League Two)
At Don Valley:
2011-2012: 3,498 (League Two)

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

Rotherham United FC fixture list (takes you to the BBC Sports 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. 

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Rotherham United v AFC Bournemouth
Championship League
Saturday, January 17th, 2015, 3pm
Robbie Sargent (AFC Bournemouth fan)

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

I didn't get the opportunity to visit the New York Stadium for our FA Cup meeting a fortnight earlier, and this was a new ground for me. I'd heard good things from fellow Bournemouth fans about their experiences and so was very much looking forward to my visit

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

I am an exiled Bournemouth fan living in Milton Keynes, so it was a pretty straight forward journey up the M1. But when will they ever finish those roadworks! I had decided to park in the Rotherham Interchange multi-storey and found it very easily. It proved to be a good location for my choice of pub.

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

The Bournemouth Exiles group had arranged to meet at the Bridge Inn, having had an excellent experience there just two weeks before.  The pub is about a 4-5 minute walk from the Interchange, while it's just across the road from the railway station (turn right on exit). It was a pleasure to drink in the company of home fans, enjoying some good football conversation. The pub serves quality real ale and the staff worked the bar very well.  Simple food was on offer - hot dogs and burgers in a napkin - no plates or knives and forks here! There is also a plethora of football scarves pinned to the walls with clubs of most divisions (and it seemed nationalities) represented. The biggest compliment I can pay to the pub is that next time I am in Rotherham for the football, this is where I will come. It's about a 10 minute walk to the stadium from here.

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

The ground looks great - I'm not a big fan of the newer stadiums, but this is done really well. From the outside, it looks bigger than the 12,000 capacity.

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

I always felt Bournemouth were comfortable during the game and was confident of a victory.  A 2-0 win transpired, and as much I would love Rotherham to stay up (they had some great fans and it was a good day out) I fear for them this season.  The atmosphere was not great with an attendance of just over 9,000 and the home fans concerned at their teams lack of attacking threat (apart from one or two opportunities created in the first half). Their ire was directed at the referee and his officials, not surprising when you consider the linesman gave an offside directly from a throw-in!

I enjoyed a Chicken Balti pie, albeit it was still repeating on me in the car all the way back down the M1 after the game - much to the despair of my 14 year old son in the passenger seat! The stewards were friendly and helpful, offering a cheery 'goodbye and safe journey home' at the end of the game. Stewards at places like Norwich and Ipswich could learn a lot from these guys.

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

A brisk 15 minute walk back to the Interchange, and on exit from the car park an immediate turn right on to a dual carriageway meant that we were back on the M1 in no time at all.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A fantastic day all round - great pub, great home fans, lovely stadium and Bournemouth still top of the Championship - who'd have thought!

Rotherham United v Leicester City
Pre-Season Friendly
Tuesday, August 5th, 2014, 7.45pm
Colin Hall (Leicester City fan)

I The old and new faces of Rotherham were on display as we approached the town centre on the A630 from the M1. To the left stood Millmoor, former home of the local football club, its stands and floodlights still intact, but looking forlorn and dilapidated. To the right, however, lay the shiny New York Stadium, opened in 2012, and already regarded as the most prominent symbol of the regeneration of club and town alike.

That process, at least as far as the latter is concerned, is clearly still some distance from completion, given the swathes of derelict land in the vicinity of the new venue. We parked in the grounds of a former night club (for a cost of £2) before passing the site of the disused, long-vacated Guest and Chrimes foundry. Many of the distinctive fire hydrants that can be seen in US films and TV shows were originally made here, hence the nickname “New York” which locals applied to the area and after which the new stadium is named.

Having purchased our match tickets, we sought refreshment in a local hostelry, and discovered the Cutlers Arms in Westgate (turn right from Main Street), a most welcoming and hospitable tavern.
It sold beers from the local Chantry’s brewery at £2.50/pint and the two products sampled (Tony’s Tipple and Steelos, both pale ales) were thoroughly enjoyed by all of our party of four. The beer garden, which doubles as an outdoor gig venue, proved popular with Foxes and locals alike, and the pub is certain to become a much-welcome addition to this season’s Championship drinking circuit.

The route back to the stadium was enlivened by a cheeseburger (price £2.50, onions included) from a van parked across the road from the police station, and a chat with a local man preparing for an evening of fishing rather than football. He assured all and sundry that fish (perch in particular) were readily available from the river, so presumably pollution levels are much reduced from the area’s industrial heyday.

We finally took our seats in the upper reaches of the away end as the game kicked off. The stadium is one of the more distinctive of the modern generation, with sloping roofs and steep banking. Although the latter can prove a test for ageing limbs, it also enabled an excellent view of the action, as well as the spires of a surprising number of churches which are still in existence within central Rotherham.

The toilets and catering facilities are a substantial improvement on those previously on offer to away supporters at Millmoor. Sadly, Rotherham, like so many other modern football clubs (Leicester included) have succumbed to the temptation of fleecing captive audiences, with many prices for food and drink up to 40p higher than those apparently being charged last season.

All that remained was for City to deliver a performance befitting their newly-acquired Premier League status, and the team duly obliged during a 3-1 victory against spirited hosts.

The crowd of below 4,000 was rather less than it could have been, but at least this minimised potential post-match traffic congestion. We were back on the motorway within 15 minutes of the final whistle and despite extensive roadworks extending through much of the Derbyshire section, back in Leicestershire within the hour.

