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Guide to the Stoop


By Prof
December 27 2005

The Harlequins' Match Day experience is second to none: we're lucky enough to be one of the few clubs who enjoy a stadium designed for rugby, and a Saturday afternoon at the Stoop has to much to offer for old hands, and newcomers alike. Here's everything a visitor needs to know.



The Old West Stand (Emma Cox)

Thinking of visiting the Stoop? Before you read the rest of this article you might like to browse around an ambitious project that Come All Within regulars took part in on 25 Oct 2003 we worked together to try and capture in pictures the full variety and texture of a Match-Day at the Stoop. Altogether over 400 pictures were submitted, all taken on the same day, and the best of them are displayed here: A Life In A Day at the Stoop

Hopefully that's whetted your appetite, so here's some practical advice:

How to get there

The address of the Stoop is The Twickenham Stoop Stadium, Langhorn Drive, Twickenham, Middlesex, TW2 7SX.

It's very easy to get to:

By Rail: The nearest station is Twickenham, about 10 minutes walk away. Twickenham is on the Reading to Waterloo line, and The National Rail website will enable you to plan your journey.

  1. When you arrive cross the road and turn right.
  2. Keep to the left at the junction, you're now on Whitton Road.
  3. Take the first left - Court Way
  4. Take the first left - Craneford Way
  5. Follow Craneford Way round to the right and walk all the way to the end
  6. Turn right on to Langhorn Drive and you're there.
    Here's the route on a map.

On Foot: Here's a map which also shows Twickenham Station.

By Bike: There are the fabled 'Tony Copsey Memorial' Bike Racks in the car park behind the North Stand.

By Boat: The Duke of Northumberland's River runs behind the LV Stand, although it may be possible to row to The Stoop the chances of doing it without getting tetanus are small!

By Car: Getting to the Stoop from outside London is very straightforward:

  • Travel round the M25 until you get to the M3.
  • Take the M3 toward London
  • before long you'll find you are on the A316, then within 10-15 mins you'll see the Stoop on your right.
  • It's a dual carriageway, so you have to go past the Stoop to the next roundabout, and turn back.
  • There are car parks, well signed, just after the turning for the Stoop itself. The car parking at the ground is for Debenture Holders and Disable Drivers only.

For door to door driving directions from wherever you live try Google Maps, and key in TW2 7SX as your destination.

By Air: The closest airport is London Heathrow. From Heathrow you can get a cab (about 25 mins, £15-£20) or more cheaply get take the Shuttle-Bus to Feltham Station, which is two stops from Twickenham.

London Gatwick and London Stansted are a good deal further, and you'd want to travel to Twickenham by rail - use the site above to check the connections to Twickenham Station

By Helicopter: Harlequins Rugby Club is the only landing site within the Twickenham/Richmond area, further details

Where to sit

There is a plan of the Stadium here on the official site

Your best options are the Etihad (east) Stand or the newer LV (west) Stand, they are both covered and run the length of the pitch.

The Etihad and LV Stands are long - blocks AA & AJ (Etihad) and FA & FJ (LV) reach out beyond the try-line but are still OK seats - especially higher up. Prices vary, being more expensive nearer the centre of course. The Eithad Stand contains the main public bar whereas the LV Stand contains the smaller Members' Clubhouse so if you are likely to need regular liquid refreshment and you're not a member then the Etihad is probably the stand for you.

Warning: Avoid the first four rows A-D, sold as 'restricted view'. The Etihad Stand is separated from the pitch by a walkway, and the low seats are suffer from people walking in front of you fetching beers and so on, the problem isn't as bad in the west because the walkway is much more narrow and the gates by the tunnel are closed for parts of the game.

The North & South Stands. Are behind the goal and covered. Entry is from beneath the stand so you won't get people walking in front of you and blocking your view.

If you have young children then there is the Mighty Quins Village (also see below). The MQV is in the south-west corner so seats in the South Stand are probably best.

