Priory Lane

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Priory Lane
Main Stand
Full name Priory Lane Stadium
Location Priory Lane,
Eastbourne,
East Sussex,
BN23 7QH
Owner Langney Sports Club
Capacity 4,134
Field size 110 × 75 yards
Construction
Built 1988
Opened 1988
Tenants
Eastbourne Borough F.C.
Peter Fountain Stand
River End Stand
Scoreboard
Plan of Priory Lane

Priory Lane is an association football stadium in Eastbourne, East Sussex and is the home of Eastbourne Borough, who play in the Conference South League. Eastbourne Borough have used this stadium since moving from the playing fields at Princes Park in 1983.[1]

History[edit]

Building commenced in 1983 when the club was playing as Langney Sports, who joined the Sussex County Football League, leased a playing field and built a garage to store equipment in. Over the years the ground has seen a lot of development. Involving piping a tunnel and installing their own pumping station for drainage. The Peter Fountain stand was first to be built in 1989, named after the man who supplied the labour. Which was later extended in the early 1990s as Langney Sports were working their way up in the Sussex County League.

There was also a hump where spectators had excellent views of the pitch before the Mick Green stand was built in 1995 ready for the 1995-96 season and is in memory of the club captain who was killed in a building accident in 1994. The Mick Green stand holds the players dressing rooms and a tea bar on the ground level and hospitality suites upstairs.

Part of the stadium complex includes the Langney Sports Club, which is open to non members on selected match days, an indoor bowls centre, archery and tennis courts.

In 2007 the local council nearly made Eastbourne Borough lose its stadium after attempting to increase the rent from £3,000 to £17,000. The supporters club stepping in a collected over 1,000 signatures in a petition.[2] In June 2009, the FA decided that Priory Lane stadium is a Grade A Stadium but advised that the capacity to be reduced to 4,134. The criteria for a Grade A stadium is to have a capacity of 4,000 with at least 500 seats although to be expanded to 5,000 spectators with 1,000 seats by the end of their first season in League Two.

The record attendance is 3,770 against Oxford United in the FA Challenge Cup 1st Round on 5 September 2005.[3]

The first live televised game was on 12 October 2008 in a league game against Stevenage Borough.[4]

Stands[edit]

  • Main Stand has a seating area for 542 spectators, there is a Directors' Suite and Main Sponsor's Executive Suite. Also an Announcer's Box and Press area is also situated in this stand. There is also a family area and disabled access to this stand.
  • The Mick Green Stand houses the dressing rooms, a tea bar (with seating inside), and provides covered terracing at the Priory Road end of the ground. The upper floor has four Executive Suites, in addition to the exclusive ‘Legends Lounge', with windows fronting on to the pitch.
  • Peter Fountain Stand is a covered terrace and houses a tea bar. This is where the home fans (known as Garry Wilsons Army) chant from.
  • River End Stand is a covered terrace but has no amenities. This is where away fans are designated on segregation match days.

There is a car park for 400 vehicles, mainly behind the River End stand with a small car park in front of the clubhouse.

Segregation[edit]

Borough never segregated League games before their promotion to the Conference. However in the 2008/09 season after a home game against Mansfield Town, some games with bigger clubs have been segregated, with the away fans using the River End stand.[5]

Other uses[edit]

In 2006 the stadium was chosen by The Football Association to stage all three of England’s fixtures in the Non League Home Nations Tournament.[6] The final of the Sussex Senior Challenge Cup was staged here between 2000-2010.[7]

Future Developments[edit]

Eastbourne Borough released plans to expand Priory Lane in December 2011. The main focus of the development will be the Peter Fountain (North) Stand, which will include installing a number of Executive Boxes, adding new Changing Rooms and a players tunnel. The River End (East) Stand is due to have 16 tiers of terracing to improve the atmosphere and the Main (South) Stand is planned to be extended to provide additional seating with youth team changing rooms built along the back of the stand facing a new pitch for the youth team.[8]

Transport[edit]

The ground is located over a mile away from Pevensey & Westham railway station, which lies on the East Coastway Line between Hastings and Eastbourne, and Eastbourne railway station which is over 2 miles away. Both are served by Southern Railway. Parking at the stadium is limited also the residential streets near the stadium also have limited parking, there is a bus service served from Eastbourne town centre.

Attendance[edit]

Average attendance since the 2001-2002 season:[9][10][11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Borough's rise is the stuff of dreams". Steve Hollis (The Argus). 2008-05-14. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  2. ^ "Petition over football club rent". BBC Southern Counties. 2007-01-10. Retrieved 2009-04-15. 
  3. ^ "Club History". Eastbourne Borough F.C. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  4. ^ "Osborne makes Borough debut in front of TV cameras". Steve Hollis (The Argus). 2008-10-12. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  5. ^ "Borough won't segregate fans despite trouble". The Argus. 2009-02-02. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  6. ^ "England to host Four Nations cup". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Company). 2006-03-09. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  7. ^ "Sussex FA reject the Amex as venue for cup final". Andy Naylor (The Argus). 2011-01-14. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  8. ^ "Multi-million development plans for Boro". Eastbourne Herald. 2011-12-24. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  9. ^ "European Football Statistics". Thomas Mapfumo (European Football Statistics). Retrieved 2011-08-03. 
  10. ^ "Tony Kempster". Tony Kempster. Retrieved 2011-08-03. 
  11. ^ "Mike Avery". Mike Avery. Retrieved 2011-08-03. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 50°48′15.05″N 0°19′14.76″E / 50.8041806°N 0.3207667°E / 50.8041806; 0.3207667