While New York may not have the glamour of captivating qualities of its more famous namesake, it provides a welcoming and enjoyable experience which many discerning away fans will treasure during the coming season.

 

Rotherham United v Bristol City
League One
Saturday, March 29th, 2014, 3pm
Adam Chard (Bristol City fan)

I was unexpectedly presented with the prospect of a rare away trip to Rotherham to see my team Bristol City. I’ve managed to see City play at least once every season since 1987, so I gleefully grabbed the opportunity to make the 80 mile trip to South Yorkshire from my East Yorkshire home. Plus it would be the 43rd stadium ticked off my list!

The car journey was straightforward. In fact, once I drove into the town, I was mightily impressed just how easy it was getting from A to B in Rotherham. 

I wanted to keep my car on the south side of the stadium and on the map things looked very simple. There appeared to be plenty of residential streets and I could cross the River Don south of the stadium. However on closer inspection (and no one seems to mention this!) the bridge to the south of the stadium is for vehicles only and the next bridge is quite a way to the north.

I found a decent looking residential street with plenty of spaces. After a careful check I was confident there were no parking restrictions (I got a parking ticket at Preston North End because I didn’t check this out thoroughly!). This left me with a very pleasant walk down the hill with the stadium gleaming in the sunlight below.

The weather was lovely as I turned off Main Street onto the riverside walk. The stadium does look much bigger from the outside than its 12,000 capacity would suggest.

The turnstiles are all equipped with bar code scanners, so my ticket had to be purchased from an office before entering. Once inside, there was a large screen showing the Man Utd v Aston Villa match and a couple of refreshment stalls, the furthest of which was deserted.

The toilets were decent enough and a poster had been put up thanking the fans for travelling! Nice touch!

The away stand is much steeper than many stands I have been in around the country, meaning a really good view and no issues with seeing over the top of people.

View From The Away Stand

View from the away end

I didn’t have any great expectations, as Rotherham were pushing for promotion and we were just glad to be clear of any relegation threat. However, with our improved form I was hoping we’d give them a good game. 

City couldn’t have got off to a worse start. Backing off and backing off, they allowed Rotherham’s Tavernier plenty of sight of goal before he unleashed an unstoppable shot. All with barely one minute on the clock. For the rest of the first half City looked poor and our first effort on goal came in the 30th. Rotherham looked comfortable but rarely threatening. 

City came out much stronger in the second half, attacking the goal in front of our end. Around the 50th minute mark, City equalised with an absolute screamer from Wade Elliott. The City fans were now in fine voice and from this point it seemed we would at least get a point out of the game.

However, there was to be cruel twist of fate. Fielding took a routine goal kick from his hands. As the ball was sailing over the halfway line, we all heard a whistle and saw the Linesmen flagging furiously. It soon became apparent Fielding had been penalised for handball, for carrying the ball out of his penalty area! (Although later TV replays seemed to show that he hadn’t). Rotherham were awarded a free kick right on the edge of the penalty area and Tavernier powered his shot into the top right corner with apparent ease.

From then on Rotherham proceeded to shut out the game and it finally ended 2-1 to the home side. Disappointing, but we all clapped the City lads off after a much better second half performance.

I was forced to walk the opposite direction to my car due to segregation at the end of the match, but it was fairly simple to get back out onto Main Street from New York Way. Main Street was actually closed off to allow people to walk in the road. The walk back up the hill left me huffing and puffing a bit, but I was able to get out of Rotherham with ease.

So all in all a very enjoyable away trip, despite the result. The New York Stadium is a quality ground, with great facilities and all went smoothly. The new ground has obviously benefited the town greatly and just goes to prove what a difference this can make to a club.

Rotherham United v Swindon Town
League One
Saturday, October 12th, 2013, 3pm
Ashley Morris (Swindon Town fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground:
 
Me, my partner and little one were looking forward to going to the New York Stadium as it has been newly built and an away ground we had not yet been to.  
 
2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
We travelled up on the Friday and stayed the weekend in Sheffield but have to say the M1 was a nightmare all weekend. Getting to the Ground was easy enough as we had the sat nav but was well signposted in any case and found great car parking in a disused nightclub (Liquid) car park for £3 that was only a few minutes walk to the ground which was great as we had the little one and the weather wasn't great.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
 
We arrived at the ground about half one and had a quick walk around the Stadium but due to the weather we decided to go and get our seats and a cup of tea. 

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?
 
I have to say the Stadium looks impressive and is a credit to Rotherham United FC as some of the new grounds look soulless. Once inside we walked down the concourse which was long and very clean there with two TV's at either end showing the early kick off of Plymouth VS Portsmouth and got our seats. We sat right at the back in the corner of the stand and had a brilliant view of the game. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
Once we had got to our seats I decided to go and get us a cup of tea from the concourse which costs £2 each I didn't buy any food but noticed they sold burgers + pies including the chicken balti pie for £3. The stewards were very friendly and helpful and even had a programme seller in the concourse. 

The game itself was very slow for us to get started as Rotherham dominated the first 20 minutes and should really have been two or three nil up with Revell, Pringle and Mills all going close but we started getting into the game and struck in the 33rd min with MOTM Alex Pritchard scoring a sweet free kick. After the goal it was just one way traffic with us capitalising on the stroke of half time to go in 2 nil up through Luongos deflected shot. I thought Rotherham would come out more fired up after half time but it never materialised and we controlled the whole 2nd half scoring another 2 goals through Ajose and N'Guessan and could of added a few more with some of the best football I've seen us play in years with several bouts of 'Ole! Ole!' coming from our 540 fans who were obviously in great spirits as we ran out 4-0 winners and ended our woeful away form. I have to say that the home fans were very quiet all game and never really gave their team any support and a lot left after the third goal went in which didn't help the team.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
We left about 5 mins after the game finished and it was a quick walk back to the car. There was a road closed outside the ground which looks like they do on match days so the traffic wasn't to bad and due to the fact that a lot of home fans had left before the full time whistle we was back on the road and to the hotel in no time.  

