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Southend: Directions, Beer & Food

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NOTE: This information may be out-of-date in an ever-changing world.


Roots Hall, Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea , Essex SS2 6NQ.


The away entrance is in Fairfax Drive. The stadium has modern electronic turnstiles and tickets have to be purchased from the Ticket Office next to the entrance to Roots Hall. Try to keep your ticket relatively uncreased because it has to be inserted in a bar-code reader at the turnstile to gain entrance to the stadium.NOTE: Stewards are alerted when a concession or junior ticket is being used, so that they can check that it was for the appropriate person.


Previous experience of the Ticket Office:

The Southend ticket office was the least competent operation I have seen in a very long time. About 8 people, including the bird whose job was clearly to stand and pout, but only one of them could do anything at one time as they only had one very slow machine printing tickets.


Away fans are housed in the North Stand, the front of which is below pitch level, with steps leading up to each pitch access points. Like most former terraces that have had seats bolted onto them, the leg room and height distance between each row is less than desirable, resulting in little leg room between the rows and frequent banging of knees on the row in front and getting kneed in the back from the row behind. There is also a problem with the large number of supporting pillars impeding the view. Although this does not make for a great experience, at least the Stand is covered and its barrel-shaped roof enables comparatively few away fans to really make some noise, if prepared to sing.


The usual range of refreshments within the away area is served from a 'transport cafe' type establishment, complete with tables and chairs.


NOTE: Alcohol is not served in the stadium.


Disabled facilities:


Disabled supporters are advised to contact the Club before match-day to confirm arrangements as disabled facilities are very limited.


NOTE: In order to qualify for concessionary ticket prices and a complimentary ticket for the helper, supporters must produce evidence of disability living allowance.


There are six seats in the East Stand and a further two seats in the adapted executive box in the East Stand for visually impaired supporters. Headphones are provided and helpers are allocated seats alongside.


How to get there:


By road:


From the North:

From M25 Junction 29 take the A127 signposted Southend and stay on that road past ‘Welcome to Southend’ signs, over 3 sets of traffic lights and straight over Tesco's roundabout (the Strawberry Fields pub [brewer’s Fayre] and Premier Travel Inn). Over next traffic lights and at the next roundabout (Bell pub) take the third exit into Victoria Avenue. At the next traffic lights turn right (for the away end at Roots Hall into Fairfax Drive), although the club car park is straight ahead at those lights halfway up the hill and on the right by the club shop.


From the South:

From M25 Junction 30 take the A13 signposted Tilbury and stay on that road following signs to Southend, past Basildon, through Hadleigh and right into town. About 37 miles from Junction 30 you pass a large park (Chalkwell Park) on your right. Continue on the A13 towards the town centre for half a mile and the Palace Theatre is on the right, bear left along West Road and the ground is on the left after about half mile. The visitors' seats are left at the traffic lights, down the hill and left again at the next traffic lights. The club car park is half-way down the hill by the club shop.



There is plenty of street parking to be found. Otherwise there is a car park at the ground, behind the Main Stand, or there is the Southend High School For Boys which also offers car parking (the school entrance is on Prittlewell Road).


By train:

The closest station to the ground is Prittlewell, about a five minute walk away. It is served by trains from London Liverpool Street. As you exit the station turn right, you will then come to a crossroads with traffic lights. On your right is the 'Fish House', fish and chip shop. Pass this and turn right. Walk about 100 yards and the ground is tucked away on your left.


If you happen to end up at Southend Central station (served by trains from London Fenchurch Street), you're about a 25 minute walk from the stadium.


By bus:

The main bus station is close to Southend Central, and therefore it may be an idea to get a bus, rather than walk. Arriva buses 7, 8, 9 and 29, and First buses 20,21 and 25 go to the stadium.



The Fish House fish and chip shop located across the road from the Blue Boar by the traffic lights is excellent. It is pricey but also serves a ‘bargain’ meal.


There is also a the Fishy Flyer chippy about a quarter of a mile from the ground on Fairfax Drive. It's on the same road as the entrance to the away end and in the opposite direction to the ground (away from the traffic lights).


Along the sea front there are the normal fast food and slightly more upmarket restaurants off the Esplanade and the streets just behind.


Where to drink:


On your way into Southend on the A127, you pass the Bell, a large Toby Carvery, and the Strawberry Fields similar to the Clayton Green. This is convenient if staying at the Premier Travel Inn, but about 1.5miles from Roots Hall.


The town centre is around a 20 minute walk away, where there are plenty of pubs including a Wetherspoon's outlet (the Last Post on Clifftown Road), O’Neill’s, Yates, Varsity and Reflex, as well as plenty of individual pubs and bars. There are a couple of dozen located along the sea front and in the roads just behind.


The Railway Tavern near Prittlewell Station is a large pub, with a big selection of drinks served in proper glasses. It has live football on the big screens and a good mix of home and away fans. On our last visit we were made very welcome and thanked for our custom when we left.


Pubs near the stadium:

The Shrimpers Bar at Roots Hall is for members only.

The Blue Boar and Spread Eagle pubs are for home fans only.

The Golden Lion has been refurbished after fire damage and it is now the official pub for away fans. It is the nearest pub to the stadium on the A127, just up from the car park entrance to the Main Stand.

Previous experience of the Golden Lion:

The Golden Lion is a contender, in a field with strong competition, for the worst pub I have ever been in. More bouncers than bar staff, more beers off than on and the beer they did have was utterly rank.


What to do in Southend:


Southend has seven miles of award-winning sandy beaches and the world’s longest pier at 1.5 miles long,. The pier is constantly undergoing repair due to fires, boat crashes and storms


The town also has Adventure Island – a 40 ride funpark, located on the Western Esplanade straddling the pier, offering all sorts of rides for adults and children. The park has free admission with wristbands available depending on your size, ranging from £7 to £20, allowing unlimited rides throughout the day and into the night in peak season.


The Kursaal on the Eastern Esplanade used to house the largest amusement park in the south of England throughout much of the 20th Century. Closing in 1973, the original building gained listed status and is now home to a 30-lane Megabowl and the Rendezvous Casino.


The town is one of the most child-friendly with over 80 parks and 40 playgrounds, a Sea-life Adventure Centre on the Eastern Esplanade, the Kids’ Kingdom soft play area on the A127 and a skateboard park and BMX track.


For the more adventurous, there’s also the water-sports centre.


There are two big shopping arcades at either end of the High Street – The Royals and the Victoria Plaza. There are over 50 pubs, a dozen clubs, and over a 150 places to eat.

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