On Tuesday 18th April, the Valiants travel to Ipswich Town in League One action. Below is a guide for supporters who will be making the trip with us.
- Away Supporters Guide | Ipswich Town vs Port Vale
- Ipswich Town have provided a helpful travel guide for supporters making the trip to Portman Road
- Parking, ticketing, directions and facilities for away supporters all included within the guide
HOW TO GET TO THE STADIUM
The address is Portman Road, Ipswich, IP1 2DA. For Ipswich there are two main routes.
The first is via the A500 / M6 / M6 Toll / M6 / A14. Google Maps suggests a journey time of around 4 hours.
The second route is via the A500 / A50 / A6 / A6006 / A607 / B676 / B668 / A1 / A14. Google Maps suggests this route is likely to take around a bit over 4 hours.
With this being an evening game make sure you leave plenty of time. We would suggest that you allow at least another 60 minutes, and ideally 90 minutes, beyond the AA / Google / SatNav suggested journey time, to allow for possible delays.
Note: Please note that long-term roadworks have started between Bury St Edmunds and Stowmarket. We do not yet know what the impact will be, but there is a chance of significant delays and overnight road closures.
The Last Few Miles
Sat Navs vary in their recommended route into town, but whichever way you go, it shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes from the A14 / A12 to the ground.
For those without Sat Nav, once you reach the junction of the A14 and A12, just south of Ipswich, take the A1214 (London Road) for a couple of miles into town. As you approach the town centre area, there is a Sainsbury’s supermarket on the left – at this point, go straight on past Sainsbury’s and then almost immediately right onto West End Road. Take the first left (after about half a mile) onto Sir Alf Ramsey Way and you’ve arrived.
Note that the road immediately behind the Cobbold stand is blocked by flower beds and the road immediately behind the Sir Bobby Robson stand is closed about 90 minutes before the game, so to access the NCP car park on Portman Road you will need to continue on London Road, straight on to Handford Road and then turn right at a set of traffic lights onto Portman Road (if you miss the turning, just do a u-turn at the roundabout with Civic Drive, turning back onto Handford Road, then taking the first left into Portman Road).
Away coaches usually park in the West End Road car park, a 5-10 minutes walk from the ground.
The Station Hotel (away fans pub – see below) is just a couple of minutes away – go towards the bridge over the river, at the east end of the car park, turn right and you’ll find the pub the other side of the river, right opposite the railway station.
It is possible to arrange a drop-off nearer to the stadium for fans with mobility issues – please contact Ipswich Town's Disability Liaison Officer, Lee Smith, on 01473 400556 in advance of the game to arrange this.
Note: It will not be possible to get back to Stoke after the game.
From Stoke-on-Trent take a train to London Euston. Trains from London to Ipswich leave from London Liverpool Street. To get there from London Euston walk to Euston Square and take the Circle, Metropolitan or Hammersmith & City Line to Liverpool Street. Alternatively, take the Northern Line from Euston to Moorgate and change to the Metropolitan, Circle or Hammersmith & City Line to Liverpool Street. At Liverpool Street take a train to Ipswich.
www.greateranglia.co.uk shows trains leaving Stoke at 10 and 25 minutes pass the hour. The journey time if you leave at 10 minutes past the hour is around 3 hours 30 minutes whilst the journey time leaving at 25 minutes past the hour is slightly longer at around 3 hours 45 minutes – this is due to the need to change at Stafford for London Euston.
There are various options for the return journey on Wednesday.
If you are travelling back towards London only after the game, there are trains from Ipswich at 21:44 (you will need to leave very early to catch this), 22:23 and 22:43.
There are ticket checks on many mainline trains and ticket barriers at Ipswich. There have recently been stringent checks on tickets on arrival into Ipswich.
Whatever your travel plans, it’s worth checking www.greateranglia.co.uk for updated times and any late changes.
We are expecting a very big crowd, and so you will need to arrive early to be able to park near the stadium. The roads around the stadium are likely to take at least 45 minutes to clear after the game.
There is no official stadium car park, but there is parking all around the ground. The closest option is a large car park on Portman Road (right by the away end, post code IP1 2BP), which is likely to have space for this game up to maybe 90 minutes before kick-off. There are also large car parks on West End Road (5
minutes’ walk away, post code IP1 2DZ) and at the railway station (less than 10 minutes, postcode IP2 8AL). The town centre is less than 10 minutes’ walk, and has numerous car parks, as you’d expect. Being a town centre ground, most streets are controlled (residents only) parking, so free on-road parking tends to be at least a 20-minute walk away. As usual, the car parks nearest the ground are slow to clear after the game – the further you park from the ground, the less likely you are to face lengthy traffic delays post-match. One good option is the railway station car park (it’s controlled by cameras, and the pay stations are by the entrance to the station) - exit left onto Burrell Road / Ranelagh Road (B1075), then (after about a mile) left onto the A1214 to get out to the A14.