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
It was a great away day for us and would recommend to any football fan. The New York Stadium is a very tidy and smart looking ground and would go again.   

Rotherham United v Preston North End
League One
Saturday, August 10th, 2013, 3pm
Paul Willott (Preston North End fan)

South Yorkshire has seen some drastic changes to its scenery and landscape since the 1980s; nowhere more dramatic than the Rotherham area. The huge railway marshalling yards at Wath-on-Dearne to the north, and Tinsley just the other side of the M1 at Junction 34 have both been swept away; much of the heavy industry has dwindled away typified by the Manvers coking plant to the south. But in the middle of all this, Rotherham United continue to ply their trade predominantly in the third tier of English league football.

In fact contrary to the trend of clubs moving out of town, Rotherham have contrived to move closer to their town centre with a new ground which looked appealing from the pictures I had seen prior to my journey there. Hence I left my home in Kent with my daughter that morning not only with a sense of anticipation about seeing the new ground, but also the buzz of what was to be our first match of the season after the wilderness of the months without football. These very early fixtures always have been an excitement; who cannot fail to be full of hope and expectation when its the start of the season?
 
Shortly after burrowing under the Thames estuary via the Dartford crossing, we left the M25 at the Junction with the A12 to meet up with some colleagues from work who jumped in our car and it became incumbent upon me to rejoin that beloved institution of numerous traffic and travel radio bulletins, the M25, and follow it till we swept north onto the M1. To be frank, ploughing up that motorway seemed hard work with countless motorists seemingly intent on sitting in the middle and outside lanes at 60mph going no faster than cars to their nearside despite an open road ahead of them. Hence I was quite glad to leave the motorway at Junction 33 and follow the signs for Rotherham.  
 
Its almost impossible not to find the ground following the A630; the new "New York" stadium sitting to your right as the floodlights of the old Millmoor ground stand forlornly on the opposite side of the road. Almost out of instinct I immediately turned left at the next roundabout and at the entrance to Millmoor I spied that secure parking was being advertised for £3 which seemed ideal and reasonable and again on instinct without further thought I swung in, paid the £3 and parked up.
 
I was very content as we had arrived in perfect time to gain early access to the New York Stadium, which when one is mindful of a youngster on board is crucial in the event of sourcing alternative seating to be able to view the match should such a need arise. Hence we could get out and stretch legs and munch on packed lunch bits and pieces for a while before locking up the car and wandering down the to the new stadium.
 
First impressions didn't disappoint; whilst negotiating the pedestrian subway under the A630 we "disturbed" a couple of East European chaps conducting a hasty drugs deal so be wary!
 
Once safely clear of the subway we headed towards the quite striking "New York" stadium which I found quite appealing to the eye and quite distinctive which indicates that quite a lot of thought went into the design of the ground. The stewards outside the ground were extremely friendly and helpful in directing us to the away turnstiles.

The turnstiles themselves are state-of-the-art bar-code scanning types, and once inside we accessed the seating area and found it to be quite steep which I find ideal as even if relatively tall people come and sit in front of us, my daughter can still see the match. Even more ideal though were the seats at the very top of the aisles which for once were not marked with "reserved for stewards/stewards only" so without further ado I plonked my daughter on one of those seats and the rest of our group sat on either side of her.

With the ground still relatively empty, it afforded a good view of the interior of this smart little stadium; the two floodlight pylons that "lean" into and over the ground from the smaller of the pitch side stands were reminiscent of the then futuristic floodlight arrangement at Swansea City's old Vetch Field ground when they rebuilt the East Stand if any-one recalls?
 
The atmosphere soon built up as more travelling support arrived, and soon there was a real boisterous party mood in the away end as the Preston supporters revelled in the fact that earlier in the week we had disposed of our most bitter and despised rivals Blackpool in the league cup.   Whether the stewarding and policing is normally so relaxed I obviously couldn't comment as I suspect the authorities under-estimated the numbers that they may have needed; in the event they made little effort to stop the smoke grenades being continually detonated as song after song of an anti-Blackpool nature was belted out. Equally it must be said that on the odd occasion that stewards did pay us a visit, the supporters who had foolishly smuggled tins of alcohol into the ground surrendered them without fuss once they were spotted.
 
The home supporters didn't really seem to find a voice until well into the second half, by which time one sensed that a
0-0 scoreline was almost inevitable but that shouldn't detract from what was a cracking match with plenty of good passing football and build-up play on a good quality pitch. From a Preston perspective, the only thing lacking was better quality delivery into the box, but how encouraging it was after some 4 seasons of downward spiral to see an assured, composed, well organised defence and midfield.
 
Overall a draw was a fair result though, and as good a 0-0 match as I've seen for many a year, and it made a change to see a Preston performance to be really encouraged with. Hence when the final whistle sounded I was truly content and satisfied with the entertainment.
 
