The Riverside Stadium is a 33,000 all seater stadium located in Middlesbrough, England.
It is the home of Middlesbrough Football Club and was originally opened in 1995 to replace their old ground, Ayresome Park after the Taylor Report, which required all top division football stadia to be all-seater.
The Riverside Stadium is fully enclosed, after the original “open corners” to either side of the West Stand were filled in with seating and additional corporate boxes during 1998. This added to the capacity of the stadium, as the original stadium could only seat 30,000 fans. When constructed, the Riverside was arguably the first modern stadium in the United Kingdom for decades, and has been the “template” for other new stadiums such as Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium and Derby County’s Pride Park.
The Riverside stadium was constructed by Taylor Woodrow Construction for £16 million, taking approximately nine months to complete after work began in the autumn of 1994. The name of the stadium was chosen by the club’s fans, following a vote during the final game at Ayresome Park.
Middlesbrough FC Riverside Stadium Layout – Away Fan Guide
All of the stands are two-tiered, although the West Stand is slightly larger than the other three sides, as it incorporates corporate boxes and business hospitality. It also houses offices, the boardroom and the dressing rooms. A real plus point of the stadium is the height of the roof, it’s slightly raised up above the seating areas to allow more light to get to the pitch, it also has additional “perspex panels” located between the roof and the back of the seating areas.
In 2016 there was a few major upgrades to the ground, which cost around £5 million pounds. These included a large video screen situated in the South East corner, new entrances, floodlights and camera positions to meet Premier League specifications.
Also included was 70-seat press conference room, a media working area, a mixed zone and no less than five interview rooms. For greater matchday coverage, the Riverside also needed TV companies to get their staff and equipment to the new TV studios, this meant on the outside of the South Easter Corner, a new external staircase was built. There are future plans for additional staircases to be built on the outside of the ground, however this has not yet materialised.
Outside the main entrance, you will find a pair of statues dedicated to two former Boro greats; George Hardwick and Wilf Mannion. In between the statues are the old entrance gates to Ayresome Park and the “Boro Brick Road”.
Away Fans – How to Get to the Stadium?
The Riverside Stadium is located just outside of Middlesbrough Town Centre. It houses all of the away supporters to one side of the East Stand, this is towards the South East corner.
Just under 3,000 fans can be accommodated in this area. The turnstiles are electronic, which means that you have to insert your ticket in a reader, to gain entry. Once inside then the leg room is good and the view from the away section is excellent. You can pick up an official programme for £3, or a Middlesbrough “Fly Me To The Moon” Fanzine for £1. (Correct at the time of Publication)
There is a standard range of food on offer inside of the stadium, such as Cheeseburgers (£3.80), Burgers (£3.50), Hot Dogs (£3.50), Pizza (£3), Chicken Balti Pies (£3), Cheese & Onion Pasties (£3) and Minced Beef Pies (£3). (Correct at the time of Publication)
If you’re looking for something slightly more filling then you will need to head into Middlesbrough Town Centre itself, as there are no restaurants or eating establishments near to the stadium itself.
Generally speaking, most of the pubs in Middlesbrough are OK for away fans. Most fans head for “Doctor Browns”, which is around a ten minute walk away from the ground at the bottom of Corporation Road, in the city centre. This pub serves real ale, has SKY Television and usually has a good mix of home and away fans, both inside and outside of the pub.
Riverside Stadium – Directions and Parking
Finding the stadium itself is quite easy. Heading north past Leeds on the A1 you can either stay on the motorway and head for the A66 at Darlington, or join the A19 at Topcliffe. If you’re travelling towards Darlington, just follow the A66 (signposted Teesside from the A1) past Darlington’s new ground and on into Middlesbrough. Carry on up the A66, through the centre of Middlesbrough and you will pick up signs for the Riverside Stadium. If travelling on the A19, follow all signs for Middlesbrough and you will quickly pick up the route of the Riverside Stadium (as it’s well sign-posted).
There is a small amount of parking available at the stadium itself (in Car Park E). It costs £6 per car and spaces can be booked through the ticket office. Otherwise there are a number of private parks located (mostly on waste land) nearby. (Prices Correct at the time of Publication)
The Riverside Stadium is around a 15 minute walk from Middlesbrough Railway Station which is located on Albert Road. Fans travelling from other parts of the country, will most likely find themselves changing at Darlington Railways Station for Middlesbrough, as Middlesbrough Station is not on the East Coast Mainline.
The Riverside Stadium has approximately 100 seasonal Disabled parking spaces, 40 in the main stadium car park and a further 60 in the car park behind the stadium. There are five spaces available for visiting Disabled supporters, which can be booked by telephone on 0844 499 1234.