Shrewsbury Town v Barnet
Emirates FA Cup 1st Round
Saturday 5th November 2016
Stadium: Greenhous Meadow, Oteley Road, Shrewsbury, SY2 6ST
Telephone: 0871 811 8800
Club Colours: Blue and Amber
Nickname: The Shrews
Key Personnel: This will be manager Paul Hurst’s first home game in charge of Shrewsbury Town following his move from Grimsby Town. Hurst will be assisted in Shropshire by Chris Doig who has followed him from Blundell Park.
Brief Directions by Road: Onto the trusty M1, veer off onto the M6 and onto junction 10a.
Turn off onto the M54 towards Telford. At the M54 junction 7 the road becomes the A5, signposted North Wales and Shrewsbury.
After about seven miles you will meet a roundabout junction with the A49. Bear left at this roundabout staying on the A5.
At the next roundabout take the third exit onto the Thieves Lane B4380. Over two more roundabouts following the road which becomes Oteley Road.
Follow this road until you reach the ground on your right. The ground is very well signposted from all approaches.
Car Parking: Not easy this one I’m afraid. The stadium car park is by permit only and the club encourages the Park & Bus Ride schemes available from the town centre and surrounding areas.
Look out for them on the way in – £2.50 well spent and hassle free, trust me.
Parking is prohibited in the nearby Retail Park and nearby streets, so to find some street parking you may have to drive a bit further away.
There is a car park at the Meole Brace Bowling Club, which is a short walk away and offers parking at £5 per car.
Directions by Train: Trains from London Euston changing at Crewe and/or Wolverhampton take approximately three hours. The ground is a good 40 minute walk from the station, so a taxi is your best option.
Eating and Drinking Locally: The catering inside the ground is fairly varied and alcohol is also available inside the stadium.
The local pubs (10-20 minutes’ walk away) are The Brooklands Hotel, which also offers parking for visiting fans, and the Charles Darwin. Both of these, rather conveniently, have chippies in close proximities too!
The best of the lot if you are making a day of it is The Prince of Wales Hotel on Bynner Street near the town centre – terrific grub and great range of beers, worth a visit.
Ground Description: The ground is a modern lower league stadium and boasts four very smart and efficient blue seated enclosures.
All four are 18 rows high with executive boxes behind the seats in the main or East Stand. The North, or Pro-Vision CCTV Stand, will be our home for the afternoon; it has room for around 2,000 spectators and overlooked by a very foreboding Police control room!
Admission Prices: Adults £15, Seniors £12, Young Adult (19-21) £12, Under-18 £5, Under-8 FREE
Previous Meetings and Memories: Our last meeting was in October 2011 in League 2 and ended in a 3-2 defeat featuring Bees goals from Ricky Holmes and Mark Marshall.
The Underhill “powercut game” of February 2006 saw a debut goal from Tresor Kandol in a 1-0 Bees win, while an end-to-end 2-2 draw at Gay Meadow in September 2005 included Barnet goals from Nicky Bailey and Louis Soares.
On May 3, 2004 we lost in the play-off semi-finals to the Shrews. After a 2-1 win at Underhill in the first leg, a 1-0 defeat at Gay Meadow sent the game into extra time and penalties, and you all know the rest.
The first game of the 2000/01 Division Three campaign, which ended in relegation, saw a very comprehensive 3-0 Barnet victory over the Shrews, though Lee Harrison was resplendent early on. Scott McGleish, Wayne Purser and Darren Currie were on the scoresheet for the Bees.
Gay Meadow witnessed an extremely rare occurrence in 1998 as the diminutive Billy Manuel scored a goal for Barnet. After the initial shock wave of disbelief from the players subsided, Bill tried desperately to join the faithful band of stunned Bees travellers on the away terrace to celebrate but the fence was nearly three foot high and he was unable to get over it!
Overnight Stay Factor: It is very tempting to stay overnight here especially as Shrewsbury is a very picturesque town. The Monastery and Castle are steeped in English history.
The surrounding countryside is pleasant and there are many splendid inns and hostelries to be found. What better than a morning punt down the river after a hearty full English breakfast with the local delicacy, Shropshire honey-smoked bacon?
Celebrity Watch: Mr Logical Explanation himself Charles Darwin, born 1809, hailed from this part of the world, as does Tony Blair’s mum. Ex MP’s include Benjamin Disraeli and Clive Of India. Regular sightings of Roy (Wizzard) Wood have been reported while the late great actor Pete Postlethwaite plus Frank Bough were both from Shrewsbury.