Without doubt it's true to
say that Stoke City do have 'a certain element' amongst our support - what
shouldn't be forgotten however is that despite their numbers they are
still in the minority and the vast majority of Stoke fans and indeed
Potteries people in general are warm and welcoming to visitors - believe
me as an 'outsider' myself I know.
Stoke's ground unfortunately doesn't lend itself to an 'old fashioned'
away day - built on the site of a former massive colliery that slowly but
surely is being turned into a modern style industrial and residential
housing estate, the site however currently lacks the
traditional facilities that surrounded the old Vic.
Opportunities for a pint close to the ground for visiting supporters ( and
indeed for home fans ) are unfortunately limited -
The Harvester 'pub'
which also serves meals and the nearby Power League are often recommended
as the best choices, for me they're not 'real 'pubs or bars and to be
honest I feel if they're your choice
for a pre match pint you'd be just as well getting a beer from inside the ground.
Having said that they do provide
a chance to mix with Stoke supporters in usually safe surroundings, whilst
still having something of a matchday atmosphere - though by their nature
the atmosphere isn't one of a back street pub.
Stoke town centre is not recommended for visiting supporters - especially
groups of lads.
If you've travelled by train and looking for a pint the best two options
are probably the Roebuck and the Fawn & Firkin pub, turn right out the
station and you'll see them at the cross roads before you go under the
railway bridge to your right, to get to the ground after a beer or two ,taxis are available at the station or get them to
come to the pub.
A bus service ( no singles ) does exist and departs from
outside St Peters Church, Stoke town centre less than 10 minutes walk from
Come out of the station, turn right to the traffic lights, then right
under the railway bridge and carry on over the A500 Dual Carriageway,
follow the road round to the left , St Peters Church is 200 yards on the
However, wandering around looking for a pub in Stoke town centre is not
recommended for away fans. And it should be noted the buses to the ground
depart from opposite one of Stoke's known pubs, with others in close
Without doubt there remains both individually and collectively elements
that see Stoke centre as their own and once under the railway bridge it's
difficult to think of a town centre pub I'd be happy to recommend to a visiting
supporter who wasn't in the company of a Stoke supporter.
Invariably whilst one or two visitors might drink safely and be
inevitably what starts as a recommendation for one or two can lead to
large groups of visiting supporters turning up with a totally different
That's not a challenge to visiting supporters or a judgement of those
Stoke supports that drink in town - I did so myself for years when the
club was based at the Vic, and still
do so still from time to time -
it's just telling it as it is ....
If Stoke town centre is on the top of your list perhaps you should ask
yourself why - as a visitor to Stoke-On-Trent there are better and safer
places to drink.
If you're a Stokie then it's
a totally different matter, despite the move to the Britt the atmosphere in Stoke town centre
can still on occasions be a top day out and part of what being Stoke is
Of course each day and game is different.
For those travelling by Car see the map below
Parking around the ground is limited - though spaces are now appearing as
the site develops.
The Club have a large car park ( South Car Park on the Map ) but you'll
pay for the privilege and
tickets need to be bought in advance, it's floodlight and
considered safe, though visitors should note lengthy delays are often
experienced exiting the area after the game.
Many Stoke supporters choose to park in the area around the Michelin site,
where street parking can be found ( taking extreme care to avoid resident only
parking areas/streets ).
The Gardener's Retreat pub
is to be found in this area , as is the nearby Plough, both are usually ok
for limited numbers of away supporters and the Gardeners is children
A string of
coaches/minibuses run from the Gardner's to the ground priced £1, the last one leaves
about 20 minutes before kick-off , walking from this area to the ground takes about 15-20
minutes ,just follow the crocodile of supporters - the walk to and from
this area is usually considered safe for individual away supporters.
Those travelling from the
north and using the M6 junction 16 / A500 route should be aware of MAJOR roadwork's on
the A500 as you approach Stoke and may find using junction 15 easier,
it'll add about 4 miles to your journey.