Heading to Doncaster on Saturday? Here's everything you need to know about an away day at the Keepmoat Stadium...
593 tickets had been sold by the time they went off sale on Thursday afternoon. They will be available on the day from the Doncaster Academy outlet situated just outside the visitor's end, available on the day, priced as follows:
Over 60s £17
Expect the expected on our first Saturday visit to the Keepmoat Stadium. Previous home Belle Vue had well and truly run its course and fair play to Rovers for recognising this and constructing a stadium that has been a catalyst for a bit of success - yes, it is a bit identikit - but has proven to be a wholly progressive step for the club after years of turmoil.
Fear not, although named the Keepmoat, it is not totally surrounded by water taking stewarding to the ultimate extreme, but does boast a lake beside it. We are situated behind the goal in the One Call North Stand which is again exactly as one would expect. The view is good, if a tad distant, with the front few rows being a little open to the elements which hopefully will be on our side, yet it's spacious and well organised.
It will be pretty relaxed in terms of choosing your viewing outlet. Entrance, as with so many stadia of its generation, is at ground level then take your pick in terms of ascent. The concourses are smarter than the average - bags of room, well-kept and no confusing queues. There is a retail park, cinema and bowling alley nearby but again, expect the expected.
Food and Refreshments
Back to the retail park – all of the usual suspects are there along with supermarkets. The food inside the ground on our last visit was more than acceptable with good service provided, ditto the bar. Within the immediate vicinity is The Lakeside which doubles as a steak house but has been absolutely fine and friendly on previous visits. Even closer (at the ground) is the Belle Vue Bar by the West Stand, which welcomes away fans and provides a bite to eat, a decent pint and the opportunity to watch the North London derby pre-match.
If travelling via the town itself, there are plenty of choices. Immediately outside the station is The Railway Hotel which is the same as it ever was to the experienced visitor. Over the main road towards the Frenchgate Centre are the Tut n' Shive and The Plough, both of which are fine, slightly leaning towards the latter. Within the Frenchgate Centre itself is The Mallard, while the nearby Great Northern is fine, Wetherspoons and Walkabout in close proximity, with a few gems if you hit the main centre.
Pretty straightforward by road. The Post Code is DN4 5JW. Take the A1M north and exit at Junction 35 onto the M18 towards Hull. Leave this at Junction 3 onto the A6182 towards Doncaster where you will soon make acquaintance with a retail park to your left. At the next set of traffic lights hang a left onto White Rose Way, where you now find a shopping centre on your right. Soon an industrial estate follows, pass the Tesco part of it and you'll find the Keepmoat. Either Car Park 3 or 4 should be available to away fans but plenty are on hand to provide directions, failing that a number of units on the industrial estates offer facilities. Whichever, a fee is charged.
Train travellers will no doubt know that lots of trains stop at Doncaster and a direct journey from Kings Cross takes under 2 hours. With the ground being out of town it's a fair old stroll, so either a taxi, the rank being on the Frenchgate of the station or a bus are probably the best option. Doncaster Interchange bus station is adjacent and there is a choice of the number 73 at 10 and 40 minutes past the hour or the at 22 and 55. The journey is around 15 minutes, if you fancy a slightly longer magical mystery tour then there is the option of the 72 at 22 and 52 which takes in a great many residential sights. Post-match there are plenty of buses laid on back to the town, simply go to the the stop located opposite car park 2 and this should get you back in ample time.