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Official Review by Gary Foxall, Stadium Journey Special Correspondent
The New York Stadium is the brand new home of Rotherham United Football Club from England’s fourth tier. The Millers, as they are nicknamed had previously played at Millmoor, a typical lower league venue for many years and the new venue is a stone’s throw from the club’s spiritual home. Photographs of Millmoor are enclosed within the viewing area and this will give the visitor a gauge with regards to the differences between old and new stadia within the lower echelons of the English game. Surprisingly although the new stadium development brings clubs far more income generation opportunities some older supporters when asked still prefer the historic version!
The club temporary played at the Don Valley Stadium in nearby Sheffield whilst New York Stadium was built having left Millmoor due to a dispute with the owners of the land. The New York Stadium takes its name from the land it is built on and is one complete build with four joined up stands with slightly differing heights. The venue has an all seated capacity of 12,021 with seats in the club colours of red and white. The continental style floodlights give the stadium a different identity from similar new lower league developments of the last decade so “start spreading the news” as the Sinatra song goes. A visit to Rotherham’s New York is a welcome addition to the Football League’s stadium list.
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Outlets within the stadium sell a range of pies, pasties, hot dogs and burgers in addition to hot and cold drinks. These are reasonably priced and the food is of good quality.
It would take very little to improve the atmosphere compared to the club's temporary Don Valley experience. However Rotherham United has tried extremely hard to ensure the New York experience is one that will bring supporters back to the club. Home supporters generate most of the noise from the KCM Recycling Stand and with the addition of Cheerleaders the atmosphere is totally different from that of Millmoor and Don Valley.
Rotherham is a small town within the steel city of Sheffield and other than High Street shops there is not much to attract the visitor. Sheffield itself however has plenty to offer with its main attraction being the Meadowhall Shopping Centre. The city is also famous for its Crucible Theatre, the home of the World Snooker Championships.
There are three Wetherspoon pubs in the town centre with the Bluecoat being in the CAMRA guide and is a meeting venue for home supporters. Other than McDonalds and Greggs there are only tea and coffee shops in the town centre.
Like many lower football league clubs within the English pyramid system, Rotherham United have a loyal band of followers who are the livelihood of the British game. The move to the New York Stadium has seen a rapid improvement in attendance with the first few games sold out. Despite a slight dip in form on the field attendance has held at 7,000, which is a big improvement on what the club has historically been used too. Local rivals are Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United and other Yorkshire clubs such as Barnsley, Huddersfield Town and Doncaster Rovers.
The stadium is located off Junction 33 of the M1 by taking signs towards Rotherham Town centre. The ground is a five minute walk from the centre and Rotherham Railway Station which has connections to the main line in Sheffield. Cheap car parks are available in the town centre but parking at the stadium needs to be booked in advance. The nearest airports are Manchester, Doncaster and East Midlands.
Admission prices for Rotherham games are £18 and £20 for adults with reductions for O.A.P's and juveniles if purchased in advance. Tickets bought on the day cost two pounds more.
There is a club shop situated by the main entrance to the stadium selling replica shirts and club memorabilia. Betting outlets are available within the stadium and the club produces a match day programme for each game priced at £3.
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Rotherham, England S60 2DJ
1 The Oasis Meadowhall Centre
Sheffield, England S9 1EP
0845 600 6800
55 Norfolk St
Sheffield, England S1 1DA
0114 249 6000
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