Friday 28 January 2011

Concord Rangers

I was fortunate enough to have an early finish at work, rather than my usual 7.00pm Tuesday evening finish, the night I saw Dulwich Hamlet win at Ryman League Premier Division Concord Rangers, in the Championship Manager Cup, earlier this season. Certainly a ground I'd have been unlikely to go to in the near future if we hadn't been drawn against them.

So where is 'Concord'? It's actually on Canvey Island.

Follow the sign!

No reason to take this really, apart from the fact it's in Essex! ;-)

The way in...

I went round to the left, toward the floodlit ground.

Wrong! How on earth did I miss this sign? Doh!

Along this path, past the clubhouse.

It was a bit dark inside, hence the blurred photos.

Club merchandise on sale behind the bar.

And a club clock on the wall.

In one of the entrances is this smart sign, listing the Club officials.

Also a very professional looking match poster.

The line-ups were also helpfully pinned up.

Club crest in the glass doors.

Now we're at the turnstiles.

Once inside there is a teabar next to it.

In the other direction is another function room, in the main building, with the club name up in the brickwork, not too clear though in the night time dark.

The turnstile is in this corner of the pitch.

We are going to head round the ground clockwise, going this way. Open standing, up to the players' tunnel. A patio area in front of the bar area to the right.

Down the side to our right is the main stand area. We will get there later.

This is the players' tunnel. from the changing rooms. There is a covered terrace beyond it.

The 'tunnel', looking along it from pitch side. Past it, to the right, is a toilet block.

We then reach this cover, directly behind the goal.

Here we see it from the front.

From the back we are looking toward the goal.

And then back over to the main stand side.

Past the terracing is open hard standing, to the corner, with a flat grass lawn behind.

From here we can see one of the two small stands along the far side.

At the corner we see over the pitch, with the main stand opposite.

Along this side it's hard standing all the way along, with two stands set back, either side of the two dugouts.

From this side we look back behind the goal, where we've just come from.

We are approaching the first of the two small stands. On the other side of the perimeter fence to the left is a caravan park.

The stand is one one of those modern identical type ones. functional, but with no beauty.

Here we look at it pitchside.

Moving on, the first of the two brick dugouts is ahead.

This is what they look like.

Behind them is open hard standing, with the tidy, cut grass behind.

A professional touch with a 'warm down' bike by the home dugout!

From the halfway line we look across the pitch, to the main stand.

Past the second dugout we are approaching the next small stand on this side. Identical to the one we've just seen.

Here we look right into it, from the front.

Moving to the middle of it we can glance back along the parts of the ground we've seen.

Here it is, a bit dark, from the front.

And from the side of this small stand we look over to the end we are moving round to next.

Here we see the far covered end, by the pitch perimeter fence.

At the next corner now, looking down the touchline.

Behind the goals it more of the same hard standing & green, with the covered terrace behind the goal.

Not really a terrace, as it's only one small step above the hard standing, but still welcome cover behind the goal. It's not a nice place to watch the game from though. As somewhere beyond this end is some sort of sewage works. This part of the ground is simply the smelliest place I've ever watched football from!

A view, directly behind the goal.

Moving slightly to the left we see the main stand.

Here's the cover from the other side of the fence.

Past the cover it's the familiar open areas again.

No reason for snapping this sign really. I just liked the idea of a barbers being called a 'cutting crew'!

At the next corner now, with some pitch equipment in the corner.

Our last 'corner flag' photograph.

Along the hard standing, with the stand beyond.

From this side we look back at the smelly end.

Almost at the stand now. A strange slightly raised concrete area here. As if they were going to build something, but haven't got round to it.

There's also a small turnstile box here.

Here is the raised concrete area.

Now we've reached the main stand.

We look down it from the back row.

From this stand we see the view across the pitch.

As we move along this stand is clearly much bigger than the ones on the other side.

Here we look at the stand from on the pitch.

Looking over the pitch again, this time directly over the halfway line.

There is a tannoy box in the next part of the stand.

It's also the area for club officials.

Past this is a 'another' stand, tacked onto the main block of it. It is the same as the ones on the other side.

Looking at it from the pitch you can clearly see the difference.

Stepping back a bit here is a full length shot of the main stand.

Back on the spectator side we down the front of te main stand.

At least this Hamlet fan is the correct side of the 'no standing' message!

Almost finished with our circuit. Here we look back at the end where we started.

Just the rest of this hard standing to walk along and we're back at the main turnstiles.

Time to say goodbye to Concord Rangers, with their welcome sign!


Reynard The Fox said...

Great shots as always. Thanks for posting them.


Reynard The Fox

Anonymous said...

Keep up the great work. Always interesting.

Rabbler said...

Many thanks to both of you. It's people like you who encourage me that makes it al lworthwhile, despite the time it takes.

Roseland Ranger said...

For a period of ten years, I used to stay for holidays at the Thorney Bay caravan site adjacent to Thames Road with my wife and children. As soon as I spotted the floodlights were on, I would head over to the fence and watch what was left of the match. Then, once my kids were older and had taken an interest in football, we used to walk round to the proper entrance and pay for my football fix. I've seem some great matches over the years, including a 4-4 with Basildon United, and my own side Charlton Athletic having to dig deep to snatch a 2-2 friendly draw. Gone are the days when Canvey Island FC were top-dogs on the island - now Concord Rangers are on the up. In fact, they are now playing at the same level as Stockport County in the sixth tier. And I now live on Canvey Island - and, yes, it still smells pretty bad depending on the wind.