Boasting two of the country’s oldest teams in two of the UK’s best-equipped stadiums, Sheffield is a football fan’s dream. Both Hillsborough and Bramall Lane stadiums – less than three miles from our city centre hotels – are well worth checking out with dozens of welcoming pubs, cafés and restaurants nearby to complete your trip.
Stadiums in Sheffield
Opened in 1899, Hillsborough is home to Sheffield Wednesday, one of the oldest football teams in the world. The 34,854 capacity stand has hosted World Cup and European Championship football, and in 1989 was the scene of the Hillsborough disaster, which was a defining moment in football’s history and integral to the development of stadium safety.
With direct access to the M1 via the A61, getting to and from the stadium by car is relatively easy. If you arrive early enough, you can take advantage of on-street parking while there are several pop-up car parks that will charge around £5 per game, including at the nearby Owlerton Greyhound Stadium. Alternatively, park at the Meadowhall train station and take the Yellow tram to Leppings Lane. If arriving by Supertram from the city centre, take the Blue line to the Hillsborough stop which is then a 10-minute walk to the ground. Our Angel Street hotel is a great choice, 2.5 miles away and seven minutes by car or taxi.
Yorkshire is a hotbed for football, with dozens of teams vying for top-dog status. The main match each season is the Steel City derby between Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United, but the local derbies with Leeds United, Barnsley and Hull are also highly contested, with nearby rivalries existing with Rotherham United, Doncaster and Chesterfield.
On the Supertram route and just a few hundred metres from the stadium, The Hillsborough Tap is a local favourite, offering that tried and tested combination of good food, cask and craft beer and friendly service. Closer still to the ground is Shakey, offering pie and a pint deals, two-for-one cocktails and 10% off selected drinks one hour before and after the game, and while the match is underway.
A stadium of firsts: Bramhall Lane hosted the world’s first football tournament, the first floodlit match and is the oldest major stadium in the world to be still hosting professional association football matches, having seen its first game way back in 1862. Home to Sheffield United since 1899, it’s also one of the few grounds to double up, as it has also hosted Test Match cricket (Australia in 1902) and rugby league matches.
Handily located a mile from Sheffield train station, you can also use the Granville Road Supertram Stop on the Blue and Purple routes to get to the ground. The ground is easily accessed by car via the M1 and then the A61, with several car parks set up around the stadium on match days including on Eyre Street and Furnival Gate. Our St Mary’s Gate hotel is perfectly placed for match day and is just a seven-minute walk from the ground.
Located just south of the city centre, there are plenty of bars, pubs and restaurants around the ground. The nearest is The Cricketers Arms, which naturally gets very busy on match days, and offers a good selection of beers, wines and spirits with quick, friendly service. A little further afield, but still only a few minutes’ walk from the ground, is The Albion, a recently refurbished pub offering 14 rotating keg lines and a host of guest ales and craft beers. If you’re after something quick to go before or after the game, Man Friday has been described as the best fish and chip shop in Sheffield. For a wider selection of restaurants including Mexican, Italian and Vietnamese outlets, head to nearby London Road where you’ll find dozens of options.
Home to the city’s greyhound track, the 4,000-capacity stadium hosts three evening meetings and two daytime affairs, is the home of Sheffield Tigers Speedway and also hosts stock car race meets. Built in 1929, the course has a record of 28.96 seconds for a 500 metre race, a speed in excess of 60km/h!
Located north of the city centre, the stadium is easily accessible via the A61, with on-site parking available for £1 per vehicle. The stadium is a short three-minute walk from the Hillsborough Supertram stop on the Yellow and Blue lines and a five-minute taxi ride from Sheffield train station.
Speedway, a dirt track bike race where riders have one gear and no brakes (eek!), is a popular sport in Sheffield, with Owlerton Stadium hosting Speedway races since 1929. The Sheffield Tigers race every Thursday from March to October starting at 7.45pm. Stock Car racing, where hitting or pushing your opponent as an overtaking move is encouraged, is a high-octane form of motor racing with several races and meets during the year, with most events taking place on Sundays.
If you’ve not quite got your betting fix on the greyhounds, you can head to Napoleon’s Casino and restaurant just next door. With good deals at the restaurant including food, a free drink and bet, and well-priced food, it’s a great place to carry on the night or sit back at the bar and indulge in a spot of people watching. The nearest pub is The Old Crown, 100m down from the stadium and offering a solid selection of beer and quality pub food.