Summer Football Fix in London – Take a Stadium Tour

West Stand Stamford Bridge

When did you last get the chance to tick off one of those lifetime ‘must-dos’?

London’s full of once in a lifetime experiences. And just right now, it’s got one more as far as I’m concerned.

What am I on about? Of course, lifting the FA Cup! Admittedly I wasn’t captaining my side to glory on a sun drenched afternoon in May at Wembley but it was the real FA Cup and I did lift it up. You can too!

We, my seven year old son and I, went to Stamford Bridge for a stadium tour. I should nail my colours firmly to the mast and say that I’ve been a Chelsea fan for nearly forty years and my son wasn’t really allowed much choice.

The tours are very popular with fans of all clubs and from all over the world. The group we went on the tour with were probably 50/50 UK based versus overseas visitors. The tour starts by 2 models of ‘old’ and ‘new’ Stamford Bridge. In the same room is the FA Cup. It costs £12 to have your photograph taken with it and you need to queue back at the ticket desk to pay for the photograph. For me the memory is enough.

On our hour long tour of the ‘new’ Stamford Bridge there is much for the fan in me to cherish and plenty for the rest of the group to enjoy. The press room, the tiny little (not much bigger than a broom cupboard) corridor where post match interviews take place and the dressing rooms all feature on the tour.
CFC home dressing room

We walk out to pitchside (but not onto the pitch) through the tunnel. I catch myself pointing out to my son whereabouts I stood the first time I visited and overhear others doing the same. “Of course, it’s all changed now”, we silently mutter. The tour finishes in the upper tier of the ‘Shed’ stand and then we are free to wander around the Chelsea Megastore and the Chelsea Museum.

The Museum’s fantastic! But then seeing Micky Droy’s shirt or Jose Mourinho’s Armani coat has a bit more meaning for me than it would for many people. My seven year old just about got the coat but Micky Droy was lost on him. I thoroughly enjoyed myself, so did my son and we got to tick the life experience box marked, ‘Lift the FA Cup’. Now, what’s next on that list?

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  1. King Botley says:

    Nice Mickey Droy reference, such happy days. Has there ever been a more handsome footballer? (Number 14 in the Times Online worst 50 footballers of all time list, 2007, fact fans http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/football/article2025420.ece

    Perhaps the next thing on the list would be Brentford vs. Brighton & Hove Albion, Saturday 15th August (Adults £13 Children £1 in the family end of the Braemar Road) for some ‘football like it used to be’?!

    G x

  2. Karen says:

    The tour sounds great – would love to do it, what a great idea! My ‘life experience list’ would include watching 2012 Olympics – when and how will we Londoners be able to get tickets for events? Does anyone out there know what the protocol/availability will be?

  3. ric_ says:

    The tour sounds good, but how much is it?

    • John Whiddett says:

      The tours are currently adults £15 and concessions £9. There is also a package which includes a meal after the tour. Chelsea also occasionally run ‘Legends’ tours where your guide is an ex-player, the last one was on Father’s Day and was led by Pat Nevin..

      • Karen says:

        How can we get John Terry to do one before he departs for the north??? Are there ever any where the current team pitch up and how would we know about that?

      • John Whiddett says:

        The ‘Legends’ tours have only ever been led by ex-players. Details are always posted on the Chelsea FC website. Perhaps current players need to move on or retire before they become legends?! Maybe JT can become legendary if he ‘departs for the north’… or perhaps he won’t go.

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