As we ourselves had no urge to rush south, we let the vast majority of supporter leave before heading for the exits, and it gave another chance to survey this tidy and impressive little ground. A capacity of 12,000 is probably just right; the attendance that afternoon was a little under 9,000, and it felt like a fairly full ground which is a much warmer feeling than a similar crowd in say a 25,000 capacity ground where one feels like one is waving a broomstick round in a dustbin, or belching loudly in an empty cathedral.
 
On the subject of Cathedrals, the matchday programme (£3) is worthy of mention; one of the more interesting I've enjoyed for a long time, full of interesting facts about both Rotherham and Preston that I didn't know; i.e. that the spire on St Walburge's church in Preston is the tallest in England on a church not designated a cathedral.......
 
Once we sauntered back to Millmoor, we took the chance to explore the old ground from the outside instead of joining a queue of traffic. Surrounded on 3 sides by the scrapyard of its owner  CF Booths of Rotherham, it did seem kind of sad ; from one point behind the partially completed new stand, the pitch could be seen and it seemed well tended and cared for. Hence we struck up a conversation with the men on the gate who were employees of the same scrap metal merchant, and enquired who or what was using the ground now; they told us that nobody uses it anymore at all; the old groundsman still turns up twice a week out of love for the old place and does what he can to look after the pitch. 

Millmoor - Still being cared for...

Millmoor Football Ground Rotherham

Poor old Millmoor; the pitch looks like its desperate to be used again, the floodlights look down yearning to illuminate the hard men of Rotherham once more, and the old stands and terraces would love to host the good burghers of the town as they watch their team play; but sadly that will never happen. Maybe another sports club may be glad to make use of the ground. It did stir some emotions to peer in and see the old railway end where in years gone by I both stood and sat to cheer on Preston NE.   

After the nostalgia of wallowing in Millmoor, we settled down to the journey home, abandoning the M1 in favour of the A57 then the A1 and had a very pleasant run home, very encouraged after 90 minutes of good football.  Full marks to Rotherham for building themselves a cracking new little stadium.  

Rotherham United v Aldershot Town
League Two
Saturday, April 27th, 2013, 3pm
Samuel Walker (Neutral fan)

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

Leicester's unusually (and frustratingly) high number of games picked for Sky Television meant another Friday night fixture for the Foxes, and due to school commitments I was unable to go. To make up for it, dad offered to take me to Rotherham for their final home game against Aldershot. Rotherham were all but promoted, and Aldershot all but relegated, but there was still everything to play for.

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

Living in Norwich, we went by train. I met dad at Peterborough and we took the train to Rotherham, via a change at Doncaster. We arrived in Rotherham at around 12:30, in the middle of the pouring rain.

3. What you did before the game? Pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?
 
We had lunch at a small café in the middle of Rotherham market, and after a quick look around the town (aided in part by the driving rain) we set off for the ground. After asking for directions to the ground we found it relatively easy.

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

I'm usually a bit sceptical about new grounds, having been to many myself in the past few years I have noticed not too much difference between them. However the New York Stadium stood out from the rest and due to the high stands it certainly looked bigger than its 12,000 capacity. One of the main striking features was its descending roof, by descending in steps rather than the traditional curve.
                   
5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game itself was a cracker. The writing was already on the wall for Aldershot Town, but to their credit, the 300-odd fans who'd travelled from Hampshire got behind their team right to the very end. Rotherham made a flying start and could have gone ahead within three minutes, but the first half remained goalless. The second half started much the same as the first, and Rotherham got the goal they'd been waiting for on 64 minutes, after Shots keeper Jamie Young dropped a free-kick straight into the path of Johnny Mullins, to send the sell-out crowd into raptures. Aldershot to their credit carried on to the end and almost got an unlikely equaliser in the 90th minute, but Rotherham managed to clear their lines in time. From the resulting goal-kick, Lee Frecklington broke free to lob his shot over Jamie Young, prompting a pitch invasion from all sides. A second pitch invasion occurred after the final whistle, though the players did eventually return for a lap of honour.

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

We left the ground at around 5:25 to get the train back to Peterborough (and finding ourselves sharing a carriage from Doncaster to Peterborough with some very happy, noisy and a little tipsy Brighton fans who had been at Leeds were celebrating getting into the playoffs). We arrived at Peterborough just in time for the Norwich train, and arrived back shortly after nine o'clock.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A very enjoyable and worthwhile afternoon. One particularly pleasing sight was Rotherham chairman Tony Stewart making an announcement over the PA system before the match, and the fans chanting "There's only one Tony Stewart" constantly throughout the match. After hearing about a pitch invasion at Wolves the same day in protest over their chairman's running of the club, to see a chairman so vocally appreciated was a refreshing sight, and after five years exiled in Sheffield, Rotherham truly have a place they can now call home.   

Rotherham United v Fleetwood Town
League Two
Saturday, April 13th, 2013, 3pm
Matthew Bowling (Fleetwood Town fan)

1. Why were you looking forward to going to the ground?

I was looking forward because it's a new stadium, and it's a football ground that I haven't been to before.

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

The ground was easy to find we just stuck with the M62/M60, a very nice run through the hills as you hit the Yorkshire Dales, it was actually quite quiet for it being a Saturday afternoon. The ground is easy to find as you follow the route to the old ground and the new stadium soon appears, you can't really miss it. We bought a car parking permit for the stadium which we booked in advance, so no worries there. 

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

We arrived at the stadium and went straight into the ground and just checked out the away stand facilities which good.