Three car parking spaces are available for visiting disabled supporters. Spaces can be booked by contacting Ipswich Town's Disability Liaison Officer, Lee Smith, on 01473 400556. There is no charge for this parking but note that the spaces are on the opposite side of the stadium to the away turnstiles.
OFFICIAL AWAY PUB
The Station Hotel is opposite the station, and is the official away pub. It has a garden and TV screens, and up to four beers on handpump, mostly from the Greene King stable.
Most pubs immediately around the ground are for home fans only, and few pubs around the town, if any, will welcome groups of away fans, especially wearing away team colours. As always, couples, families and older people will find it a bit easier to slip into a town centre pub for a quiet beer or two. Note that, on a match-by-match basis, police may designate other pubs in the town centre as home fans only. This is more likely nowadays as there have been a number of pub closures in the immediate area around the stadium. In practice, the smaller and the friendlier the away following, the easier it is to enjoy our many great pubs on a matchday.
There is a FanZone marquee and entertainment zone at the stadium, but this is strictly open to home fans only. There are ticket checks at the door.
The nearest cash machines to the stadium are a 5-10 minute walk away, (a) at the railway station, (b) at the Cardinal Park leisure facility (which has a number of chain restaurants, plus a KFC and a McDonalds), and (c) throughout the town centre.
Portman Road is now a cashless stadium. This includes the programme kiosks positioned close to the away fans entrance and on the corner of Sir Alf Ramsey Way / Portman Road (close to Planet Blue). Other programme kiosks do currently accept cash.
The 68-page matchday programme, priced at £3.50, can be purchased outside the stadium from the blue, tardis-like kiosks, but note that the nearest kiosk to the away end does not accept cash. Programmes are not for sale inside the ground.
As at most away grounds, you can expect to be searched prior to entering the ground. Ipswich Town also uses a trained search dog and some stewards now wear body cameras.
Large bags will not be permitted to be taken into the stadium. By way of guidance, nothing larger than a standard carrier bag will be allowed. There are no facilities to leave bags.
Portman Road is a traditional ground, with 4 separate stands. The away end is blocks V1 and V2 of the Cobbold Stand. This gives you a good side-stand upper-tier view of the action, though it is an older stand, which celebrated its 50th birthday last season.
Ambulant disabled fans, who require limited stepped access, will be seated within block S of the lower tier of the Cobbold Stand – this is an away fans block. Ambulant disabled supporters wishing to sit in the upper tier can do so but please note that there is no lift access or accessible toilet facility in this area.
As we do not have wheelchair spaces in the Cobbold Stand, wheelchair users are located with home fans in the Magnus Group West Stand. Four spaces are available.
Note that this fixture is all ticket for away fans, with no sales on the day.
Adult tickets are priced at £27.00 for block V1/V2. Adult tickets in block S, Cobbold Stand are priced at
£23.00 with adult tickets for wheelchair users (Magnus Group West Stand) priced at £20.00. These tickets include a carer.
Concession prices are available in all areas for Seniors over 65, under 23s and under 19s.
Wheelchair and ambulant disabled supporters will pay the relevant price category with the option of a carer free of charge. Ambulant disabled supporters can purchase tickets in the upper tier or lower tier but, as mentioned above, there is no lift access or accessible toilet facilities in upper tier.
The away ticket office in Portman Road (next to the away turnstiles) will be open on matchday to deal with any queries.
ACCESSIBLE TOILET AND BABY CHANGING FACILITY
Accessible toilets are on the concourse of the lower tier of the Cobbold Stand. A baby changing facility can be found in the ladies toilets in the lower tier of E block.
HUNGRY OR THIRSTY?
Note that all kiosks are cashless. Card and contactless will be accepted.
Food and drink facilities are what you’d expect (pies, burgers, confectionery etc). Alcohol will be available before the game and at half time (providing there are no issues). Food and drink prices are as follows:
Portman Road is a no smoking stadium. This includes e-cigarettes. Anyone found smoking will be ejected from the ground. For anyone considering leaving the stadium, note that no re-admission to the ground is permitted.
Subject to space, flags and banners are allowed in the away end. These will need to be fire certificated. For questions relating to this contact Neil McCluskey on firstname.lastname@example.org.
MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS AND SELFIE STICKS
Musical instruments and selfie sticks are not allowed in the away end.
As with all grounds and to comply with legislation, the use of pyrotechnics or even trying to get them into the stadium is a criminal offence and will not be tolerated.
Pushchairs are not allowed into the stadium. No storage is available so they will need to be left in your car.
The Club has radio headsets available to supporters with visual impairments ran through Soccer Sight, who provide dedicated descriptive commentary allowing the supporter to sit anywhere in the stadium.
