New Meadow

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Greenhous Meadow
New Meadow • Oteley Road
New Meadow, Shrewsbury, 25 October 2014.jpg
Full name Greenhous Meadow
Location Oteley Road
Shrewsbury
Shropshire
SY2 6ST
Owner Shrewsbury Town F.C.
Capacity 9,875
10,361 (with temporary seating)
Record attendance 10,210
Field size 110 metres (120 yd) x 75 metres (82 yd)
Surface Grass
Construction
Built 2006–2007
Opened July 2007

The New Meadow, also known as the Greenhous Meadow for sponsorship purposes, is the home ground of English football club Shrewsbury Town.

The stadium is situated on the southern outskirts of Shrewsbury, Shropshire, between the districts of Meole Brace and Sutton Farm, and close to the A5. It was completed in the summer of 2007, in time for the 2007–08 English football season, and was built to replace the Gay Meadow stadium, home of Shrewsbury Town since 1910. It is also a UEFA Category 4 stadium.

The stadium[edit]

Naming[edit]

The stadium had no official name during the clubs first season at their new home, before being christened the "Prostar Stadium" in a four-year deal with the sports kit manufacturer of the same name in July 2008.[1] The club had initially distanced themselves from the unofficial name of "New Meadow", preferring to sever links with the old Gay Meadow ground,[2] however when the naming deal with Prostar ended two years earlier than scheduled, new sponsors Greenhous gave supporters the opportunity to vote for a new stadium name, with "Meadow" added to the shortlist after feedback from fans.[3] Since May 2010, the stadium has officially been known as "Greenhous Meadow".[4]

Design and construction[edit]

Proposals to move to a new stadium site at Oteley Road were first drawn up in the late 1990s,[5] with planning permission granted in September 2003.[6] A covenant protecting the Gay Meadow site for sports use was transferred to Oteley Road in 2004, clearing the way for the sale of the old ground to property developers to finance the building of New Meadow.[7]

New Meadow
North Stand.

The stadium was designed by WDW Partnership architects, with the project awarded to Hall Construction, at a cost of £11.2 million, with a brief to build a 10,000 capacity all-seater stadium, with banqueting facilities for up to 300 people. The project consisted of erecting four stands, including hospitality boxes, function rooms, kitchen, bars, offices and a club shop as well as adjoining community and training pitches, a 670 space car park and access roads. Work was completed for the new stadium to open in time for the beginning of the 2007–08 Football League Two season.[8]

Stands[edit]

Plan of the stadium layout
West Stand

The East and West stands run the length of the pitch; the South and North stands face onto the ends of the pitch. All stands are fully seated and covered; each stand also has its own catering (licensed) and toilets. At present the stands are detached from one another.

  • "Roland Wycherley Stand" - East stand, named after the present chairman; includes the club's hospitality facilities, the changing rooms, club offices and club shop. Blocks 1−7. Capacity 2,741.[9]
  • "Salop Leisure Stand" - South stand, named after a local business sponsor. Blocks 8−12. Capacity 1,955.[9]
  • "Pro-Vision CCTV Stand" - North stand - the away supporters' stand; also has stadium control rool and scoreboard, resulting in fewer seats than the South stand. Blocks 20−24. Capacity 1,796.[9]
  • "Surridge Stand" - West stand, named after the sports kit manufacturer. Blocks 13−19. Capacity 3,317.[9]

Expansion and developments[edit]

After the first nine seasons hosted at New Meadow, the average attendance for first-team league matches stood at 5,612, approximately 57% of capacity (see table below), with no confirmed prospect of stadium expansion in the foreseeable future as of July 2016.