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

The ground does look very impressive from outside and that continues inside, with circular floodlights, very good leg room, good views from every seat. The steps are quite steep so if you are at the top you need to watch your step. The ground is similar on all 4 sides and this generated an okay atmosphere and quite a bit of noise from the stands.

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

The atmosphere seemed to mostly coming from our small number of travelling fans. The attendance was 7,360, the home fans didn't make much atmosphere which was disappointing. Rotherham took the lead after 3 minutes when our keeper made a poor clearance straight to a Rotherham forward, who probably couldn't believe his luck and the ball ended up in the bottom corner. Their lead was short lived, when we equalised after a scramble in the box the ball fell to David Ball who shot the ball in the corner. The stewards seemed friendly and didn't tell us to sit down during the game. There was only pies on the food menu and the people who I asked who had them said they were okay but not great. Even though there was only one catering facility in the stand, it wasn't a problem as we only had around 300 fans in attendance. The facilities were alright with two toilet blocks in the in the stand which were more than adequate. In the second half Rotherham started to improve iand took the lead again through Kieran Agard, after some poor defending by Fleetwood. Unfortunately Fleetwood couldn't mount a comeback an the game ended 2-1 to the home side. 

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

We had to wait for about 10/15 minutes in the car park because the police made sure that all the fans had gone away to the main road before they let us out, when we eventually got out the journey back was no problem at all, similar to the journey there.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Good day out overall,  a very impressive stadium. Although more of an atmosphere would have been better. Annoyed that we lost because that ended our play-off hopes for good. However, I would recommend anyone to go to the stadium and I would personally visit again.   

Rotherham United v Chesterfield
League Two
Saturday, February 16th, 2013, 3pm
Andy Ford (Chesterfield fan)

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

I was really looking forward to visiting the New York Stadium for a variety of  reasons. Primarily because it was a new ground to visit. Secondly many Rotherham supporters had been bigging up how good it was before the game, even dome had claimed in the press that it is a mini Emirates stadium! Thirdly to see if the extra £8 million they spent on building it compared to our £13 million total cost was worth it. Fourthly because they are local rivals and the result was fairly crucial to both teams respective promotion ambitions and finally because it simply had to be better than the Don Valley Stadium......which was a truly awful place to watch a match!

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

The journey took all of 25 minutes by car as the M1 was fairly empty and we got there pretty early to avoid the pre-match traffic and have a couple of pints. We initially tried to park on the road near the old Millmoor where we always used to park but found that was now coned off, so parked on the other side of the dual carriageway near to the ground for £4 in a industrial/factory unit car park. We chose that rather than a much larger car park next to it which cost £3 as that looked like it would be a nightmare to get out of and the one we were in led straight onto the dual carriageway for a quick post match escape!

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

We walked up into the town centre and by-passed a couple of pubs which contained assorted Stone Island and Burberry clad locals playing 'spot the Spireite' and went into a Wetherspoons on the High Street called the Corn Law Rhymer. It was absolutely packed with Rotherham fans, which given that the match was going to be very well attended was no surprise. As there has been a history of trouble between us and given tensions were running high we kept ourselves to ourselves and quietly enjoyed a couple of decent cheap pints of Ruddles! Whilst listening to various songs about where they wanted to shove our crooked spire…..which amused me no end! I wouldn’t describe it as a friendly atmosphere but it wasn’t that hostile either and we had a good chat to some Rotherham fans on the walk down to the ground, shook hands, wished each other luck (though not that much) and  went our respective ways which was nice. 

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

The ground looks very impressive from the outside and looks much bigger than it’s 12,000 or so capacity. This is primarily due to the very, very steep rake of the steps, which I guess someone  (through age or alcohol) will probably end up falling down one day. I heard one elderly Spireite clambering up them complaining of altitude sickness and he was only half joking. That said, the seats, leg room and view from the away end are excellent, but just to emphasise how unecessary it is to have a rise of 2 steps between each row the bloke sat in front of me stood up and I could just about still see the match whilst still sitting down! 

We sold our allocation of 2,500 and I spotted a few Spireite’s I knew sat quietly in the home stand nearest us. They had left the seats in both corners next to the away end empty as a buffer zone, which makes me question the wisdom of ’bowl’ type stadiums as its costs millions to fill corner’s with seats that are invariably going to be empty due to segregation!  

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

The Chesterfield supporters present were in very good voice throughout and created a good atmosphere but I didn’t hear much noise from the home fans, which may have been because I was sat near the Spireite choir or maybe because their vocal element haven’t decided where to congregate  in the new ground. Either way it was surprising as Chesterfield were woeful from start to finish and it pains me to say Rotherham deserved 1-0 the win, which effectively puts paid to our promotion hopes! 

The concourse under the stands was quite tight considering the grounds large footprint and probably  badly designed,  as there appeared to be more room in the toilets than outside! The pie and pint were fine…usual football fayre but nothing special but the queuss for them were horrendous.

The stewards were very good in the main, polite and particularly sensible when the Chesterfield fans behind the goal started playing up as they wanted to stand rather than sit. The stewards quickly let them move into the segregated area in the corner and let them stand and sing which made a refreshing change. The most amusing bit on the day for me happened when a steward told my mate he couldn’t smoke in the ground….he duly pointed out it was an electric ‘fake’ fag as he’s trying to quit, but the steward still insisted that it was illegal! Not sure who was right but the five minute debate was a cracker!  

