Wednesday 3 August 2011

Civil Service

Despite being one of the oldest clubs in the country most people haven't even heard of Civil Service. They play in the Southern Amateur League Senior Division Two; which sits outside the official non-league pyramid, affiliated to the Amateur Football Alliance. I saw a game here toward the end of the 2010/11 season, when they had an early kick off midweek fixture against BB Eagles. Technically their 'away' match, but the game was switched to their home ground, in Chiswick. The ground itself is very basic, as the AFA ethos is more geared towards hospitality & fair play, with no real spectator facilities. Civil Service is the exception, as they are one of the few AFA sides with a small stand.

The entrance down the ground is along this driveway.

A former civil service sportsground, it is now called King's House Sports Ground, after the school that owns it.

Here we see the main club house & changing rooms, by the rugby pitch. The football pitches are at the other end of the complex.

Here we are by the football pitches, looking back to the main building, with some training lights in the picture.

This is the corner of the main one, the small stand, with changing rooms behind it, on this side.

The stand, changing rooms behind it, the 'tunnel' in the middle of the benches.

Back at the corner, it is an open pitch, not even roped off.

Moving behind the goal, past the post we see the small stand.

At the next corner we glance all the way down the touchline.

Over the halfway line, to the stand.

Behind us are some of the other numbered pitches.

Down at the other end now, corner flag shot, toward the stand.

Right behind the net.

Brief tour almost over, nearly at the final corner. Note the changing rooms behind the stand. Very basic & small. It's almost as if football is the poor relation to the other sports that are staged here. There is also a small office/hut behind the stand. I peeked in, it was somewhat untidy, I didn't stop tp nose about, as I wasn't sure if I should have been there at all.

There were a few old photos in there, which gave you a tantalising glimpse of the proud history of the club, here is just one of them.

As the sun starts to set we look across the sportsfield, from the stand side.

So that completes our brief tour of this venue, not the easiest thing to so, as it is really a sports field, rather than what we might generally term as a ground. So there now a few extra action shots to make up.

A final look at the stand.

Tuesday 2 August 2011

SC Condor; Hamburg, Germany

SC Condor compete in the Oberliga Hamburg, which is the fifth level of the German pyramid. I have not seen a game here, but visited the ground in November 2010.

As you approach the ground there is this club building, the pitch is beyond it.

A Club noticeboard.

The ground is straight ahead, over this path.

Coming into the ground the pitch is straight ahead.

To the right, as we walk in, is a modern changing room block.

In the other direction, which is the way we will walk round, it is very open. This is not the type of foreign ground I really like, being one without any stands, & with a running track, to keep you a fair way from the action. Set back, on the left, appears to be a beer &/or food area.

There is hard standing behind the track, around the ground, the track perimeter simply railed off. Here we see the back of the dugouts.

By them, as you xan see on the bottom right, are a couple of steps of open terrace.

Here we see the home dugout, from the front, and a better look at the terracing.

Moving on past the dugouts, the steps continue up to the end of the track.

Walking over the track, we have corner flag shot of the snow covered pitch.

Nice personalised corner flags.

From here we look back along the main side.

The same side, but by the pitch rail.

The hard standing crurves round the goal, behind the track.

As always with these multi-sport venues, the goal at this end is a long way away, from beind the barrier.

Moving on we now head to the next bend, toward the next open side, but much narrower than the first one.

Again open hard standing behind the rail, alongside the track.

A low brick wall could 'double up' as some 'bench seating'.

Across the halfway line, toward the club buildings.

As we stroll onwards, the hardstanding widens, as there is a long jump area.

The curve at the far end.

The same brick style paved hard standing, with other pitch areas, to the left, behind this end.

Like the first end we saw, a long way back, behind this goal too.

There is a second pitch here, behind the last corner of the main one.

A couple of park benches at this end, to rest on.

A club board in this corner.

A 'long distance' corner flag shot.

Now back on the main side, from this end of it we can see the steps of terrace actually run all the way down the length of it.

Almost back at the club buildings, with a few benches. While not my type of ground, personally, you can imagine it is quite pleasant on a warmer early or late season matchday.

Don't forget to clean your boots!