|A Guide To AFC Totton & The Testwood Stadium|
Thu 01st Dec 2011 22:50
All you need to know if your going to Sunday's game in collarboration with AFC Totton
AFC Totton were formed a year after Saints and celebrate their 125th anniversary this year, the two clubs met in what was the first ever competitive fixture for both Clubs in the innaugral year of the Hampshire Junior Cup when on November 26th 1887 Totton hosted Saints in the first round, ironically the fixture was played on the Southampton side of the River Test, in a field behind the Anchor Hotel, Saints won 1-0 and went on to win the competition, thereafter the two clubs fortunes went in opposite directions.
Totton plied their trade in the local leagues moving to Testwood Park in the centre of the town in 1933 and remaining there until last season when they moved to the brand new Testwood Stadium a mile away at Calmore.
Their finest hour to date came in 2007 when they played only the second domestic cup final at the ground when they lost to Truro City in the final of the FA Vase in front of a crowd of over 36,000 including over 20,000 supporting the Stags.
Manager Stuart Ritchie is a product of Redbridge School and played in the top flight for Aston Villa as a sub at Old Trafford and then had spells at Crewe Alexandra and Waterford in the Republic of Ireland before being a stalwart of the Southern League scene, ending his career at Totton he took over seven years ago and has guided them from being a Wessex league Club playing in front of around 50 people to their current status in the Ryman Premier with an average approaching 400.
He and his assistant Sean New have taken the club to within three promotions of the Football League in the non league pyramid system and the Club currently are well placed for the promotion that would take them into the conference South alongside Eastleigh, although in recent weeks they have been knocked off the top spot due to the cup run, having now played less games than some of their rivals.
Totton is undoubtably a footballing town, always a place well represented in local football, indeed former Wessex league rivals of the Stags, Totton & Eling themselves play in a smaller purpose built stadium directly behind the main stand, the gates at Testwood park are higher than most in their division and higher than some in the division above, indeed they are not that far behind Eastleigh a club well established in the Conference South a division above, hoefully this cup run will make local football fans more aware of where Totton are and will reflect in increased attendances in the future.
Testwood Stadium is a purpose built stadium to Conference South standard and unlike many other clubs at this level in the non league pyramid in that it has seats on two sides of the ground and terracing on all four sides, meaning that all the crowd can have a raised view of the play.
The Ground is on the A36 from the centre of Totton on the Salisbury road and is situated adjacent to Calmore Roundabout.
If coming from the M27 Exit at Junction 2 and follow signs to Central Totton, after approximately 3/4 mile the ground is one the left for car parking pass the ground and at the roundabout take the first exit on to the industrial estate.
There is noCar Parking at the ground itself for this match but parking is provided on the Calmore Industrial Estate, turn on to the estate and you are on Brunel Road, you have the choice of either parking on Brunel Road or using the car park of Mansell's who are the first company on the right as you enter Brunel Road. Parking is free but do not park on the forecourts of any of the companies on the estate (other than Mansell's) as you may be liable to be clamped.
This is the nearest parking to the ground and there will be enough room to accomodate all who would wish to travel by car, do not park in nearby residential roads, as they are no nearer the ground than this parking.
Solent Blue Line run a bus service from Southampton to Calmore Roundabout within 150 metres of the ground, the fare from Southampton is approx £4 return for adults. There is a bus hourly on a Sunday as follows. On A Sunday service X7 Salisbury express bus does not go past the ground but vvia Cadnam so is not advisable.
Solent Blue Line Serivice 12 (Times past the hour) Journey time from Southampton approx 18 mins.
Soton Central Station 09 mins, Totton Station 20 mins, Calmore R/bout 27 mins
Calmore Roundabout 34 mins, Totton Station 39 mins Soton Central 42 mins.
Totton station is approximately 1 1/2 miles from the ground, the easiest way is to get a taxi or use the bus, times as above. To walk exit the station on Platform 1 side at the end of the road turn left and walk approx 1/4 mile into centre of Totton (Taxi Rank is opposite Elephant & Castle Pub next to HSBC Bank) at roundabout in centre take the road marked Salisbury, stay on this road for approximately 1 1/4 miles ground is at roundabout on right hand side.
Specific Arrangements For this Match.
The ground will be segregated for this match, Bristol Rovers supporters will have excliusive use of turnstile A which is behind the North goal (Furthest from the roundabout) they will be allocated the terracing behind this goal and part of the North East side terracing in front of the club house,
Home supporters should use turnstiles B & C which are located behind the West Stand, this is the side that runs paralel with the main Salisbury Road.
Inside the ground the main stand is for Seated ticket holders whilst all other ticket holders may use any part of the ground apart from the North end reserved for the away fans, the smal seated stand on the West Side is unreserved and supporters can use this on a first come first served basis, for no seat ticket holders this will be the only covered accomodation.
Turnstiles open at 10.15am
Eating & Drinking In The Ground
The Club House bar will be reserved for Bristol Rovers supporters and can only be accessed from within the away section, Totton Supporters have exclusive use of the function suite which can be accessed from behind the main stand, in the function suite in addition to the normal bar there will be a seperate bottle bar and for ease of service all beers whether draft or bottled will be £3 on the day.
There will be various food outlets within the function suite and around the ground.
Eating & Drinking Outside the Ground.
There are only two pubs within walking distance of the ground and these are not likely to open till Noon although they may have obtained an earlier licence.
The Testwood is on Salisbury Road heading from the ground towards Totton and is approximately 1/4 mile from Calmore Roundabout, recently renovated it is now more of a family eating pub but does have a bar area but no TV's etc.
The Saxon is situated on Calmore Housing Estate, again about a 5 minute walk from the ground, cutting through the cul de sac on Salisbury Road opposite the ground and then straight ahead up Blackwater Drive.
For those travelling from further afield The Vine Inn & Mortimers Tavern at Ower are approximately 1 mile towards Salisbury on the A36.
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