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

Given that Chesterfield’s performance was abysmal and the prospect of being stuck in the 11,300 crowd trying to get out didn’t fill my heart with joy so we decided to leg it a couple of  minutes before the final whistle and getting away was no problem for us. That said there was a very heavy police presence and the two sets of supporters were well segregated until they hit the main road.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A day to forget for any Spireite and I’m sure the Rotherham fans enjoyed their moment of glory, which will never surpass the 5-0 spanking we gave them on their first visit to our new ground! 

Is the stadium worth £21 million………No it isn’t! 

They could and should have got at least a 15,000 capacity for that money. 

Is it a stadium they can be proud of and is it a hundred times better that Millmoor or The Don Valley…of course it is!

I look forward to my next visit……I just hope the Chesterfield team decide to turn up next time!   

Rotherham United v Plymouth Argyle
League Two
Saturday October 27th 2012, 3pm 
James Prentice (Doing the 92)

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

Other than the chance to tick off another ground as part of my ongoing quest to ‘do the 92’, I was interested to see whether Rotherham had continued the trend of lower league sides such as Chesterfield in building an architecturally-pleasing new stadium. After being depressed at the bland and thoughtless efforts of grounds like Scunthorpe and Walsall whilst on my travels, I left with high hopes that the New York Stadium would follow where Chesterfield’s B2Net had left off. Promisingly, the pictures I had seen suggested I was in for a treat!

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

I made the short 45-mile journey by car from my home in Lincoln and arrived at around 1.30pm, with no problems encountered. The ground was really easy to find, situated just off the main dual carriageway into the town (around three miles from Junction 33 of the M1). I took the advice of this website as to street parking around Rotherham’s old Millmoor home and this was fairly plentiful, with no parking restrictions in force. One thing I would suggest is to park up at least an hour before kick-off if using this area as spaces soon disappeared. I did notice that there is a manned paid-for parking area at the Millmoor ground and there are signs for this from the main road, but the charge was not advertised.

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

I took my two lovely children to the game so therefore had a break from the usual pre-match ritual of a visit to a chippy and at least one local watering hold! Before the game we went for a look at Millmoor, which is still sadly sitting empty and unused. I went to this ground only once, shortly before it closed in 2008, and whilst not aesthetically pleasing it was steeped in local folklore and the scene of many happy years for the club before they were sent into exile at the Don Valley Stadium. After almost shedding a tear for this loveable old ground, we went to collect our tickets. Fans might like to note that pre-booked tickets are available from a table inside the club shop, although it is an idea to take your printed booking confirmation with you if seats are secured over the internet as not all of my tickets printed off! The Rotherham fans seemed relatively happy and harmless – a far cry from some of the battles I remember them having with Lincoln over the years!

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

The outside of the ground looks pretty steep and imposing. This theme is continued inside, with all stands being built at quite an angle, which reminds me somewhat of Tynecastle, although this affords an excellent view of the pitch from any angle. The steepness of the ground does make it look extremely compact from inside, which may help Rotherham build an excellent atmosphere over the coming years, particularly if their good home form continues to give them something to shout about! The away fans were located towards one side of the Morrisons stand. The similarly-designed home fans’ end was packed out by kick off. Both roofs are built at a gradient, gradually making their way down from the tallest side-stand (West Stand), to the significantly smaller Ben Bennett family stand.

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

I was excited by kick-off given that Rotherham’s form had improved since Steve Evans returned from his six-match stadium ban, whilst Plymouth had won three out of their last four. This suggested that the game could be a goal-fest full of free-flowing, attacking football, but could potentially end up with two similarly-matched sides cancelling one another out. Sadly it turned out to be the latter scenario, with Rotherham edging over the line with the only goal of the game coming from close range midway through the second half. The result was a tad harsh on a well-organised Plymouth side, although their poor final ball meant they were the architects of their own downfall.

The atmosphere seemed good at kick off but dropped dramatically during the course of the game, with the travelling fans making most of what little noise there was. Even the goal didn’t seem to rouse a lot of the Rotherham faithful. The good old Pukka Pie is sold at the ground (£3.00) and there is draught beer and cider available at £3.00 per pint (Strongbow, Fosters, John Smiths). The concourses seemed wide enough given that the stand was fairly full and the toilets were clean and sparking as should be expected at a new ground. The stewards seemed pretty friendly and innocuous, although one incident of note came ten minutes from the end, when a couple and their child were escorted out by stewards for swearing and gesturing to the Plymouth fans. They initially refused to leave, meaning that around 10 of Rotherham’s Finest were called in to remove them from the premises! What a depressing end to a family day out!

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

We left five minutes before the end to make the short journey back to the car and were straight on the road home, with no problems encountered. Upon exiting the ground, I heard a couple of ‘non-Rotherham’ accents behind me, turned round and got chatting to a couple of kindly older gents who are groundhoppers and had come up to tick the New York stadium off their list. They were ninety-two club members and both said they were arranging a trip to Fleetwood Town to re-complete their marathon of ground visits. I certainly hope I am still visiting grounds with such enthusiasm when I am their age! On a similar note, I noticed a variety of accents when picking up my tickets, which suggested that there were a fair few other groundhoppers who had made the journey. I am sure there will be many more over the course of the season!

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I came away feeling happy to have completed another ground and pleased at the design and layout of the New York. The only grumble I could think of is that the stadium lacks an authentic look, which could perhaps have been borrowed with using some old signs and memorabilia from Millmoor. One thing I hate seeing at new grounds are some of the bland ‘Club Shop’ and ‘Box Office’ signs that suggest fans are going to any old entertainment venue rather than the plush new home of a proud club.

