There are many things that people know England for. Its criminal weather. The lack of a proper national cuisine. Its Royal Family. And of course, its football teams. The English Football League (EFL) is one of the best-loved around the globe. Fans flock to see games from all the leagues and divisions involved. From the 20 teams involved in the top-tier Premier League through to those in the lower divisions. There will always be a compelling football match on for avid fans to spectate in one way or another.
Speaking of the Premier League, at the end of the 2022-23 season, three teams ended up promoted to it. Those teams are Burnley, Sheffield United and Luton Town. In the 2023-24 season, those three teams will play in the Premier League. One of the most surprising of those promotions was Luton Town. Especially considering how small its stadium is – only holding 10,356 fans.
Kenilworth Road will be going through some renovations to make it Premier League-ready. The £10 million rebuild of part of the stadium will complete within 12 weeks. Even so, the ground is nowhere near the town centre. While the team does have plans to move to Power Court, this won’t be for a couple of years yet. That move will put Luton Town FC closer to the town centre, though. This got us thinking – which clubs have grounds close to their city or town centre already? We’re going to take a look at the centrally-located grounds of English football clubs.
Hartlepool United Football Club bases itself out of Victoria Park. The team became an entity in 1908. Following its relegation at the end of the 2022-23 season, the team will play in the National League.
Anyone choosing to support the team and watch a game at the stadium has the shortest walk from the centre. It is only a 0.2-mile trip to take, which is very much a walkable distance from the town. This makes it the shortest journey time for fans, only taking one minute to complete.
The Terriers, as Huddersfield Town FC is sometimes referred to play at the John Smith’s Stadium. The team competes in the EFL Championship, which is one below the Premier League. Before playing at the John Smith’s Stadium, the home ground was at Leeds Road. Yet that all changed in 1994.
Anyone in Huddersfield town centre would need to travel 1.1 miles to the current stadium. This doesn’t put it outside of the town centre by too much. It’s still one of the stadiums closest to the centre by far.
EFL League One plays host to Barnsley football club. Founded in 1887, the team has always played its games at Oakwell Stadium. It is only a 13-minute walk from Barnsley town centre to the stadium, which remains within close vicinity. It will be the new home ground of defender Kacper Łopata for the 2023-24 season, too. The 21-year-old Polish player has signed a four-year deal with Barnsley.
The Leyton Orient Football Club bases itself out of Leyton, Greater London. Situated in the borough of Waltham Forest, the stadium is only a 0.3-mile trip from the centre. Following promotion from League Two, Leyton will play in League One for the 2023-24 season.
As is the case with Leyton Orient, Peterborough plays in League One of the EFL. The team has spent its entire history playing at London Road stadium. At the moment, this ground goes by the name of Weston Homes Stadium. Visiting Peterborough city centre put you within a 0.3-mile walk to the stadium.
Chelsea & Fulham
Anyone who is a fan of the Premier League will know about Chelsea already. It’s one of the various staples of this league. The team plays at Stamford Bridge, in Fulham, West London. Chelsea isn’t actually that far away, though. In fact, it’s a 25-minute walk from the centre of Chelsea to Stamford Bridge, based in Fulham. As it happens, Fulham FC (another Premier League club) has a similar distance to its stadium. Craven Cottage is the ground for Fulham, which is alongside the river Thames.
If you want to know about the team with the stadium farthest from town, you need to look at Arsenal. The ground – the Emirates Stadium – is 10.6 miles away from Woolwich, the club’s spiritual home. It’s also a 6.2-mile journey for Barnet fans from the town centre to their ground, The Hive Stadium.