How to buy tickets

You can order tickets online with an excellent system that allows you to view a plan and select your own seats. If you prefer human contact see the Official Site for contact details for the ticket office

The ticket collection point is a portacabin by the turnstyles in the south-east corner of the ground.

For Children

Quins invest very heavily in making the Stoop a family friendly place.

Mighty Quins Village A marquee with bouncy castle, face paints, entertainers, art materials and supervisors who play with the kids. This place is fantastic and easily entertains a small child for half the game. It's open from about 1pm until about 10 mins before the end of the game.

Wheelchair Access

Access at the Stoop is excellent - the Etihad (east) stand bar has level access to the front and rear so nipping out for a burger is not a problem.

There is disabled parking behind the Etihad stand but get there early as the spaces fill up pretty quick.

There are wheelchair spaces in the Etihad stand but be warned you will probably have people walking around in front of you. The LV (west) Stand has a wheelchair platform at a high level towards the north end of the stand, access is by lift at the back of the stand.

There are two disabled toilets in the Etihad and LV stands.

All in all, the wheelies at Quins will tell you that the facilities at the Stoop are second only to Twickenham in terms of facilities for the disabled user in Europe.

Drinking

The East Stand bar beneath the stand runs the length of the Stand and is one of the nicest bars you'll find in any club. Before the game there are TVs that show the live match on Sky, and occasionally video of last week's Quins game. After the game there is a live band. At the left end of the main bar (as you face it) you'll find the four-pint jug always a great offer.

The Quins' Head - There is the Premiership's only real ale bar behind the South Stand where you can get hand pulled IPA, Abbott and guest ales every game. There aren't any other drinks sold here so you'll have to buy other drinks from the other bars.

Smoking

There is no smoking in the stands or walkways, but the decking area outside the Quins' Head is a designated smoking area, otherwise you'll have to go out of the ground to smoke.

Eating

There are various outlets around the ground and there is also a food bar in the Members' Bar serving pies, pizza etc. If you want a proper meal and there's a group of 10 or more you can always book the Carvery.

There is also a fantastic saugage stand in the car park behind the North Stand (outside the ground) called the Jolly Sausage Company which is run by Olly Kohn and his brother that provides fantastic food.

Tea & Coffee

All the food stands sell the regular tea/coffee, but this season there are also are a couple of coffee stalls in the ground this season selling espresso and Cappuccino (and every variation thereof...).

After the game

There is a live band in the East Stand bar after a game: wear your dancing shoes!

Where to Stay

If you are staying over, here's three convenient and quite different suggestions

  • Premier Lodge - well known chain of motel-style hotels.. Inexpensive, on the A316 about 10 mins walk down the busy road from the Stoop. (on the website it's listed under Twickenham)
  • Pope's Grotto A very nice Youngs pub-hotel in Twickenham, right next to the river, and overlooking a small park. Recommended. About 20 minutes walk
  • very close to the Stoop indeed, is the Bremic Guest House offering B&B accommodation (if you stay here please let us know what it's like)

Alternatively, you could also stay in Richmond which is nearby and has many hotels. Richmond is 5 mins on the train or 30 minutes beautiful walk along the river.

Meeting Up

Before the game, look out for the Quinssa table in the East Stand Bar.

Anything Else?

The Stoop changed its name from The Stoop Memorial Ground to The Twickenham Stoop Stadium in the 2005/6 season, details of the press conference can be found here.

Post your questions - or suggestions for this page - one the message boards using the handy box below.

Thanks for the additional notes/suggestions from regulars - especially RobShew.

Come on You Quins!

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Guide to the Stoop
ComeAllWithin.co.uk (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 11:50
What do you think? You can have your say by posting below.
If you do not already have an account Click here to Register.

 
Guide to The Stoop
The Prof (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 11:51
I've just updated this - does anyone have any more suggestions/changes/additions?

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Ralph (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 12:11
Glad to see you've included details of the Helipad!

For what it's worth The Pope's Grotto is en route to being renamed The Alexander this month (though signs are already up....). God only knows why they feel the need to change the name but there you go....