That said, the stadium is brilliantly positioned next to the town centre, is near main roads and is only a few minutes from the railway station. The sight lines are excellent and the facilities and leg room is comfortable.

Most importantly, though, Rotherham now have a home of their own back in the town. It is one that they can be proud of and I am sure it will serve them well for many years to come.    

Rotherham United v York City
Johnstones Paint Trophy 1st Round
Tuesday September 4th 2012, 7.30pm 
Stuart Braidley (York City fan)

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

New ground, literally and first appearance in the competition for a while

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

Journey was easy as it was midweek, but I can imagine a Saturday game may be a little more tricky due to the Town Centre location.  Car Parks a plenty but again, Saturdays may be more tricky

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

With the Town Centre location it brings with it a wide a varied arrange of drinking hostelries and eating establishments

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

Looks impressive from the outside although not completely finished yet but inside it does seem a very small ground and looks like it’s been done on the cheap. The seating areas are quite steep and the stadium has the worse PA system that I’ve ever heard.  Worse than a railway station platform

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

JPT 1st round – Midweek so the atmosphere wasn’t bouncing, only 4,000 fans in a 12,000 seater stadium.  Our 400 away fans made a lot more noise.  Stewards very strict and we weren’t allowed to bring flags into the ground and we heard that out ‘drum’ was turned away as well.  Only 1 catering outlet open in our stand but as there were only 400 fans, this wasn’t an issue

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

Not too bad, away quite quickly but again, weekends may be different.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out: 

A new stadium and another ticked off the list, but I would describe the footballing experience as OK.  York won 1-0 so that part was excellent.   

Rotherham United v Bradford City
League Two 
Saturday September 1st 2012, 3pm 
Michael Horsfall (Bradford City fan)

1The main reason that I was looking forward to the match was that matches between Rotherham and Bradford generally generate a great atmosphere. After a few years of watching this match at the Don Valley I couldn’t wait to taste the atmosphere of the New York Stadium, especially since we (Bradford City) had sold out the 2,200 away end.

The journey was very easy as it was only a 25 minute train journey from where I live. The ground is very easy to find as it is just a 5 minute walk from the train station and is easily seen from link roads into the town. Car parking did not appear to be a problem from what I could see around the ground.

I found the home fans very friendly around the ground both before and after the game. I tried out 2 bars before the game.  The first was Liquid Envy which in about 200 yards from the ground.  The drinks only cost £2.00 per pint but you get what you pay for.  The beer was flat and warm so we tried to find another bar in the Town Centre.  This was difficult however, with most bars now allowing away fans in.  We did however find one, the Bridge Inn. This was friendly with a good selection of real ales.

First impressions of the ground were very good.  A modern stadium that stood out a mile from it’s surroundings.  From the outside it was hard to believe that this ground only held 12,000 seats.  Upon entry into the stadium I was again impressed. The facilities were of the highest quality and the food / drink was excellent. I had a Pie and a pint which cost £6.00. I had a very good view of the whole ground from where I was sat, although some people may need to be aware that it is quite steep. I was happy about this however because it meant that there was ample leg room.  

View From The Away Section

View from the away stand at New York Stadium Rotherham

The game itself did not pan out as well as I had hoped. 1-0 down inside 2 minutes is never a good thing but to be 3-0 down by half time is even worse. Despite this, I must say that the atmosphere was excellent throughout by both sets of supporters. The stewards did seem a little petty though, bursting the hundreds of balloons at the front of the away end which held the game up for about 5 minutes.

Bradford City Fans At The Game

Away fans at New York City Rotherham

It was easy to get away from the ground after the game as far as the train station. If only it was as easy as that from then on. There was only 1 train an hour heading for Leeds and it only had 2 coaches which was not good when the station was heaving with football fans. I had to get a train to Doncaster and change which added about an hour to my journey.

All in all it was an excellent day out despite losing 4-0 in the end. I would recommend this ground to anyone wishing to attend an away game, although be aware that you may come away empty handed as Rotherham seem to have a new lease of life since moving from the Don Valley to the New York Stadium.

Rotherham United v Burton Albion
League Two
Saturday August 18th 2012, 3pm 
Mike Kimberley (Ninety-Two Club)

I was looking forward to the first day of the new campaign and had given up my Palace season ticket to do one of the two new grounds to the League this season. I travelled by train with my wife Marie arriving at Rotherham Central just before mid-day. Our first task was to collect the tickets from the ground. 

The New York Stadium is well sign posted from the station and believing (wrongly) a sign post had been turned round, proceeded to the new-looking floodlight pylons I could see, only to realize we were heading for Millmoor. A kindly local walked with us most of the way to the new ground. My error only put five minutes on the journey but please remember to follow the signs. The exterior of New York Stadium is very impressive and looks both slick and imposing. Having collected the tickets I was returning towards town and a watering hole when Steve Evans, Rotherham’s new Manager passed and gave me a cheery “hello”.

I had selected the Rhinoceros pub in Bridgegate in order to be a Ninety-Two Club meeting point. This is one of a number of pubs within five minutes walk of the station all of which seemed well populated. The Rhinoceros was quite busy with pre-match fans and food and drink was reasonable as you would expect in a Wetherspoons. Around ten members of the Ninety-Two Club met there including Duncan Adams who is this web site owner and to whom we all owe a thank you for the information he provides which we need to get to various venues.

