The Valley Stadium

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The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Thu Mar 31, 2011 10:41 am

I see that a few of you have been on the Conference North forum, discussing possible ground improvements. I can never log onto that forum and in any case, it sounds like a topic that deserves it’s own thread on here!

So what do you know!? I’m more than a little curious!

I also see from last weeks advertiser that Mr. Swan isn’t ruling out possible ground relocation. Any thoughts on leaving the Valley for good?
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Redditchbluenose86 on Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:30 pm

It would be good to have a brand new ground else where, facilities-wise.
But the current location of The Valley is perfect - Heart of the town, spitting distance from train station, and stumbling distance from pubs.
IF we were to move to Washford Park for example, we'd have a lot more space to work with (3g pitches, car park etc.).

Cedar Road & Alotment end will be revamped/replaced by new stands.
From what Mark said - A 3g pitch/Astro Turf will be put in place where the temp stand is.
Alotment End will have a large function room & executive boxes, and once in place this will allow us to level the current Main Stand.

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Bob Marley on Thu Mar 31, 2011 1:42 pm

The advise we gave during the negotiations was to remain at The Valley, if possible.

I understand completely what Andy is saying as the Valley is restricted in terms of space and future development..however, we felt that with the history, the current fan base still being mostly 'old Redditch' it was better to develop our home and try to utilise the locality of the current site in terms of transportation and amenties (bus/train/pubs/restaurants) all less than 1 mile away.

A move to the proposed greenfield site in Washford could go one way or the other....it depends on each persons point of view.
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Thu Mar 31, 2011 2:39 pm

Where is this greenfield site in Washford? I’m guessing the pitches close to the Washford Mill? Isn’t this protected park land?

That wouldn’t be the worst location. These days, most new football grounds tend to get fobbed off and stuck at the arse end of an industrial estate at the far end of town = no nearby residential areas, no nearby public transport, no nearby pubs, no nearby anything! Totally car dependant!! For Redditch, as an example, I’d guess this would be probably be somewhere between North Moons Moat and the A435?

Washford does seem like an acceptable location….still within the town, connected to the main bus route, nearby pubs, limited residences near by. But, that area of town does flood heavily!!

If we were to move ground, I do think that moving into the ‘new town’ is the way to go. It’s the fans here that we need to target the most and hope will jump on board. This is where the untapped potential is. I’d suggest that there are a huge number of footy fans in this half of Redditch who couldn’t even pinpoint where the Valley is on a map….even though it is right in the town centre….and that is a problem.

Despite it’s limitations and restrictions, I love the idea of a redeveloped Valley Stadium in our traditional town centre location and would lean this way. But a brand new, spacious development in a sensible location within the town is a very close, photo finish ,second place for me. I’d honestly rather see zero development at the Valley Stadium than an out of town new build!
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  rawlings09 on Thu Mar 31, 2011 3:28 pm

SIGNPOSTS!
That's what we need, everywhere, leading people to the Valley!

From the trainstation... a sign with a football on it, or "Redditch United" on it, from the Bus Station... same thing.

Roads going towards the ground... same thing.

When we went to the Solihull Moors game on new years, there were signs. Also at Stafford too!

Point people in the right direction!

Or maybe footsteps going from the trainstation to the club or anything to draw people's general direction to Redditch United.

As it stands we have one small sign, and one bigger on that can only be seen when you have to turn left in to The Valley.

Keep The Valley and its history! Very Happy Dance Oh yeah
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Redditchbluenose86 on Thu Mar 31, 2011 3:43 pm

I raised the sign post idea to Ken sometime last season during a TRUST meeting. Apparently it's stupidly expensive to have signs put in place (permanent ones anyway).

However, sandwich board type signs?? Dotted around various round abouts, and main roads. I think this would work, but again it depends on charges and permissions.

Or even small cardboard match posters/directions on lamp posts.

