How Do I Get There?
It’s pretty bloody simple really. You can get a direct train straight to Carlisle from Sunderland central or Newcastle central - but Newcastle is an hour quicker is some cases and a whole load more regular, with one every half hour. From there you can walk about a mile from Carlisle Citadel Railway Station. Upon exiting the station's main entrance, walk the short distance around the Crescent until reaching Warwick Road where you’ll see the main stand.
If you’re taking one for the team though and being the designated driver, leave the M6 at junction 43 and take the A69 towards Carlisle. After a mile you will reach the ground on your right. The club car park, which costs £2.50, can be found by turning right immediately before Brunton Park (it is well advertised). Otherwise there’s always street parking. I wouldn’t have any Sunderland related stuff on your car, though...
Where Can I Get The Sesh Started?
On the train man or in the car! Get a big bag of cans with the lads from the off license after your early finish from work and get lubricated before reaching Cumbria. My personal favourite is Warsteiner right now if you’re wondering; but don’t let my opinion sway you. Guinness will also do the job. Just grab a can and sing about Aiden McGeady and do your best Whigfield impression.
Once you’re in the cultural hub of Cumbria, you can venture to a few different pubs - although many will be closed to away fans. The Beehive on Warwick Road is probably the best, but it’s unknown if they’re allowing away fans in for this one - they do employ doorman so it’s 50/50. Those of us who went to Carlisle in the 90’s FA Cup ties will remember exactly why some drinking establishments may not want fans mixing. Your best bet is probably to head to The Carlisle Rugby Club or Lakeland pub, both of which are pretty family friendly and allow away fans in.
I’m Staying Owa, Is There Owt To Do?
I imagine this won’t apply to many as it’s possible to get a train straight back after the match - and that’s probably the best option to be honest.
If you’re planning on staying though and managed to convince your jobsworth manager to give you a well deserved day off from your headset, the Carlisle Cathedral is alright to look at for a bit. Joetta2017 of TripAdvisor fame comments “It is definitely worth a visit to see the renowned blue ceiling in the nave, as well as the exquisite and intricate wood carving decorations”. Fancy.
What’s The Ground Like?
Brunton Park is pretty big for a League Two ground, with a capacity of almost 18,000. It’s not the Emirates, but how many of us actually miss the Premier League when you’ve got throwback away days like this? Exactly. You can shove your Premier League arenas up your arse, because this is where real away day memories are made.
We’ll be housed in the Pioneer Stand and will be backed by a solid - and also probably slightly inebriated - away following. At the time of writing there’s only 100 or so tickets left, so it’ll likely be a sold out away end in an old-fashioned ground, full of the smell of stale alcohol and die hard Lads’ Fans - why the hell would you want to be anywhere else?