AJ Bell Stadium
|AJ Bell Stadium|
AJ Bell Stadium
|Full name||AJ Bell Stadium|
|Former names||Salford City Stadium|
1 Stadium Way,
|Owner||Peel Group and Salford City Council|
|Construction cost||£26 million|
|Main contractors||Buckingham Group|
|Executive suites||12 20-person hospitality boxes and 1 banqueting suite (up to 750)|
|Record attendance||9,783 (Sale Sharks v London Wasps) 4th May 2013|
|Field dimensions||122m x 86m|
|Salford Red Devils (2012–)
Sale Sharks (2012-)
Manchester United FC Reserves (2013–)
AJ Bell Stadium (formerly known as Salford City Stadium  ) is a rugby stadium in Barton-upon-Irwell, Eccles, Salford, England. It was built to replace Salford City Reds (now Red Devils) rugby league club's Willows ground for the start of the 2012 season. Sale Sharks rugby union club have also played at the stadium since the start of their 2012–13 season.
Development and Financing
In 2005, Salford City Council approved plans for the Reds to move from the Willows to the brownfield site at Barton.
Salford City Council formed a joint venture company with Peel Group to develop and deliver the £16 million stadium, which is part of the a £26 million development close to the Manchester Ship Canal and the M60 motorway.
Planning permission was granted in March 2010 for a 15,000-capacity stadium.
In 2013, Peel Group and Salford City Council each lent £600,000 in emergency funding to the stadium. The council is still owed £20m for building the stadium, and is already owed £1.5m by the Salford City Reds who play at the stadium.
AJ Bell Stadium
On 13 September 2013, it was announced that investment platform AJ Bell had secured a nine-year stadium naming rights partnership with Sale Sharks Rugby Club. The deal will see Salford City Stadium re-branded and re-named AJ Bell Stadium. AJ Bell are also sponsors of Salford Red Devils.
Initially, the stadium can accommodate a 12,000 crowd, but could be extended to hold up to 20,000 spectators. The stadium has areas designated for standing supporters. This partial-standing design is similar to the Halliwell Jones Stadium, home of Warrington Wolves.
There are four stands:
- West Stand (main stand) including changing rooms, media centre, hospitality boxes, banqueting suite; capacity 4,500
- North Stand (BMI Healthcare) - all-standing, usually the away end; capacity 2,500
- East Stand - capacity 2,500; all seating
- South Stand (Wellsprings Stand) - all-standing, home to hardcore Reds fans; identical to the North Stand, capacity 2,500
The seats in the West and East Stands are red (for Salford) and blue (for Sale).
The development also includes offices, player facilities, concessions, community resources and two community outdoor sport pitches, a gym and the club shop which is shared by both the Red Devils and the Sharks.
Sale Sharks' first game at the stadium was a friendly on 24 August 2012 against Leinster Rugby, which ended 10-10. Their first competitive game was against Saracens on 8 September 2012. The score was Sale 16-23 Saracens and the attendance was 7,451.
|League||Fixtures||Average Attendance||Highest||Lowest||League||Fixtures||Average Attendance||Highest||Lowest|
|2012 Super League||12[a]||5,442||6,891||2,380||2012–13 Premiership||11||7,291||9,783||5,307|
|2013 Super League||13||3,125||5,383||1,989||2013–14 Premiership||4||6,030||6,876||5,372|
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- "Salford City Stadium renamed as AJ Bell Stadium". www.salfordcitystadium.com. 13 September 2013. Retrieved 17 September 2013.
- "AJ Bell Stadium: Salford City Stadium renamed in sponsor deal". BBC Sport. 13 September 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
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- "The 2013 Rugby League World Cup Match Report for Scotland vs USA". RLIF. 7 November 2013. Retrieved 10 November 2013.
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- Salford City Stadium official website
- Salford City Reds get new Barton stadium go-ahead BBC Sport, 19 August 2010
- 2012 - The Future of History Salford City Reds
|Salford Red Devils