If you would like to reserve headsets or you have any special requirements please contact Ipswich’s
Disability Liaison Officer Lee Smith on email@example.com or 01473 400556.
STAMP IT OUT
Racism or discrimination of any form is not ok, 'Not Today or Any Day' and supporters are reminded that instances of discrimination or prejudiced behaviour will not be tolerated at any EFL game.
Ipswich Town Football Club takes a zero-tolerance stance on any form of racial, homophobic or prejudiced behaviour. Supporters can report any incident instantly that they feel needs attention by texting the anonymous ‘Stamp it Out’ number on 07834 439429 (standard text rate applies). All reports will be handled in the strictest confidence.
You can also report any discrimination or anti-social behaviour to Kick it Out using the Kick It Out app which is available to download from the App Store or Google Play, or via: Facebook /kickitoutofficial; Twitter @kickitout; email firstname.lastname@example.org; phone 0800 169 9414.
Alternatively, our customer services can be contacted on email@example.com.
IF YOU'RE SPENDING A BIT MORE TIME IN IPSWICH
Ipswich has numerous hotels, many at the budget end of the market, within a comfortable walk from the ground. Of the chains, the nearest is the Penta hotel (5 mins), with the Premier Inn and Travelodge around 10-15 mins from the ground in the harbourside area and a newish lodge at the Mermaid pub (Marstons), also about a 10-minute walk. For a more upmarket option, the Salthouse Harbour Hotel is on the harbourside, and Milsoms (Kesgrave) is in a country house setting on the eastern edge of Ipswich. The Railway at Westerfield is about 2 miles out of town, but is a lovely traditional pub with great food and frequent trains that get you to Ipswich station in just a few minutes.
(There are many other hotels in and around Ipswich – we have no connection with these listed, but suggest them for convenience as they are mostly close to the ground and have been well spoken of by many fans).
There is so much to do in and around Ipswich, making it ideal for a short break. Local attractions include:
- Harbourside and marina, with numerous restaurants, cafes and bars
- Town centre, with many independent stores dotted around a fairly compact area
- New Wolsey Theatre, one of the UK’s leading regional theatres, with a year-round programme of great plays and shows, including their own productions and national tours.
- Christchurch Park, Mansion and Gallery – a huge, 70-acre park just north of the town centre, including a Tudor mansion which houses a renowned (and free) art gallery (with a permanent display of local artist John Constable)
- Pubs selling a wide range of locally-brewed real ales, including the Fat Cat, Dove Street Inn, Woolpack, Greyhound, St Judes Tavern, Arcade Street Tavern, Three Wise Monkeys, Thomas Wolsey (strictly home fans on a matchday), Spread Eagle, Lord Nelson and Briarbank Brewery. Of these, the Dove and St Judes often have their own-brewed beers amongst a wider range, whilst the Briarbank is a microbrewery with a wide range of its own
- Felixstowe is just 15 miles (15 minutes, via the A14) away to the east, and is both a traditional seaside resort (there’s a pier and the promenade stretches for a couple of miles) and major container port, which includes a fantastic viewing point, where you can see shipping movements and the loading / unloading of the world’s largest container ships.
- The Orwell Bridge carries the A14 over the river to Felixstowe, and is an impressive sight from below. You get to it off the A137, which is a mile or so east of the A12/A14 junction (turn towards Ipswich, down the hill, and then turn right at the first roundabout towards Shotley). The road under the Orwell Bridge then meanders for a few miles past Pin Mill (the Butt & Oyster is a lovely old waterside inn) and onto Shotley, which has loads of yachts and great views of the ports of Felixstowe and
- The historic little town of Woodbridge is just a few miles from Ipswich, with a tide mill, lots of little boutiques, some fine pubs, and an Adnams Wine and Beer store (next to the station).
- Just a bit further up the coast you’ll find the beautiful seaside town of Aldeburgh with its famous fish & chip shop (it’s the one at the south end of the High Street, with the big queue outside), as well as some
wonderful little shops and pubs. You’ll pass the concert hall, antique, home furnishings and fine foods shops of Snape Maltings en route to Aldeburgh, and it’s well worth the short detour – no national chains here!
- If you’ve managed to get as far as Aldeburgh, you may well be tempted to continue a bit further up the coast, past the impressive power station at Sizewell, to the beautiful seaside town of Southwold, home of Adnams beers, a pier, and lots of little shops and galleries.
- The delightful market town of Framlingham is about 20 miles north-east of Ipswich, home turf of the
club’s main sponsor Ed Sheeran, who put the town on the world stage with his ‘Castle on the Hill’ track.
- 10 miles south of Ipswich, on the Essex border, is Constable country, where you can visit the artist’s famous locations along the Stour valley, including Willy Lott’s cottage and the Haywain at Flatford