The ground is about 10 minutes walk from the Rhinoceros. The build of the ground is good with comfortable seats and good leg room. The atmosphere inside was party-like for the first ever competitive fixture and went very much Rotherham’s way when they were awarded a penalty in the fourth minute. The 2-0 score line at half time flattered Rotherham slightly but when Burton were reduced to ten men this was only ever going to be a convincing home win. Rotherham running out 3-0 winners in front of a sell-out crowd of 11,411.

It was a warm and humid afternoon and a most enjoyable day out. We returned south by train from central with many Burton fans, changing at Sheffield. On the train were a group of Barnsley fans, a Shrewsbury fan and a chap within reach of finishing the 92 this season which made for a pleasant conversation. We arrived home in time for a quick take away and Match of the Day. A great day out!

Rotherham United v Sheffield United
Pre Season Friendly
Tuesday July 31st 2012, 7.45pm 
Sam Blackburn (Sheffield United fan)

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

I was looking foward to seeing Rotherham's New York stadium. It was good to go to a new ground and to see Rotherham back in their home city and not at the dire Don Valley Stadium. After seeing SUFC play Rotherham at three different grounds it was good to see them in their rightful place.

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

As I was traveling from Sheffield it wasn’t much of a hassle. I got to the ground at about 6:30pm and found some off street parking. There is plenty around Rotherham but you have to get there early to get a decent spot

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

Before the game we went hunting for food. As the town centre is only a brief 5 minute walk away you found all the mod cons and respectable eating establishment. There are a few pubs around the ground but didn’t venture in as the local rivalry is always a factor to these sorts of games and therefore segregating the pubs into home fans only. There were a few burger vans around the ground to visit as well.

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

From the outside the ground looks massive and very impressive. When travelling over the bypass you can see the floodlights and it brings back the nostalgia of an old fashioned football ground. When walking up to its very impressive. The stadium is still not completed yet so when it is fully done I am sure this will be a cracking ground for away supports to visit

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

As the game was a friendly it was a non-descript game really. Although the ground was near full with an attendance of 11,033 which made to a very good atmosphere. The acoustics are very good in the ground and the noise travels. As for the stewarding very substandard, it is done by G4S a security company and it just seemed to be a lot of bouncers and not stewards which was a little disconcerting. They were very heavy handed at times and really didn’t know what they were doing. The facilities are still to be decided as the ground is not fully completed, but the entire kiosk inside were open and the prices were very good.

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

Getting away was relatively easy and was home for 10:10pm.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out: 

Very good ground and will be a cracking day out for a competitive match. There was 3500 in the away end the noise was fantastic. Rotherham finally has a ground to be proud of.    

Rotherham United v Doncaster Rovers
Pre Season Friendly
Tuesday July 24th 2012, 7.45pm 
Paul Davis (Doncaster Rovers fan)

I was particularly looking forward to this game not just because of the new ground but because of the whole symmetry of the fixture. I spent 8 years in the 80's & 90's working for the company on whose land the ground was built but had only visited Rotherham a couple of times in the intervening years. So , a chance to look at the town again and with the added attraction of a new ground and Donny playing.

Despite the ground being in the town it is an easy journey by car , bus and train sitting as it does just yards from the main avoiding road which in turn is no more than 3 miles from the MI " Sheffield Parkway " junction.The railway and bus stations are a 5 & 6 minute walk away respectively. Car parking however is a little more difficult, space outside the ground is very limited so I would suggest driving past the ground entrance and turning right at the T junction lights and following signs to the town car parks.

Being so centrally situated there are plenty of pubs and eateries. The two Wetherspoon pubs The Rhinoceros and The Bluecoat fit the bill nicely with the latter being the better of the two, slightly off the beaten track and quieter.  

First impression of the ground coming from the town was disappointing. A new buiding fronts the main road and hides most of the stadium, on walking further it transpires that the original  offices of my old company are still standing in a sorry and dilapidated state, they had been Grade 2 listed. Having said that and noted that there was still quite a bit of tidying to do around the edges the view of the stadium arriving from the opposite side would be magnificent. 

Inside, the ground thankfully has a lot of character. The Main Stand which houses all the offices and private boxes is higher than the two similar sized stands behind the goal and in turn they are higher than the basic stand covering the far side of the pitch. As the guide says though what makes this stand so interesting are the two floodlights above it which, other than a few lights attached to the roof of the main stand, light the whole ground. Overall they balance the ground perfectly. The away end had large comfy seats plus the viewing and sight lines were excellent. The stewards were finding their way too but were friendly and helpful, the only downside was one small kiosk open to serve 1400+ visitors so I did not get near it. Having said that with Pukka Pies sponsoring one of the stands and with this being Rotherham expect tasty food at reasonable prices. 

As for the game I am happy it was only a friendly. The Rovers are undergoing serious team re-building after last seasons relegation with players only joining after others have moved and funds have been freed.up. Consequently our back four was two full backs and two midfielders. We did however take a lead early in the second half but Rotherham came back with two goals to earn a deserved win and look as if they have a good season ahead.

The only similarity to Millmoor left is that visiting fans have to walk past the home fans end to get to and from their seats but there was no trouble and the Police had closed the main road to cars so we could disperse quickly.

Rotherham are and always will be our main rivals, both clubs have been through recent bad times and neither set of fans has cared about the others predicament .So through gritted teeth I would say that Rotherham have finally got themselves a modern, well designed ground to be proud of and the basis of a team to match.

Updated 7th February 2015

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