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Meadow Lane
  Notts County v
Peterborough United
League One
Saturday, August 10th 2013, 3pm

Tom Banks
(Peterborough United fan)

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

After the dust had settled from Posh's heartbreaking exit from the Championship, there was a genuine tenacity around the club. We had been hard done by, and League One will pay for it. It was rather fitting then that our first away game in the league was against none other than Notts County, a hunting ground for Posh in the last decade. Given the locality of Nottingham, the 3pm kick-off and the demolition of Colchester in the League Cup, a great away following was to be expected. What's not to look forward to?

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

As I had a mate living in Nottingham, I opted to drive the distance with the lads and stay the night. The drive up is simple from Peterborough, and once in Nottingham the grounds are signposted and hard to miss (if in doubt, use a Sat Nav). We parked up at the house and got a taxi to town for some pints. Having been to the ground before in a car, I do remember there being parking in an industrial area near the ground, so driving to Meadow Lane is definitely a viable option.

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

We did what I guess most away fans in Nottingham do...Hooters! This pub was full of Posh fans (not to mention some posh looking girls!), although the home fans mixed freely without trouble. A word of warning: the girls had a contribution bucket for their staff-do and would take a donation whenever buying a pint; not good if you can't say no to a pretty face! A few more pints and chants later, we left for the ground (a 10 minute walk away). Just walk down London Road by the canal and turn left down Cattle Market Road. The home fans I spoke to seemed friendly and actually quite complementary about our club which is always nice to hear. Or it was the cider?

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

The most impressive stand is located behind the goal, akin to Tranmere's Prenton Park. Away fans used to be housed in that end, although now are given (in our case) a whole stand on the side of the pitch. The Kop now belongs to the Notts County singing section. The family stand behind the opposite goal on your left is a smaller, but still tidy affair. The stand opposite you is a large single-tiered job. The views are unrestricted and the seats, if you wish to sit, are adequate. A smart stadium, one Peterborough would do well to replicate.

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

Posh found themselves one down after a bullet header, but it was the motivation we needed to step things up. The goal was a minor blip as the rampant Posh were 4-1 up with 20 minutes left. Thanks to an unnecessary penalty conceded in stoppage time, the game finished Notts County 2-4 Posh. 1-4 sounds like more of a thrashing, but let's not be pedantic. The atmosphere from our end was great, with 2,102 Peterborians making the journey. It was disappointing though that the atmosphere from the County fans was non-existent, apart from a brief goal celebration and the occasional sound of groans. I've seen that Notts County can provide an atmosphere, so they must have just been stunned into silence by the presence of a majestic, magical, slick passing Posh side...or they just played badly. I had no problems with the stewards, who just accepted that the away fans will stand. My friend had a talking to following some standard footballing hand gestures, but that was the most of it. I didn't bother with any food or drink. It was refreshing to see an outside smoking area, something that is seldom available at football grounds these days.

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

We walked back up London Road for a lift. There was no trouble from what I saw and the roads didn't look congested.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Hooters makes this away day particularly interesting. The home fans seemed friendly and it was a relaxed day without incident. The ground itself is a tidy affair and definitely one of the better stadiums in the lower leagues. The large away following made up for the lacking home effort though. I would definitely recommend Meadow Lane, a real favourite from a Peterborough perspective.

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