Voilà, ci-dessous vous trouverez un guide pour ceux qui ont envie de voyager voir les Blues à la source. Il a été écrit par les gens de matchhotels.com et pour l’instant n’est disponible qu’en anglais. Je le traduirai dès que possible.
Si jamais vous avez envie de visiter St Andrews n’hésitez pas à contacter le Blues Exile pour ses conseils. Il y a également un lien à droit pour chercher des hôtels.
Pour aller au ville de Birmingham, je vous n’expliquerai pas, il faut intérroger les sites des compagnies aériennes (Air France, British Airways, FlyBe, etc etc etc) ou étudier un atlas routier…
Birmingham City stadium guide
Le stade / About the stadium
Birmingham play their home games at St Andrew’s, a 30,079 capacity stadium in the Bordesley area of the city. They have played there since 1906, when they moved from their previous home, Muntz Street, just a kilometre away.
The original St Andrew’s could hold as many as 75,000 people, housed in one grandstand and a large, uncovered terrace; the record attendance, variously recorded at 66,844 or 67,341, was set an a 1939 FA Cup tie against Everton. Following damage to the stadium during the Second World War, the ground was refurbished and another stand added.
Over the next decades the ground became dilapidated, and in line with the Taylor Report, published in January 1990 after the Hillsborough disaster, a development programme was started in 1993 to convert St Andrew’s to an all-seater stadium.
The stadium has four stands. Two of them, the Main Stand (the smallest stand) and the Gil Merrick Stand (formerly the Railway Stand), are two-tiered; the Kop Stand and the Tilton Road Stand are one continuous L-shaped single tier.
Comment d’y aller / How to get there
The nearest railway station to the stadium is Bordesley, on the Birmingham to Stratford Line between Moor Street and Small Heath stations, which has regular services only on match days.
The stadium is a 20-minute walk from New Street station, Birmingham’s main station, which is served by direct trains from across the country. It is about 15 minutes from Moor Street, which is served by trains from London Marylebone.
Birmingham’s National Express coach hub, Digbeth Coach Station, is a 15-minute walk away. Local buses run along the Coventry Road past the ground.
There is very limited parking at the stadium itself, but a secure outdoor car park is available at Birmingham Wheels Park, less than 15 minutes’ walk away. Parking is permitted in the streets surrounding the ground.
Où rester / Where to stay
The closest hotel to the stadium is the Ibis Birmingham Bordesley Circus, about a five-minute walk away. This 87-room budget hotel is fairly basic, but the neutrally decorated en-suite rooms are fairly spacious. There is a restaurant and a 24-hour bar, as well as space for 45 cars, which is very handy so close to the stadium.
Another Birmingham City hotel is the Crowne Plaza Birmingham. Situated in the city centre, this hotel is a little more upmarket, featuring 312 luxurious rooms, decorated in bold but tasteful colour schemes, with excellent en-suites and huge beds. LCD TVs are standard and wireless internet is available in all rooms, though there is an ‘access fee’ of £5. There is also a well-resourced but slightly expensive restaurant.
Also in the city centre is the Hyatt Regency Birmingham, a modern glass and steel mini-scraper with 319 rooms. Probably the finest hotel in Birmingham, even the most basic rooms (en-suite, of course) have floor-to-ceiling windows for superb panoramic views over the city. Both the bar and the restaurant are classy, stylish places, and there is an indulgent spa and fitness centre, complete with swimming pool, sauna and steam room.
Où boir un verre / Where to drink
Most of the pubs around the stadium are for home supporters only on match days, so if you fit that category you shouldn’t have much trouble. In any case, alcohol is served inside the stadium.
There are quite a few good away-friendly pubs around St Andrew’s, including The Wellington on Bennetts Hill, an award-winning pub with at least 16 ales on at any one time, and The Anchor Inn, a four-time Birmingham CAMRA Pub of the Year.
There is also The Briar Rose, a perfectly acceptable Wetherspoons with the usual wide selection of drinks, and The Cricketers Arms, the closest pub to the ground for away fans.