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 01, 2011 12:09 am

New signage will be going up soon Cup

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:23 am

This is a mjor issue for me and i would expect be the same for any other supporter who has followed us over many years.So many great memories from the valley,and i am lucky enough to remember the greatest era of the club,the 1970's.Championship/cup winning teams,playing in europe,and playing at the top tier of non league football(alliance premier,now bluesq prem),being the last non league team to beat Wimbledon at plough lane(and being there)i know this is not the valley,but we set off on our journey,and returned to the valley,on so many great away days, so for me adds to the history of our ground.The promotion winning team of 1985,even our relegation days although sad it made our glory days even better because i stuck by them reguardless.Helping Dave Roberts,Tom Beard &John Jenner(then commercial team) stave off liquidation in the mid to late 80's.Unless we were to challenge for a place in the football league then i see no reason to move from the valley.We have enough space to redevelope for what we need,and to include standards for blue sq prem.The valley is in a perfect place,in the old town where it belongs,and has been since football was first played in the town.I would be 100% against a ground move,this is my personal view.Dennis

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  JBS on Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:59 am

From a selfish point of view, being a non driver, a move out of the town centre would make it difficult for me to get there. Being in the town centre the town centre is one bus ride away for the majority of the town, moving out of the centre you are talking about two buses to get there and when at present the buses start to dry up after 5pm it makes it difficult! Being by the train station is also a major plus for away fans, visiting other fans forums it does seem a good selling point for people making the trip here.

In the end though, I think it should come down to where the club wants to be in 5-10 years time? If we are going to playing around our current level then redeveloping the Valley is fine, if the Club is seriously and realisticly aiming for the Football League (which there seemed to be a lot of talk of around the ground during the first game after Chris took over) is it worth spening a fortune on the Valley only to have to move in 10 years time anyway?

Would be gutted to leave the Valley though, even if it was for the best, after going for last 20 or so years.

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Guest on Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:40 am

Lets remember the capacity is currently 5000, With the addition of proper seated stands maybe more.
Now I am not being negative but will we reach 5000 any time soon? until we get that figure and regular then I don't see a need for moving, New town (as it suggests) consists Mainly of second generation brummies who came in the 70's and 80's and follow there parents Teams that are mainly Birmingham City, Villa and Wolves and this is why most Redditch Fans have always been from the older parts of Redditch, with this in mind moving would not encourage new fans any more than a refurbished Valley could IMO.
However If lets say Redditch United Fc can't gain certain permissions for certain improvements that are integral to the future success of Redditch United Fc but moving would then even I would be Happy to do so even if very sad(for 18 years I woke up every morning and could see the valley at the top of the fields).
The History is very important but more so if Redditch United Fc are still going in a 120 years Time, Better that than just having History and Memories I think.
Ultimately though I feel Chris is just leaving all options open and discounting none, which to me sounds like good business practice. Im sure he will do what he thinks is best for our future as after all it is a business. Fight

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Fri Apr 01, 2011 2:06 pm

I think we need to forget and move on with regards to the old town vs. new town mentality. We are called Redditch United! Yes, we were invaded by brummies. But we now have a couple of generations of kids that have never lived in Birmingham and have no affinity to the city. There are now thousands upon thousands in the new town area that are Redditch born and bred. Yes their parents will influence them, but so can the club by getting them interested from a young age. And lets not forget that half of football fans across the whole of the town “support” Manchester United and Liverpool. We can’t use the ‘new town’ argument on them. The key factor for me is making the club accessible.

I certainly don’t think it has anything to with capacity. The footprint at the Valley is probably large enough to build a 10,000 + capacity stadium. It’s about facilities. This seems to be the main focus; investing in facilities that bring in revenue. A new site at Washford would surely be more practical for this. E.g. I can’t see how we could fit a new 3g pitch at the Batchley end?

Parking is also a potential issue at the Valley Stadium. Yes, we have a town centre location with public transport near by. But not everyone is willing to use the bus. People are highly dependant on their own cars. Others can be quite lazy. Having plentiful parking facilities nearby makes a ground more convenient and accessible. No parking at a town centre ground makes the visit a chore, thus less likely.

I drove past Washford today….as thousands of others do every single week. A new development there advertises itself. Potentially, every time somebody drives past, they will be reminded that there is a Redditch United FC and that there are associated facilities. A billboard adjacent to the main road could advertise the next game, the 3g pitch, the function room for hire etc. That’s free advertising seen by thousands every single week, advertising that would cost hundreds of pounds a week to put in the local rags. All the signs in the world can not mask the problem that the Valley Stadium is hidden away from the world. Out of sight, out of mind.

