Farnborough are a new club, one that rose out of the ashes of the old Farnborough Town FC. I took these photos when I was in the area on 18th February 2010. To say it's changed since I was last there is an understatement! If my memory is right, & don't take that for granted, the seats on the far side were being developed, and there was no cover behind the goal. That was for a midweek Dulwich Hamlet reserve game.
As you will see from these snaps a new stand is currently being built behind one of the goals. It will be an impressive ground when complete, & with the progress being made on it, I wouldn't be surprised to see further phased development over the next few years.
Provided they are run properly, instead of the financial mess their predecessors got into, this ground will be a supurb example of how you can build up a small stadium into one that could actually sustain Football League status, if ever they were to progress that far.
The ground is well signposted, albeit old ones for the previous club. I bet you never realised this small part of Hampshire was such a sporting oasis!
Walking down Cherrywood Road you cannot fail to be impressed with the new structure going up.
This is how I've always remembered the place. Small stand, and huge car park.
But how it's changed! This is one of the new entrances.
Working within the heart of their community to attract new support.
An inviting sign on the back of the stand.
I get into the ground through an open gate, behind the stand. But for the purposes of our 'tour' we are going to pretend we have entered through the new turnstiles we have just seen, in the corner. Here they are, from inside.
To our right is the new stand, going up behind the goal.
Looking across the pitch we see more seating , running the full length of the far side.
And down the near side we see the small main stand on the left, with terracing at the far end.
We are going to head this way, clockwise round the ground.
Once through the turnstiles there is a brick building immediately to our left. On it are superb posters, detailing the history of football in the town, about the old club & the current one.
Here is an old detail of the main stand.
They clearly see the new incarnation as a continuation of the old one.
Clearly proud of previous FA Cup exploits.
And the start of the current club.
Which includes a picture from the Godalming Town ground.
Past that display is the club shop & tea bar, which I remember from years past.
We've now reached the main stand, with an unusual two steps of terracing next to it.
Just before we reach this there is this 'turnstile' on the left. I'm not sure if this an old one being demolished, or a new block being built.
Now we're by the main stand & it's time to tread carefully on the rain saturated pitch. Here we look over to the far side, and the dugouts.
Walking along we see the new stand again.
And back to the main stand, which appears to be one structure built next to another. I'm pretty sure one is older than the other, but not 100%. That's only from memory...
And now we look to the fourth side, the terrace behind the far goal.
Here we look at the dugouts, with the impressive club hoardings attached to the pylons. Very smart!
Turning around we are now facing the main stand.
Now looking toward the corner opposite to where we came in, we see an electronic scoreboard behind the goal.
In front of the stand opposite the dugouts on the far side are these new roofless ones, so I would guess the far side ones are no longer used.
This is a close up of the home one.
We now climb up into the old main stand, and look to our right at the new structure.
From up here we look across the pitch, and you can appreciate how wet it's been!
At the back of the stand we look across the seating.
This is the press area, at the back.
This stand is named after a Club stalwart Charles Mortimer, but I have info on him, nor do i know what cup he is holding aloft in the picture.
The view over the halfway line, pillar an' all!
From the end of the stand we look to our left, and the cover behind the goal.
Moving toward the front of the stand we look back through it, the glass fronting at the back being a bar area.
The other direction we see the new stand & dug outs at the front of the one we are in.
Another angle, same stand.
Time to move onto the terracing. Here we see a strange 'stand alone' small covered area in the corner of the ground.
This is a close up of that cover.
Turning the corner we see the stretch of shallow terracing behind the goal, covered at the rear.
Here we look across the roofed part.
Still roughly in the corner we glance back down the main stand side.
Moving along behind the goal we see the main stand.
And the seats down the other side.
Just past the goal we get another peek at the small stand.
And right across the pitch down to the being built seats at the other end.
Onto the corner now, where there is a tea bar.
As well as a toilet block.
Now we're starting to move along the seating which runs the full length of the pitch.
Hard standing in front, though I'd guess this is a 'void area' on matchdays.
Nice seating, but not ideal, with plenty of pillar supports to bostruct your sightlines.
To be honest I can't really imagine the need for a specific 'family area', but there you go.
Some seats missing for the scaffolding from the telly gantry.
Here we look at the stand under construction, as we stand behind the old dugouts.
Another look at the older main stand, across the pitch.
We're almost at the soon to be completed seating behind the goal.
But not before we look back along the 'narrow' side.
And from the pitch from the 'flagless' corner flag.
The front corner of the new stand appears to have a ramp, and will be for wheelchairs I presume.
From in front of it we look down the side.
Before looking up at the new seats.
Behind the goal we look to the old stand, I really should have lowered the camera a bit more!
In case you want to see it again I take a few steps to our left.
Back to the newest stand, we look across the rest of it.
Now it's time to carefully climb up to back of it, where there's nothing at the back yet!
From up here we look first to our right.
Then all the way down the pitch.
And lastly over to the old stand side.
Down at the front once more, and heading toward the corner where we began. note the brick building ahead, which is the one that has the historical hoardings on it.
Back out side now, a last look at the new stand, with what appears to be a new club shop outside, in the car park.
So it's farewell to Farnborough, despite this sign welcoming us!
Wednesday, 24 February 2010
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