|Address||Vale Park, Hamil Rd, Burslem, ST6 1AW|
|Telephone No.||01782 655800|
|Ground Facilities||Club house, bar and lounge|
|Capacity||18,947 (all seated)|
White Shirts Black Pinstripes Amber Trim, White Shorts Amber Trim, White Socks Amber Trim
Amber Shirts Black Trim, White Shorts Black Trim, Black Socks
The ground is located in the town of Burslem, one of the six towns comprising Stoke On Trent. Leave the M6 at junction 15 or 16 and take the A500 towards Stoke on Trent. Follow A500 until the A527 Tunstall/Burslem exit, where you take the A527 towards Tunstall/Burslem. At the next island just past the Price Kensington factory turn right for Burslem town centre. Continue on this road up the hill, crossing another island and into Burslem town centre. Continue straight on over the traffic lights at the cross roads and then take the first road on the left which takes you down to the ground. There is a large car park located outside a superstore next to the ground which costs £5, otherwise street parking.
Longport Railway Station is the closest to the Vale Park ground, but is a good 30 minute walk away and is not well served by trains, unlike Stoke On Trent station which is. Therefore most fans end up at Stoke On Trent railway station, which is over four miles away from Vale Park and then take a taxi up to the ground.
You can first get a number 9, 21A or 25 bus to Hanley Bus Station and from there a number 3 First Potteries bus up to Burslem. The No.3 is a frequent service that takes about half an hour. If buying a PlusBus ticket with your train ticket, then it costs £3 for unlimited bus journeys in the Stoke area for that day. On leaving Stoke railway station, turn left out of the entrance and proceed up to Bus Stop F, located in front of the taxi rank, to get the 9, 21A or 25 to Hanley Bus Station. After catching the Number 3 bus from Hanley, then on reaching Burslem, look out for The Swan Hotel in Swan Square on your left and get off immediately after the crossroads, in Wedgwood Street. After alighting the bus cross over the road and turn left, then an immediate right into Jenkins Street, leading into Hamil Road, which goes past the away turnstiles'.
Port Vale relocated to Vale Park in 1950 after the club
encountered financial difficulties during the onset of the Second World War.
Forced to sell The Old Recreation Ground to the council, initially there were
hopes that the site would be leased back to the club, however when Port Vale
realised that this was not feasible a new location was sought.
The club chose an affordable patch of land opposite Burslem park where the club had played in its formative years. Despite only recently overcoming financial troubles, management of the club planed to build an ambitious 80,000 capacity ground. As was the case with all large grounds at the time, it drew comparisons with the national stadium where it was dubbed The Wembley of the North.
The new ground cost £50,000 to complete however it was only contained half of the much vaunted capacity. Consisting of two sections known as the Railway Stand and Lorne Street Stand, Vale Park contained 40,000 terrace spaces and an estimated 360 seats. Besides the size of the ground, the pitch was also grabbing headlines at the time as it reportedly cost £100 – the most expensive ever laid at the time due to the site being a disused clay pit.
Relocation to Vale Park coincided with the most successful period in the club’s history, with Port Vale winning two divisional titles, and reaching the FA Cup Semi-final. Although they lost to West Brom, the local area was gripped by FA cup fever, and a few years later in 1960 the record attendance of just under 50,000 was set in a fifth round match against Aston Villa.
After the tragic events of the Bradford City Fire in 1985 new safety regulations saw the capacity of Vale Park reduced dramatically to 16,800. Compounded by the publication of the Taylor Report a the start of the 1990s, the last remaining standing section, The Loren Street Terrace was finally demolished during the 1997-1998 season. A new £3 million pound stand replaced it although it remains incomplete.
Entry for 2017/18 season will be as follows.
Lorne Street Stand: Adults £23, Aged 62 & over £18, Under 18's £12, Under 9's Free
All Other Areas Of The Ground: Adults £22, Aged 62 & over £17, Under 18's £10, Under 9's Free
Adults £22, Aged 62 & over £17, Under 18's £10, Under 9's Free.
PROGRAMME AND FANZINE
Official Programme £3 - Sold from booths within the ground.
Port Vale Beano Fanzine £1 (issued five times a season).
Last Season: 21st, Football League One
Average Attendance: 4,813
A Fans View
Up to 4,500 away supporters can be accommodated
in the Signal One Stand, where the view and facilities located on the concourse
behind the stand are good. Even a relatively small number of away fans can
really make some noise from this stand, as the acoustics are excellent. However,
the slope is quite shallow, which might affect your view should a tall person be
seated in front. Normally though, you could still move to another seat if
I've been to Port Vale on a number of occasions and always found it be a good day out. However the experience has sometimes been a little intimidating, not due to the Port Vale supporters but more because of the huge Police presence in and around the ground. One Police Officer said to me as we left the ground five minutes early, as my team were losing 4-0. "Leaving already? there's still five minutes to go!". Now who said that Police Officers don't have a sense of humour? The P.A within the ground is quite deafening at times and there is no escape, even in the toilets, as it is piped through! The food available on the concourse includes Rollover Hot Dogs (£2.50) and a selection of Wrights Pies; Steak (£2.50), Meat & Potato (£2.50), Cheese & Onion Pasties (£2.10) and Sausage Rolls (£2).
If you wonder at half time why the Port Vale fans seem transfixed with staring at the away end, it is not intimidation, but the electric scoreboard perched on the roof of this stand! (which the away fans can't see). Also at half time the Vale fans in the Railway Stand tend to transfer from one side to another so that can be nearer the goalmouth that Port Vale are attacking. Vince Smith a visiting Northampton Town fan adds; 'I must say it was an enjoyable day out at Vale Park, with very friendly stewards, turnstile operators and very good food served by friendly staff. All in all a very pleasant experience and far more enjoyable than a visit to their near neighbours.'
And for a bit of trivia, Dave Seddon, a visiting Brentford supporter informs me; 'the roof of the Hamil Road End was originally that of the Main Stand at Chester City's old Sealand Road ground'. Stephen Wood adds; 'The roof of the away end was indeed bought by Bill Bell back in 1991-92 for £300,000 as Chester were moving grounds. It was installed during the 1992-93 season and the first team we played when the roof was fully constructed was, you guessed it, Chester!'
Please note that cash is not accepted at the away turnstiles, you have to buy a ticket from the portacabin in the car park by the away end. This portakabin is 'cash only'. If you wish to pay by credit or debit card you will need to purchase tickets from the Main ticket office.