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
JTD (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 12:20
Quote:
Ralph
Glad to see you've included details of the Helipad!
For what it's worth The Pope's Grotto is en route to being renamed The Alexander this month (though signs are already up....). God only knows why they feel the need to change the name but there you go....

How strange! Are they going to re-name the surrounding streets too? Alexander Grove etc???

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
claire_m (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 12:21
It's only semantics / pedantry, but the Quins head does sell non-alcoholic drinks.

You also haven't mentioned the Baileys hot chocolate / coffee man, who is a particular favourite in the winter!

I wonder if we could get the club to do mulled wine in the winter? I do bring my own, but it would be easier if I didn't have to!!!

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Boonie (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 13:59
Is the Helipad in use on match days?

"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to bleat about it all over the internet"

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Ralph (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 14:10
Try booking it and then let us know.... (Sm14)

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
GrubbyQuin (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 14:29
Try using it and we'll let you know.

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
raedarius (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 16:10
Perhaps mention that the North and South Stands have much more generous leg-room than the Etihad stand.

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
UQ (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 16:45
Good to see you've kept the photo of the old Members Stand. Sweet Memories.(Sm125)

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
AndyH (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 18:49
Hi Prof

Just to say the link to A life in a day does not work (Sm77)

Also I think you should remove the Pic of The Old West Stand – those posts are totally naked from the waist down (Sm135)

See you next season

Andy

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Quinten Poulsen (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 19:59
Quote:
Are they going to re-name the surrounding streets too? Alexander Grove etc???

He's done really well at 13 for Worcester this season, but I don't see why they should be naming streets in Strawberry Hill after him. winking smiley

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
kevin (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 20:31
Have you warned that the gates will be shut until the players return to the dressing room after the final whistle, if some get their way?

Pictures should be 'before' and 'after'?

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Tigergeezer (IP Logged)
12/05/2009 20:41
Will you be having that most excellent beet tent at all matches next season?

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Angostura (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 12:06
Tigergeezer,
I don't see why we wouldn't. We've had it at every game since it was put up and it's always busy. Not only does it appease the ale lovers and provide a smoking den but it eases some of the pressures on the other bars too.

RESPECT THE REF - NO REF, NO GAME!

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Ralph (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 12:09
That's a good point about the players tunnel gates kevin....

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Babs (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 13:11
I think you'll find kevin means the stadium gates so no-one can leave until the game is over.
Of course, I'd go the whole hog and have safety harnesses (like they have on the more dangerous rides at theme parks) that come down over your seat and are only released after the boys have left the pitch!(Sm156)

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Ralph (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 13:16
Good idea Babs. It has been a bit of a rollercoaster....

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
AlecW (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 14:19
From the LI perspective, last Saturday reminded me what a cracking ground the Stoop is - plenty of space, good view, great atmos, great bars/booze, plenty of loos and a friendly welcome (and I don't mean just the result...!)...

Dancing girls not bad either! The blonde sat in front of what was probably Etihad AH for most of the game was not exactly hard on the eye!

Cheers

Alec from LI

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
GrahamJ (IP Logged)
13/05/2009 14:31
Could I suggest that a change to the date of the article at the top might help.

I have always thought Dec 27th was very sad anyway and it certainly is not 2005!!!!

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
WynQuin (IP Logged)
15/05/2009 13:40
Think Youngs have compromised and changed the name to "The Alexander Pope" - but still no grotto.

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Phil. (IP Logged)
19/05/2009 08:26
Prof,

I've compiled a travel guide for the Saintly peeps travelling down on Friday. Many thanks for permission to use information contained in this article in my piece (there's acknowledgement and a link at the bottom). Is there anything I've missed out?

ECC Final - The Essential Travel Guide

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
Phil. (IP Logged)
20/05/2009 00:04
Quote:
Phil.
Is there anything I've missed out?

obviously not! (Sm12)

 
Re: Guide to the Stoop
The Prof (IP Logged)
20/05/2009 01:33
Hi Phil. it looks good to me - best of luck in the game

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