Newcastle’s reserve side will take on Richard Money’s Cambridge United in a friendly at the Abbey Stadium on Tuesday (7.30pm kick-off).
The match has been arranged as part of the club’s centenary celebrations.
What's The Abbey Stadium Like?
The Main Stand on one side is a covered two-tiered all seated stand, part of which is used as a Family enclosure. This stand has a number of supporting pillars. Opposite is the Habbin Stand, which is for home supporters and is mostly covered. Again there are a number of supporting pillars. At one end of the ground is the Marstons Smooth South Stand, which was opened in 2002. This good sized covered single tiered, all seated stand, replaced a former open terrace. The seating area is raised in this stand, meaning that supporters enter the stand via a small flight of stairs. The North Terrace at the other end of the ground is covered. However, it only runs for about half the width of the pitch, with one side ending in line with the eighteen yard box. Thus there is a large open area at one corner of the ground, that is unused for spectators but houses the supporters club.
What Is It Like For Away Supporters?
Away fans are housed in the Marstons Smooth South Stand at one end of the ground, where up to 1,600 supporters can be seated. This relatively new covered, all seated stand has good facilities. For some larger games then the South part of the Habbin terrace can also be made available. This covered terrace can accommodate almost 1,000 supporters. The entrance to the away section is reached by walking along a path through what appears to be a common field that is used from time to time to graze cows (well judging from the number of cow pats!). Not much fun at the best times and especially when it is a bit more difficult to see for those night games! Adam Hodson a visiting Stockport County fan informs me; 'The away end is a nice modern stand with good views of the playing action. The refreshments on offer included the legendary bacon butties, which have apparently returned after an absence, due to demand from fans'. Adrian Corbett a visiting Woking supporters adds; 'The Steak and Ale Pie sold in the ground was the best I've had at a match for a very long time!' Whilst Graham Young tells me; 'On the whole Cambridge is a good day out as it is generally relaxed and friendly'.
Where To Drink?
There is a supporters club at the ground itself, that normally allows in away supporters, except for high profile games. The club charges a £1.50 entrance fee and also serves food. However as you would expect on matchdays it gets rather busy and sometimes has to turn away fans because it is full. With a number of pubs in the local area having closed down, there is little choice for away fans in the way of a pre-match pint. Along Newmarket Road going to towards the city centre is the Wrestlers pub, which also offers Thai food. Otherwise it may be in an idea to drink in the centre of Cambridge before the game or enroute.
How To Get There And Where To Park
From the North:Take the A1 and A14 to Cambridge, heading towards Newmarket. Turn off onto the B1047 sign posted for Cambridge Airport. At the top of the slip road turn right towards Fen Ditton. Go through Fen Ditton until you reach a T Junction, where at the traffic lights you turn right into Newmarket Road. Go straight across the roundabout (there is a McDonalds on one corner) and you will come to Abbey Stadium on your left hand side.
From the South:Take the M11 to Junction 14 and then join the A14 towards Newmarket. Turn off onto the B1047 sign posted for Cambridge Airport. Then as North.
From the West:Take the A428 to Cambridge, then join the A14, heading towards Newmarket. Turn off onto the B1047 sign posted for Cambridge Airport. Then as North.
There is no parking available for away fans at the ground. There is some parking to be had on the streets surrounding the stadium. Otherwise some off road car parking is available behind the ground. To reach this, continue past the ground entrance for another 400 yards and turn left at the traffic lights into Coldhams Lane. Continue for about 300 yards, crossing a small roundabout and over a railway bridge, The car park entrance is on the left about 50 yards beyond the bridge. Thanks to Chris Armstrong for providing the directions and car parking details.
Cambridge railway station is over two miles away, so best to catch a taxi (about £9). If you decide to walk to the ground, then it is a fair old stroll, and a mazey route, but should only take 30 minutes at a good pace. Leave the station and take the first right hand turn into Tenison Avenue. Just beyond the traffic lights turn right into St. Barnabas Road. Follow this road along over the traffic lights and into Gywdir Road. Go through the traffic barrier and take the first left turn into Norfolk street. Then take the first right turn just past the newsagents into St. Matthews Street, pass the church and take the 4th right into New Street. Follow all the way along until you reach Coldhams Lane. Head left here and then take the first right onto Newmarket Road, continue along this road for the ground. Thanks to 'Main Stand Matt' for providing the directions.
Richard Green a visiting Macclesfield Town fan adds; 'There are frequent buses that run to the Abbey stadium before and after the game. I got on the C3, although the bus drivers in Cambridge directed me to several different numbered buses before a more 'down-to-earth' Cambridge fan (who was actually a bus driver), correctly directed me to the C3 bus. The bus journey takes 10-15 minutes'. The fare is £2.50 return.
Source: Newcastle United Mad