New Meadow with temporary seating, October 2014

In September 2014, Shrewsbury drew Chelsea at home in the fourth round of the League Cup. With the club anticipating a high demand for tickets, C.E.O. Matt Williams proposed that temporary seating could be erected in the corners between the existing stands. In order to maintain segregation between home and away supporters, and to allow access for emergency vehicles, the proposals were later reduced to two temporary stands at the South (home) end of the ground,[10] With match tickets selling out on their first day of general sale, the club confirmed the plans on 13 October 2014, which temporarily raised the capacity of New Meadow to 10,361.[11]

Subsequent developments on the stadium site include 5G 5-a-side and 7-a-side pitches currently operated by Powerleague,[12] and a community centre run by "Shrewsbury Town in the Community" which opened on land behind the South stand in 2016.[13] A memorial garden area to remember fans, staff and players who have died was also relocated near the entrance to the stadium in the same year.[14] Shropshire Football Association are also based at New Meadow, with their county office located in a building at the rear of the South stand.[15]

The food retailer Lidl submitted plans to build a supermarket at the stadium site in May 2016, however this is partly reliant on the local council agreeing to move land earmarked for community use at the North end of the ground to another part of the site.[16]

Transport systems[edit]

With the ground not being centrally located and with only limited car parking on-site, the club operates a matchday travel plan, to encourage spectators to walk, cycle or use organised transport where possible. Shrewsbury railway station is approximately two miles from the stadium.

Notable fixtures[edit]

The first match at the new ground was an 'All-Stars' friendly game as part of Shrewsbury Town's new sponsorship deal with Italian sportswear manufacturer A-Line, who made Shrewsbury's kit for the 2007-08 season. Heading the list of All-Stars players was Gianfranco Zola, with the team being managed by Ron Atkinson. The match took place on Saturday 14 July 2007, and Shrewsbury Town ran out 4−0 winners, Shrewsbury striker Dave Hibbert taking the honour of being the first ever goalscorer at the new ground.[17]

The first competitive match at New Meadow was a League Cup match against Colchester United, of the Championship, then two divisions above Shrewsbury. It took place on Tuesday 14 August 2007, Shrewsbury winning 1−0 thanks to a header from Darran Kempson in extra time.[18] The first league fixture, in League Two, was against Bradford City on Saturday 18 August, with Shrewsbury winning 1−0 from a first half penalty scored by Dave Hibbert.[19]

In November 2007 the England women's national football team played Spain at New Meadow. England won 1–0 with a Karen Carney goal.[20]

On 18 October 2010 it was announced that New Meadow has been selected as part of England's bid to host the UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship in 2013.[21] On 28 January 2011, however, it was ruled Israel will host the Under 21's Finals.

On 27 March 2012, the generator room in the East Stand caught fire which caused the League Two match against Port Vale to be abandoned in the second half with the score 1–0 to Shrewsbury Town.[22] Shrewsbury then won the replayed match 1–0.

Shrewsbury Town went 34 matches unbeaten in all competitions at New Meadow over an 18-month period between 2011 and 2012, under manager Graham Turner. The run was ended by a 1−0 defeat to Scunthorpe United in September 2012.[23]

Record attendances[edit]

First team competitive matches featuring Shrewsbury Town only. As of 10 July 2016.

Position Away Team Date Competition Total Attendance Home Away Notes Ref
1 v Chelsea 28 October 2014 League Cup Round Four 10,210 8,490 1,720 First game at New Meadow with additional temporary seating [1]
2 v Wolves 21 September 2013 League One 9,510 7,917 1,593 [2]
3 v Dagenham and Redbridge 28 April 2012 League Two 9,441 9,294 147 Home supporters also allocated seats in away section [3]
4 v Manchester United 22 February 2016 FA Cup Round Five 9,370 7,807 1,563 [4]
5 v Plymouth Argyle 2 May 2015 League Two 8,963 7,869 1,094 [5][6]
6 v Oxford United 7 May 2011 League Two 8,817 [7]
7 v Torquay United 20 May 2011 League Two play-off semi-final second leg 8,452 [8]
8 v Bury 7 May 2009 League Two play-off semi-final first leg 8,429 [9]
9 v Portsmouth 27 April 2013 League One 8,021 6,401 1,620 [10]
10 v Stockport County 26 December 2007 League Two 7,707 [11]

Average attendances[edit]

