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Ground of the week

You are in: London > Radio > The Non League Football Show > Ground of the week > Ground of the week: Kit Kat Crescent!

York City, Bootham Crescent

York City, Bootham Crescent

Ground of the week: Kit Kat Crescent!

Find out about York City's ground, Bootham Crescent. How they celebrate with a big cake! Want to nominate your club for ground of the week? Email nonleague@bbc.co.uk

Fact File

Location: Kit Kat Crescent, York, YO30 7AQ

Capacity: 9,034

Transport:

By Road: take the A19 towards York City Centre and keep going until
you get to a pub on your left called the Burton Stone Inn,
at which point you turn left into Burton Stone Lane.
Then take the first right into Grosvenor Road for the ground.

By Rail: York mainline train station. Then 15-20 minute walk to the ground

"Obviously we cant advertise which chocolate bars are sold at Kit Kat Crescent. "

During half time at York City's home game last Thursday, the Club's patron, the Archbishop of York cut a specially commissioned birthday cake to mark the 75th anniversary of the Minstermen¹s move to Bootham Crescent. Or to give it the corporate name KitKat Crescent.

In January 2005, thanks to a sponsorship deal with major York employer Nestle Rowntree, Bootham Crescent was renamed after the popular chocolate snack.

Jokers bombarded the fans forums at the time with various witty lines from the "we certainly need a break" to the not enthusiastic "I give it two fingers."

Despite its re-branding, the stadium is still commonly referred to as Bootham Crescent.
York City purchased the land, which used to be a cricket ground in the summer of 1932. Bootham Crescent was opened on 31 August of that year and the record attendance was reached in March 1938 when 28,123 people watched City play Huddersfield Town.

The stadium itself is a compact affair, situated against a backdrop of terraced housing. With a capacity for 9,034 supporters, it is large by nonleague standards but of course York were a football league club until relegation in 2004.

Main stand

The tall Main Stand is an all-seater that goes along two thirds of the length of the pitch.
It is where the dressing rooms, club offices, ticket offices and hospitality suites are located. It has open corners to either side ­ one of which houses the supporters club.

The view of the pitch - which at 105x67.5 metres (115x74 yards) is about the same size as Wembley - is excellent from the Main Stand although the supporting pillars can occasionally cause a problem.

Supporting pillars are more of a problem in the smaller Popular Stand opposite. On its roof is a television gantry that at first glance looks to have been put together by a dodgy scaffolder.

If you like going behind the goals, there is a very good view from either end.

York City Bootham Crescent

York City Bootham Crescent

At one end is the David Longhurst Stand. 

This is a covered terrace where the home fans congregate. This is where the majority of the noise comes from. It is fairly large with seemingly good acoustics.

It was this end that was damaged by a Luftwaffe bomb Opposite is the Grosvenor Road End, reserved for away supporters.

Once through the turnstiles there is a feeling of travelling back in time as the terrace is uncovered and the mens toilets seem to have been there since the Vikings ruled the city. They are the open air "stand up against a brick wall" urinals.

At least there is a portakabin for the female fans. The good news is that over 2,000 away fans can be accommodated and 300 seats in the Popular stand are made available to away fans if there is a desire to sit or a desire to avoid the rain.

Food at the ground, which is reasonably priced, includes pies, chips and mushy peas, burgers, hot dogs and chocolate bars. Obviously we cant advertise which chocolate bars are sold at Kit Kat Crescent.

Car parking at the ground is notoriously difficult as many of the roads around the ground are for residential permit holders only The ground is completed with a set of four floodlight pylons, installed during the summer of 1995, costing £122,000.

A new drainage system was installed to improve the quality of the pitch during that winter, costing several thousand pounds. A water tower was also installed in the late 1990s It is questionable whether the water tower and new drainage system actually worked as the KitKat Crescent pitch was relayed for the 2007­/08 season. The reason being that as the poor quality of the pitch was blamed for the teams poor home form the previous season.

The club hope to move to a new purpose built stadium by 2015 which will no doubt be clean, well presented, have excellent facilities and no restricted views.

For the nostalgic stadium lover this will be a loss.

Like York itself, Kit Kat Crescent radiates a rich sense of history ­ although that might be the open air urinals.

last updated: 13/02/2008 at 14:31
created: 03/09/2007

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