|What's The Oval
External View (photo)
What Is It Like For Visiting Supporters?
Looking Towards The Away Terrace (photo)
Where To Drink?
Looking Towards Home Terrace (photo)
How To Get There By Car & Where To Park
Away Terrace (photo)
Home Terrace (photo)
The Oval Location Map
|What's The Oval Like?|
The Oval is located in a
residential area of east Belfast, close to Belfast
City Airport and the City Centre. Home fans enter the
ground through a gateway at the end of Parkside Drive.
The car park leads onto the rear of the Main Stand
with its club shop, club offices and players dressing
rooms on the ground floor. Looking at the main stand
from pitch side, this tall but narrow stand dominates
the ground. Sitting to the left of the pitch towards
the curved (West) end the stand
originally had a small paddock area which has now been
converted to seats to form a family area, with a low
lightweight roof. Above it, raised a couple of metres
above pitch level is the steep upper tier seating
deck, complete with 2,720 red and green plastic seats.
The view from these seats is spectacular, not just of
the pitch but the dockyards and Harland and Wolfe
shipyard cranes in the foreground and Cave Hill in the
|In March 2003 the clubs shareholders decided to sell The Oval to a property developer for £3.5 million, paving the way for the club to build a proposed £7 million new stadium elsewhere in Belfast-most likely near to the existing ground behind the away terrace and A2 dual carriageway. However with the current economic climate it is unclear as to when this may actually take place. For now the club have pressed on with upgrading The Oval piece by piece when funds become available.|
|What Is It Like For Visiting Supporters?|
|Visitors are allocated an enclosed section of the curved (west) terrace behind the goal. Please note that the away section of the terrace is accessed by a separate covered walkway (See ground layout map). The terrace is open to the elements and although there is a tall pitch side fence around this side of the ground the terrace is tall enough to allow spectators to see over the fence and view the whole ground.|
|Where To Drink?|
The nearest pubs
and shops are in
|Looking Towards The Home Terrace|
|How To Get There By Car & Where To Park|
Antrim, Ballymena & the North:
Follow the M2 to South of Junction 1,pass over the River Lagan onto the M3 and turn off at the Odyssey Arena junction. Continue along the exit road, take a right turn into Sydenham Road, towards the Harland Technology Park.At the roundabout take the third exit which takes you back over the A2 Sydenham Bypass. Take a left turn into Mersey Street. The main entrance is at the end of Parkside Drive, on the left hand side.
From Lisburn, Portadown & the South:
Follow the M1 to Junction 1,continue along the A12 Westlink and join the M3 on the approach to Odyssey Arena.Pass over the River Lagan,and turn off at the Odyssey Arena junction.Continue along the exit road, take a right turn into Sydenham Road, towards the Harland Technology Park.At the roundabout take the third exit which takes you back over the A2 Sydenham Bypass. Take a left turn into Mersey Street. The main entrance is at the end of Parkside Drive, on the left hand side.
There is a car park at the ground, at the rear of the main stand though as there is only one entrance and exit gate getting away after a game is time consuming.
For a map showing the location of the ground see the Google map below, at the bottom of this page.
are two railway stations on the Belfast Central to
Bangor railway line that are within walking distance
from the ground. Bridge Street is the best option, a
three minute journey from Belfast Central Station will
bring you to this stop, and a safe 10 minute walk will
bring you to the ground. Sydenham Railway Station is the
next stop down the line, and takes 20 minutes to walk
from the station to the ground. Directions from Sydenham
Railway station are also shown below since it is the
nearest stop for fans arriving at Belfast City Airport.
Directions from Bridge Street Station:
Go over the footbridge, walk through the subway and turn left. This will lead you into a housing estate in Ballymacarett Road (featuring a mural to author C.S Lewis) .After a 5 minute walk you will see crossroads, take a left turn into Dee Street and you should catch a glimpse of the floodlights. Follow Dee Street as it turns to the right and just as you see the road go up hill towards the railway bridge, take a turn to the right into Mersey Street. The ground main entrance is a further 5 minute walk at the end of Parkgate Drive.
Directions from Sydenham Station:
From the housing estate side, follow Station Road to its end, turn right into Holywood Road, follow the road downhill and take a right turn into Park Avenue, then left into Connisbrook Avenue, and right into Mersey Street. The ground entrance is at the end of Parkside Drive, on the right hand side of the road.
Arriving in Belfast at Great Victoria Street Railway Station or Europa Bus Centre:
There is a taxi rank directly outside the bus/train station however as this will take you slowly through the busy city centre to The Oval on the east side of Belfast this will prove an expensive option. Alternatively, when you come out of the station entrance turn left, pass the opera house, and take a right turn into Howard Street. This will lead you towards City Hall. From here you have the option of walking to the ground, grabbing a taxi or picking up Metro Bus 3 (Holywood Road) from Donegal Square West bus stop. Since this bus does not go direct to the ground you will need to get off as it travels along Newtownards Road, then walk up Dee Street and take a right turn into Mersey Street. The entrance to The Oval is on the left hand side at the end of Parkside Drive.
is a taxi rank directly outside the terminal building,
and Airport Express Service 600 runs direct to Belfast
City centre at regular intervals, however there is no
direct bus link to The Oval from either the Airport or
the City Centre.
For those with time on their hands, the ground can be reached on foot in around 30 minutes. Turn right when you come out of the main terminal building, walk through the car park and alongside the A2 Sydenham Bypass,walk over the footbridge to Sydenham Railway Station. From here Metro Bus 3 can get you closer to the ground as it passes along Connsbrook Avenue or Newtownards Road, however if you prefer to keep walking,follow Station Road to its end,turn right into Holywood Road, follow the road downhill and take a right turn into Park Avenue,then left into Connisbrook Avenue, and right into Mersey Street.The ground entrance is at the end of Parkside Drive,on the right hand side of the road.
|Official Programme £3|
|The main Premier League rivalry is with Linfield from South Belfast, but also Crusaders and Cliftonville from North Belfast League club Dundela are near neighbours.|
|Northern Ireland Premier league 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.
Access their Belfast Hotels and 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.
|Google Area Map|
anything is incorrect or you have something to add,
me and I'll update the guide.
© Owen Pavey
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