Grays Athletic

Ground Name: Recreation Ground
Capacity: 3,500 (1,000 seated)
Address: 
Bridge Road, Grays, Essex, RM17 6BZ

Main Telephone No: 01375 377753
Fax No: 01375 391649
Club Nickname: The Blues
Year Ground Opened: 1906
Pitch Size: 110 x 71 yards
Home Kit Colours: Sky Blue & White
Official Web Site: 
www.graysathletic.co.uk
Unofficial Web Site: 
Supporters Association

What are the grounds like?

Although the Club have played at the Recreation Ground since 1906, the ground itself is fairly new having been completely re-developed in recent years. On one side of the ground is the Main Stand. This covered all seated stand is on the smallish side, being only five rows in height, but does run the full length of the pitch. The dugouts are located in front of the Main Stand, but the dressing rooms are located on the other side of the ground, leading to a procession of players and team officials at half time and at the end of the game. One unique feature of the ground is that the dressing rooms (along with a refreshment area) are located below a block of flats that overlooks the ground. As to be expected a number of residents that live in the flats can be seen on their balconies watching the game, some complete with flags draped outside. This side of the ground has on one side a small partly covered terrace that extends around one corner of the ground into the intriguingly named Ball Court End. On the other side there is little to it, with no terrace as such, just a flat open walkway, where some fans elect to stand. The Ball Court End is the home end, and is a covered to the front. There are also a number of supporting pillars for the roof of this small stand. Opposite is the Bradbourne Road End, a small open terrace. Beyond one corner of this end is a church which overlooks the stadium. There is a small club shop situated inside the ground and the stadium also has a set of four small modern floodlights, located at each corner. The pitch has a slope which slopes down from the Ball Court End towards the Bradbourne Road End terrace.

Future Developments

The Club are committed to bringing the Recreation Ground up to Football League standard and plans are being drawn up to re-develop the Ball Court End of the ground.

What is it like for visiting supporters?

If segregation is in force, then away fans are primarily housed in the Bradbourne Road End. As this end is open to the elements, it may be an idea to transfer to one of the 150 or so seats allocated to away supporters in the Main Stand. There is no supplement charged for a seat in the Main Stand and these are allocated on a first come, first served basis. Refreshments are provided in this area by the obligatory ‘burger van’.

The Club used to have a refreshment bar, which was ‘famous’ for its burgers, but alas it is no longer in operation. A sign on the wall inside the old refreshment area made me chuckle as it read; ‘This is not Burger King. You can’t have it anyway. You can have it my way or not at all!’ On my visit there was a bit of atmosphere generated from the home end and the stewarding was fairly relaxed.

Where to drink?

The town centre is only about a ten minute walk away from the ground. There you will find a few eating outlets, but little in the way of pubs. Across the road from the main entrance to the ground is a pub called the Bricklayers Arms. Probably best though to head for the Clubs own bar the ‘Blues Bar’ at the ground. This fair sized bar has a number of screens showing sport, allows families in and I found it to be friendly. The bar has been previously listed in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and at the time was the only football club to be featured in the Guide that covers the whole of the UK. It has five real ales on pump, including one that is specially brewed for the Club. The entrance to the bar is located next to the main entrance to the ground in Bridge Road.

How to get there and where to park?

Leave the M25 at Junction 30 and take the A13 towards Southend. Then take the A1012 towards Grays. Keep straight on the A1012 into Grays and as you reach the town centre the road becomes the A126 and you follow this road (which is part of the one way system) around the town centre. Keep left around the one way system and continue onto the A1013 Orsett Road. After about another half a mile (going up hill) turn right into Bridge Road. The entrance to the ground is down on the right.

There is no parking facilities at the ground as such, but there is some street parking to be found in roads opposite the main entrance. Alternatively there is a multi storey car park in the town centre (near to the train station) which is a short walk away.

By train

Grays is served by trains from London Fenchurch Street and lies on the London to Southend line. The station is under a ten minute walk away from the ground. As you come out of the station turn right and go along Crown Road. Follow the road around to the left as it becomes Stanley Road and then turn right into Clarence Road. Third road on the right is Bradbourne Road, which takes you down to the entrance to the away end. For the Main entrance and Club Bar instead, continue along Clarence Road and follow it around to the right which goes into Bridge Street. The entrance is down on the right.

Admission Prices

All Areas Of The Ground:
Adults
Students
OAP’s & Under 16’s
Under 11’s  (must be accompanied by an adult or Senior Citizen).

Local Rivals

Canvey Island, Southend United.

Fixtures

For the Grays fixture list click here (to take you to the BBC Sports Website)

Record and Average attendance

Record Attendance:
9500 v Chelmsford FA Cup 1959

Average Attendance:
2006-2007: 1,077 (Conference National)
2005-2006: 1,444 (Conference National)
2004-2005: 568 (Conference South)