Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The site of the current stadium was first used by the football club in 1884 which, at that time, was a cricket ground used by the East Suffolk Cricket Club. Then, as now, the ground was owned by the local authority.
Over the course of the 20th century, the ground became exclusively utilised for football, and stands were gradually built and improved upon. The most recent improvements have been the demolition and rebuilding of both the North and South Stands (the latter being re-named the 'Greene King Stand'), giving an all-seater capacity of 30,300.
The main entrances are on Portman Road, Sir Alf Ramsey Way (renamed from Portman Walk in 1999) and Constantine Road. The pitch measures 112 x 82 yards.
Portman Road was originally used as a football pitch by AFC Ipswich in 1884 and was used as a cricket pitch during the summer. The pitch at that time is now an astroturf training pitch behind the Britannia stand. In the late 1800s AFC Ipswich became one of the first teams to use goal nets and there were boards around the ground as no stands were permitted. Thanks to the location of the ground being where there was good natural drainage the pitch has maintained a high quality reputation. In May 1936 the newly formed Ipswich United made a bid to turn professional and then renamed themselves Ipswich Town, this saw the start of building around the pitch.
In 1936 the pitch was rotated 90 degrees so that games would be played North-South rather than East-West. Railings were put around the pitch and terracing was built at the North and South ends. A small wooden seating area with a capacity of 650 was purchased from Arsenal and placed on the East Side. This stand was later sold on to Ipswich Witches speedway for their Foxhall Stadium in Ipswich.
Over the years the stadium grew until there was a record turn out of 38,010 for a game against Leeds United in the FA Cup Sixth Round on 8 March 1975. The addition of seats to all four stands eventually lowered the capacity to 23,300 before the new stands were built in the early 1990s.
The newest of the four stands, the North Stand was rebuilt in 2001/02 meaning the stand was closed for the start of the season and then opened a few blocks at a time as building working continued. The building work coincided with a drop in fortunes of the club. The new stand has two tiers. The lower tier is the popular area for the more vocal fans and is the only section of the ground where no discounts are given. The larger upper tier is slightly more expensive but tickets are available to anyone, it is still a very vocal section. To the west side of the lower tier there is a wheelchair users section.
- North Stand (Upper Tier): Adults £25, OAP's £18, Under 16's £8.50
- North Stand (Lower Tier): Adults £20, No Concessions*
Built in 1971 (an extra block and a few corner seats were built in the early 1990s) and historically known as the Portman Stand, it was renamed after the Cobbold family who have owned the club since the club was founded. It is a two-tier stand and the smallest of the four sides. The upper tier is where away fans sit, usually they are given one or two blocks towards the Green King stand side and if there is demand they are given two blocks of the lower tier as a discounted area (sometimes as an away family enclosure), when there is high demand then sometimes the club will also give one or two blocks on the North stand side. Sometimes in low risk games the police allow unsegregated seating in the seats around where the away fans sit. The central block is more expensive and there is a section of padded executive seating in the middle. The stand is also the home to much of the hospitality at the club and between the tiers there is a row of executive boxes.
- Cobbold Stand (Upper Premium Seats): Adults £42.50, OAP's £32, Under 16's £21
- Cobbold Stand (Upper Centre): Adults £29, OAP's £18, Under 16's £8.50
- Cobbold Stand (Upper Wings): Adults £24, OAP's £17, Under 16's £8.50 (if available)
- Cobbold Stand (Lower Tier): Adults £20, OAP's £14, Under 16's £5.50
- Cobbold Stand (Upper Wing): Adults: £24, Over 65's: £17, Under 16's: £8.50
- Cobbold Stand (Lower Tier): Adults £20, OAP's £14, Under 16's £5.50 (not always available)
Greene King Stand
There are two tiers to this stand that have different ages. The lower tier is the oldest section of the ground but had been renovated as part of the building of the upper tier, it is historically officially known as the South Stand but was popularly called the Churchmans Stand after the name of the Churchmans cigarette factory behind the ground. The lower tier was originally built around the time the team turned professional in the late 1930s/early 1940s a was extended after the war. Although often rebuilt there are still parts of the lower level of the stand that date back to the original stand. The upper tier was built behind the lower tier in the 2000/01 season.
- Greene King South Stand (Premium Seats): Adults £35.50, OAP's £26.50, Under 16's £17
- Greene King South Stand (Upper Tier): Adults £25, OAP's £18, Under 16's £8.50
- Greene King South Stand (Lower Tier): Adults £20, OAP's £14, Under 16's £8.50
A three-tier stand that also has a story of being built in phases. In 1957 the West Stand was built and is now the lower and middle tiers of the stand. In the early 1980s the upper tier was built and it became the largest of the four sides. More recently there have been additional executive facilities built into the stand. The 'board' sit in an enclosure in the middle of the middle tier, the press sit in the upper tier above them (highlight screens are available to anyone sitting in that area), wheelchair users have their own block on the South West corner of the stand, and there are two exectuve lounges that have been built into the stand on the South side, one of these (immediately above the wheelchair users section) is used by television when games are broadcast.
- Britannia Stand (Upper Premium Seats): Adults £32.50, OAP's £18, Under 16's £17
- Britannia Stand (Upper Centre): Adults £29, OAP's £18, Under 16's £8.50
- Britannia Stand (Upper Wings): Adults £25, OAP's £18, Under 16's £8.50
- Britannia Stand (Upper Outer Wings): Adults £24, OAP's £17, Under 16's £8.50
- Britannia Stand (Family Area Upper Tier): Adults £24, OAP's £17, Under 16's £5.50
- Britannia Stand (Family Area Lower Tier): Adults £20, OAP's £14, Under 16's £5.50
* The prices quoted are for those tickets purchased prior to matchday. Tickets purchased on matchday can cost up to £2 more per ticket.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details