Page 32 - The Twelfth Man - Issue 1
P. 32

Accessible Anfield Issue 1 Matchday and Non-Matchday
Access at Anfield
Anfield Non-Matchday
Experience
The local area around the stadium
at Anfield is currently part of a major regeneration project being undertaken by Liverpool City Council.
Most of the properties in front of the Kop have now been demolished and a massive rebuilding of the area is underway.
Whilst this is significantly improving the look of the local area for residents and visitors alike it is making navigating the streets surrounding the stadium quite difficult for wheelchair users, especially for those with powered wheelchairs.
The new paved areas are accessible
and have dropped Kerbs which allow easy access but the majority of the paved areas awaiting redevelopment sadly do not have any dropped kerbs and they are extremely uneven to navigate and indeed in some cases impossible, resulting in the wheelchair user having to use a very busy road to get on the Anfield stadium footprint.
It is worth mentioning at this juncture
that to overcome some of these obstacles Liverpool Football Club do provide advice on the official club website advising disabled supporters of accessible drop
off points around the stadium. They also provide disabled parking bays directly in front of the Anfield Road stand which allows easy access on to the stadium footprint, these can be pre booked by contacting
the fan services disability team in the ticket office at Anfield who are most helpful. Once on the footprint of the stadium it
is a completely different matter. A lot of thought seems to have been put into the planning stages of any rebuilding that has taken place and it is very easy to access all parts of the outer stadium by wheelchair. Personally, I follow Liverpool FC throughout Europe and England in my wheelchair and it’s fair to say that the amount of thought that has been put into making Anfield so accessible is not something that I see in abundance elsewhere.
When you go through the Paisley gates which are located directly in front of the Kop you can access the Kop bar, it has an accessible toilet and has a level entrance, a
nice place to visit pregame.
When leaving the Kop bar, you pass the
Shankly statue and come to the ticket office which for wheelchair users benefits from having a low counter and is for disabled fans only. You can find this located at the very first ticket office window and it is signposted. Here, the dedicated staff from the LFC fan services team are on hand to deal with any query that you may have or provide you with your match ticket if you have chosen to collect.
If you then proceed through the gates directly next to the ticket office window
you come to the club store which is also fully accessible although on matchdays it is extremely busy and makes getting around the store quite difficult. If intending to use the club store on your visit to Anfield I would
strongly advise getting there at least 3 hours before kick-off especially if you want to spend a bit of time looking around the store.
When you come out of the club store you will see the entrance to the club tour and museum, up to the time of writing this article I have not had the opportunity to experience the new club stadium tour so I am unable to provide details on it but I will ensure that by the time the next magazine is published this will have been addressed.
This area is also where you will find a
live music stage, a big screen showing highlights of LFC games and food stalls, but this is on matchdays only.
If you now proceed towards the new main stand and go along 96 Avenue you will pass by the Hillsborough Memorial which
is located at the bottom of the new main stand. There are plenty of seating areas available on 96 Avenue for anyone who wants to stop and reflect after visiting the memorial.
Ifyoucarryonuptothetopof96
Avenue you come to the Anfield Road end of the stadium, again it is fully wheelchair accessible and also has a fan park in front of the stand that is fully accessible, it has bars, food stalls and things to do for children. The fan park is only open on matchdays.
If you go down to the end of the stand you will come to the Shankly gates which give access to the Sir Kenny Dalglish stand, please note that the Shankly Gates are only open on matchdays.
All in all, accessibility around the stadium on non-matchdays is fantastic for wheelchair users with the exception of the Sir Kenny Dalglish stand all areas of the stadium are fully accessible and it is well worth a visit.
Anfield Matchday
Experience
The Sir Kenny Dalglish wheelchair tribune (Kop End)
This was undertaken at the FA cup replay between Liverpool Fc and Shrewsbury Town which was played on Tuesday 4th February 2020 it was scheduled to kick off at 19.45 but kick off was put back to 8pm due to traffic problems.
We arrived at Anfield at 5pm which
    A lot of thought seems to have been put into the planning stages of any rebuilding that has taken place.”
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