If we left the Valley, I’d be sad. God knows how many hundreds of Saturday afternoons I’ve spent down there. But staying for sentimental reasons and 'old town pride', over practical business considerations and common sense is wrong.

Evidently, many of you are better informed than I. From what I’ve heard and from what I have read,
it all depends on how much Mr. Swan is willing to invest, what his hopes and ambitions for the club are, how cooperative the council are etc. When the decision is made, it will be made on business considerations and not sentimentality to our past. For that reason, I’d hazard a guess that Mr. Swan would prefer a move and there is a chance it will happen.
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Redditchbluenose86 on Fri Apr 01, 2011 2:49 pm

On the subject of 'New town' mentality and 2nd Generation Brummies etc.

I'm a second generation Brummie with a bit of yam yam thrown in for good measure.
My old man moved here early 80's from West Heath, after marrying my old dear who is from Tipton.

I was born and bread here in Redditch (2nd person born at the Alex, and 1st C-Section Cool ). I was brought up as a Blues fan, we had season tickets for several years on end (until it started getting too expensive for my old man to fork out for his, mine, and my brother's season tickets). When I was old enough to start full time work, I carried on following Blues home and away.

Now where do you find me every week? - Watching Redditch!
I even turned down a FREE Blues ticket the other week, so I could watch Reds Vs Workington instead.
Once I caught my first few games at the Reds, I also caught the non-league bug. Although I still love Blues, top-flight football is pretty much dead to me now along with it's atmosphere.

I was a complete die-hard with Blues until I 'stumbled' across the Reds, and haven't looked back since.
So if that can happen to me, I'm sure it could happen to a fair few people.
OK not everyone will be the same, as different people seek different ingredients in football. Some go for big name players, big crowds and bigger grounds, where mine are terraces, tin pot grounds, and the sense of involvement you get following a club at this level Laughing

I think something new in that area would spark alot of fresh interest. Locals have nothing to do in that area.

If we were to move to Washford Park, then maybe the council could look into a shuttle bus that runs through set points in the old town to the new ground, and back again after the game at a certain time.

I'm completely on the fence with this one. I'd happily move, and I'm more than happy to stay at the Valley Stadium for the reasons mentioned in my earlier post.
Maybe the shuttle bus could be looked into during next season (depending on how things go) to run through the 'New Town' areas after we've advertised it in advance?

P.S None of the above is a rant Laughing (just read it through and worried incase people take it the wrong way).

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  rawlings09 on Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:10 pm

I've not been part of the valley long enough to "be part of the furniture" and understand sentimental value, however, many people might.

I agree wih Del Boy on the fact that if people see a new ground being built, it'll get people talking. When the evesham ground was being built, it turned my head everytime we drove past it! And the fact that you can't see the valley no matter which way you drive on the bromsgrove road doesn't help much!

Maybe it's for the best? part of the "New Regime"... a new ground would eliminate the "redditch is a shithole" excuse.

As long as Redditch United live on, we could play anywhere Dance
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Guest on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:54 am

I will be at the Valley from 9.15am on If anyone wants to come down and help with the jobs that need doing before tuesday's game, bit of painting and pulling weeds etc.

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  JBS on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:11 am

del boy wrote:Parking is also a potential issue at the Valley Stadium. Yes, we have a town centre location with public transport near by. But not everyone is willing to use the bus. People are highly dependant on their own cars. Others can be quite lazy. Having plentiful parking facilities nearby makes a ground more convenient and accessible. No parking at a town centre ground makes the visit a chore, thus less likely.

I've never understood the parking issue when its been mentioned over the years, granted there not ours but there are four multi-story carparks each between a 2-10 minute walk away from the ground, most clubs would love to have that on there doorstep!

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:27 pm

Fair point. I was thinking more about the potential to accommodate bigger crowds in the future, rather than current or recent attendances, for which the current setup that we have is more than adequate.