Year Attendance
Average Highest
2007−08 [L2] 5,659[24] 7,707 (vs. Stockport County)[25]
2008−09 [L2] 5,657[26] 7,162 (vs. Port Vale))[27]
2009−10 [L2] 5,482[28]
2010−11 [L2] 5,876[29] 8,817 (vs. Oxford United)[30]
2011−12 [L2] 5,770[31] 9,441 (vs. Dagenham & Redbridge)[32]
2012−13 [L1] 5,736[33] 8,021 (vs. Portsmouth)[34]
2013−14 [L1] 5,581[35] 9,510 (vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers)[36]
2014−15 [L2] 5,343[37] 8,963 (vs. Plymouth Argyle)[38]
2015−16 [L1] 5,407[39] 7,019 (vs. Port Vale)[40]

L1 = Football League One, L2 = Football League Two

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Shrewsbury announce stadium name". BBC Sport. 22 July 2008. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  2. ^ "Shrews stadium close to new name". BBC Sport. 17 January 2008. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  3. ^ "Shrewsbury Town fans could resurrect Meadow memories". BBC Sport. 5 May 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  4. ^ "Shrews bring back "Meadow" name for current ground". BBC Sport. 24 May 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  5. ^ "Spring date for town's new stadium". BBC News. 7 August 2003. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  6. ^ "SA/02/0278/F Erection of a new football stadium, construction of training pitch, community pitch, childrens pitch, 6 no. five-a-side pitches, changing facilities, formation of car parking, taxi rank/bus stop layby, and new access and associated engineering and other works. Oteley Road (Land at) Shrewsbury". Shropshire Council. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  7. ^ "New soccer stadium a step closer". BBC News. 16 November 2004. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  8. ^ "Shrewsbury Town FC" (PDF). Hall Construction. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  9. ^ a b c d "Greenhous Meadow". Shrewsweb. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  10. ^ "Town could go up by 500 for Chelsea clash". Shropshire Star. 4 October 2014. Retrieved 6 October 2014. 
  11. ^ "Extra Seating for Chelsea Game". Shrewsweb. 13 October 2014. Retrieved 13 October 2014. 
  12. ^ "Welcome to Lucozade Powerleague Shrewsbury". Powerleague. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  13. ^ "Work Begins On Community Hub". Shrewsweb. 8 January 2016. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  14. ^ "Memorial Garden". Shrewsweb. 25 May 2016. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  15. ^ "Find us Shropshire FA". Shropshire FA. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  16. ^ "Town hoping to improve community facilities". Shrewsweb. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  17. ^ "Shrewsbury 4-0 A-Line All-Stars". BBC Sport. 16 July 2007. Retrieved 7 May 2016. 
  18. ^ "Shrewsbury 1-0 Colchester (aet)". BBC Sport. 7 August 2007. Retrieved 7 May 2016. 
  19. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 1-0 Bradford City". BBC Sport. 18 August 2007. Retrieved 7 May 2016. 
  20. ^ Carney angles in for narrow win
  21. ^ Shrewsbury stadium selected in England's bid for Euro Under-21 finals
  22. ^ Shrewsbury A-A Port Vale: Stadium Fire in East Stand
  23. ^ "Shrewsbury 0-1 Scunthorpe". BBC Sport. 15 September 2012. Retrieved 10 July 2016. 
  24. ^ "League Two Attendances 2007−08". Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  25. ^ "Shrewsbury 3-1 Stockport". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  26. ^ "League Two Attendances 2008−09". Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  27. ^ "Shrewsbury 1-2 Port Vale". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  28. ^ "League Two 2009/2010". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  29. ^ "League Two 2010/2011". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  30. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 3-0 Oxford United". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  31. ^ "League Two 2011/2012". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  32. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 1-0 Dagenham & Redbridge". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  33. ^ "League One 2012/2013". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  34. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 3-2 Portsmouth". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  35. ^ "League One 2013/2014". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  36. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 0-1 Wolves". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  37. ^ "League Two 2014/2015". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  38. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 0-2 Plymouth Argyle". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 March 2016. 
  39. ^ "League One 2015/2016 Attendance Home matches". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 1 May 2016. 
  40. ^ "Shrewsbury Town 1-1 Port Vale". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°41′19″N 2°44′58″W / 52.68863°N 2.74933°W / 52.68863; -2.74933