Friday 3 July 2009


Falkirk has a modern stadium, opened as recently as 2004, and are a 'big' small club in the Scottish Premier League. The stadium is on the edge of town, about half an hour walk from the town centre. I visited it in mid June 2009. fortunately one of the main access gates was open ,as there was large scale building going on, with a brand new stand in the middle of being erected behind the far goal. I wasn't sure if I would actually get permission to take photos, if I asked someone, as-technically-I was on a building site. So I didn't walk round the whole ground, but got in and out as sharpish as I could! Luckily nobody pulled me up, and here are the results for you!

The signage like this emphasises how new the ground is, still being developed, as you will see.

This is the approach to the main stand.

It looks very imposing and smart.

This is the first sight you get, as you arrive from the town centre. I entered the ground through the open gates between the two stands, in the near corner on the left of this picture.

As we enter, at the corner, this is the main stand, along the side, to our right.

Looking towards the far end we see the new stand, under construction.

It looks exactly the same size & design as this one, up the near end.

Along the far side is a low, narrow 'temporary' stand. I would guess that there are eventually plans to build this up like the other three sides one day.

From behind the goal we get a better look at the main stand.

I walked to the far corner & took this shot of the temporary stand, down the far side, but didn't chance my luck by going further.

From this same corner we can see the new stand, the shell in place, but no seats yet.

And another angle of the main stand.

Now we turn back to the stand behind the goal, showing the seats for disabled fans at the front.

Looking upwards we see a banner, advertising the Bairns Trust.

Climbing up into this stand, I didn't mind getting spotted now, as I had snaps of all four sides, we look across the pitch.

And over to the the temporary structure.

With yet another shot, to our right, of the main stand.

Here we look across the stand, still behind the goal, from the back row.

And upwards, from the front.

We're now along the side, in front of the main stand.

And walk further along, towards the dugouts, and tunnel.

Here is one of the dugouts.

And the tunnel itself. I wanted to venture down it, but by now I was getting a few funny looks from builders & men in suits, so I didn't risk it! ;-)

This gate was in front of the tunnel, as you come onto the pich, I wondered if it was keepsake from their old ground?

One last look at the already completed stand behind the goal, before we leave.

One final shot. the new stand, being constructed, from outside the stadium.

Thursday 2 July 2009

Camelon Juniors

Not my usual set of photos for Camelon Juniors. They play in the SJFA East Region Super League. Camelon is a small town, on the outskirts of Falkirk. What makes these pictures 'unusual' is that there are not many of them, as I couldn't find a way to gain access to the ground. Not surprising really, as it was a Thursday afternoon! But as it is a place i shall never go back to I tried to get a few pictures from outside, so hopefully you will get a little flavour of the place.

This is the social club building, from the road.

Further along are the turnstiles.

Through a gap we look down one of the touchlines.

And over to what appears to look like the main stand, with the corner of the terrace behind this goal in view, in the foreground.

Another very similar snap, of roughly the same area, here.

Moving on there is this fading club mural, of sorts, on the wall outside.

From the next corner we get a view of the other side, with some terracing before the cover.

Looking through the same fence we see the cover on the far side, where the social club is.

Up above the ground now, on a footpath by the canal, we get a shot of that cover, through the trees.

And a glimpse of the terrace behind the goal, from where we were looking, from the car park.

Further along there's another gap, for a shot of the open terracing, leading to the far corner opposite.

And that's it I'm afraid. I'm sure you'll all agree though that something is better than nothing! It is disappointing when you try to find a ground and then can't get in, but that's the luck of the draw I suppose! Downers like this are far outweighed by the 'buzz' when you do manage to gain entry to a ground, whether there's people on site or not! ;-)

Wednesday 1 July 2009

East Stirlingshire-Firs Park

I was extremely fortunate to visit Firs Park. East Stirlingshire are a Scottish League club from Falkirk, & I had no intention really of going there. I was in Glasgow for a long weekend in mid June & a couple of weeks before I travelled there was a posting on the always informative Tony Kempster (RIP) messageboard that said the Club were finally moving out of their premises on Monday 15th June, & supporters were welcome to have one last look at the place. This was around the very weekend I was up in Scotland! How could I miss an opportunity like that?

So here we take a walk around the former home of The Shire...

This wasn't the main entrance, but the only way in from te road at the top of these stairs.

The grass was starting to be overgrown, as you can see. Behind this goal, to the right as we came in, there is just this ugly concrete wall, no spectator area whatsoever.

Looking over to the far side we see a covered terrace.

And down the side, in front of us, we see the main grandstand. This is the way we're gonig to walk round the ground, in a clockwise direction.

Here we have a good shot of the main stand, from on the pitch.

A nice individual touch, with the club crest on top.

An advertising hoarding for a local brewery in honour of the club.

The dugouts are in front of the stand, old style ones, sunk into the ground.

We climb up into the stand, and look across the seats.

From up here we see over to the far side, & the covered terrace.

Still in the seats, this time look back across, in the other direction.

The directors' seats are towards the front.

Still up in the stand, we are standing just above the dugouts here.

Now we're back at pitch level. It looks like there may have been some buildings here, that are already gone, as they probably have the other side of the stand.

As we move along we look over to the old open terrace behind the goal.

Before we go there we glance back to the stand we've just left behind.

We get to the terrace behind the goal. It is overgrown, and appears to have been roped off, for safety purposes, when it was last in use.

I am left wondering if specatators were actually allowed in this area when Firs Park was still used to stage games, or whether this pathway was just allowed for access to either side of the ground.

Looking carefully at the weeds, you can see the old supports for the terracing.

Clearly quite overgrown, as you can see for yourself.

Behind the goal, we get the stand in the background.

This photo gives you a good idea of the size of the open terrace.

Here are the steps leading down, from the next corner.

Past this, in the corner, is the main turnstile block.

Here is the view from out in the street. Presumably this is how most fans would remember going to East Stirlingshire.

Back inside the ground, past the turnstiles in the corner, is this old toilet block.

Traditionally basic inside! Could I have made history by being the last person ever to have a wee in here? ;-)

There was a small open shed in this block. And I was surprised to see this very old pre-decimal sign on the floor!

We're now moving on to the terrace along the side, and from up here we look back down to the turnstiles and toilets.

These are the steps leading up to this section of terracing.

Here we step back, and get a good view of the covered terrace.

Another shot of it, from on the pitch.

At the same spot we look back, behind the goal we've just walked from.

Here we have a section of terrace, with the Scottish League sponsor's advertising board.

And another from the club itself.

Now we're back on the terrace. At the back we look along the covered area.

Now under the 'shed' itself, we look over to the main stand.

And, a bit further along, back down the covered terrace.

Just past the cover, set behind it, is this old turnstile area, which looks as though it's been disused for a few years.

This is what it looks like from the other side, outside the ground.

The terrace past the cover is fenced off.

This part of terrace takes us up to the concrete perimeter wall, sectioned off, presumably fallen into disrepair, while the ground was still in use.

Another glance back, showing the fence from the other side.

And so we're back behind the 'empty' end, going back to the corner where we started our tour.

This seemed strange to me. accepting advertising from your bigger local rivals, across town.

Behind the net we look over to the main stand for the last time.

So farewell Firs Park. I never saw a match here, but was glad I got to view it before demolition.