On a Saturday afternoon, the multi-storey car parks are operating at close to full capacity. On a sunny Saturday afternoon, cars are queuing up on the ring road to find a space to park. If potential shoppers were denied a parking space by football fans, I’m sure the Kingfisher Shopping Centre would soon get upset!

Plus you have to pay to park there for 2-3 hours. Onsite stadium parking should be free! And a 2-10 minute walk away might be ok for yourself and I, but a 10 minute walk for someone else is a potential burden.

Ease, convenience and accessibility.



Also, I forgot to write this in my last post. Lets not forget, the Valley Stadium has decades of history. Throughout the most recent 20-30 year history there is consistent, factual and indisputable evidence of p*ss poor attendances, in good times and in bad. That doesn’t exactly demonstrate any kind of advantage of having a town centre location!
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  alottmentender on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:33 pm

why should onsite parking be free at the vally?,went to hinckley last week and they charge£2 to park
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  Leethall on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:37 pm

alottmentender wrote:why should onsite parking be free at the vally?,went to hinckley last week and they charge£2 to park

I hate paying for parking and think it should be free. There is no way I am paying £1 to park behind the Allotment end with the type of shooting I see every week. Otherwise Gavin from Autoglass is going to be out every week Very Happy
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  alottmentender on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:39 pm

from what i see you put on here you dont go every week anyway but if ur young you can park further away and walk
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Sat Apr 02, 2011 12:58 pm

alottmentender wrote:why should onsite parking be free at the vally?,went to hinckley last week and they charge£2 to park


Because football clubs have forgotten that they should run themselves like any other business and not take advantage of customer loyalty. They arrogantly charge their customers for 'the privilege' of providing them with custom.

Big shops, supermarkets, retail parks all offer free parking up front, so long as it's not abused.

Would you pay to go shopping in Tesco? Would you pay to find a parking space at McDonalds? No. You wouldn't bother. Would you be happy to pay for a parking space that is a 10 minute walk away?

Free, accessible, convenient parking is a necessity.
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  alottmentender on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:13 pm

think you will find the retail outlets you mention charge you for the food and goods that you buy.the outlet shops only let you park free while you are shopping there and then you cant stay to long doing that .
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  adiy price on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:18 pm

i hate to admit it but i sometimes shop at asda in bromsgrove wanker and i have to pay for it because its close to town. the tight gits in redditch dont mind a 5 min walk into town if they aint gotta pay, just drive along britten street any day and its packed
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  del boy on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:21 pm

alottmentender wrote:think you will find the retail outlets you mention charge you for the food and goods that you buy.the outlet shops only let you park free while you are shopping there and then you cant stay to long doing that .

Your being pedantic and missing the point
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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  mattim on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:32 pm

Some good points raised so far. I am a long term fan like Toffeeman and as such have a sentimental attachment to the Valley. However that does not prevent me from seeing advantages in a move, if indeed this is on the cards.

First of all I think the Valley could be made into a decent ground with the right investment. My two big reservations concern parking and the standard of the pitch.

Firstly, parking. JBS rightly mentioned the proximity of the multi storey car parks but I don't see these as a viable solution. Certainly no one I know has ever used these when attending a match and I think that if we are to achieve the success we all want, with the resulting (hopefully) increases in attendances then this could become a real issue particularly with local residents. Imagine the chaos if we got a crowd of 1000 plus then imagine that every home game. Pipe dreams at the moment I know but it could happen one day. Moving could help solve this problem

Secondly, and I speak from bitter experience of many hours spent on it, is the state of the pitch. Again, to achieve what we want to achieve in terms of status I think we need to go forward with a much better standard of playing surface than we have. Again, a move could solve this problem.

If I could be assured that these difficulties can be overcome by staying at the Valley I would be delighted but at the same time I have an open mind on the subject and at the end of the day it is what is best for the future of the club that counts, and sentimentality doesn't really come into it.

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Re: The Valley Stadium

Post  adiy price on Sat Apr 02, 2011 1:38 pm

when ever i've been to watch the blues wanker i either catch the train and walk from the bull ring or park in the bull ring and walk. the point im making is people will find somewere to park and walk if they have to
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