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Cans & Megabus Away Guide: Everything Sunderland fans need to know about their Fleetwood trip

Kick 2020 off the only way you know how, by following Sunderland AFC to some outpost on the Fylde coast. Here’s everything you need to know about our trip to Fleetwood.

Fleetwood Town v Leicester City - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Who Are These Jobbers?

Hey, during the run-up to the totally class general election we’ve just had, did anyone catch the Fleetwood Town owner telling the club’s supporters to vote for the Tories or else? Really cool that, wasn’t it!

Essentially, on the eve of the vote, Cod Army overlord Andy Pilley provided a beautiful piece-to-camera on the club’s official website stating if the town of Fleetwood elected the Labour Party, he would cut funding from his core business BES Utilities. In his own words, Pilley explained that it was in “the best interests of Fleetwood Town Football Club that the Labour Party are not selected and that the Conservatives are elected”.

If you’d like to find out more about Big Pilley Style’s demands, you can do so here as the original tweet has mysteriously disappeared. Labour managed to win the Lancaster and Fleetwood constituency, so we can only assume Fleetwood Town will be looking for a new owner sometime soon.

Joey Barton Press Conference Photo by Nick Potts/PA Images via Getty Images

What’s The Ground Like?

One of the saving graces of watching Sunderland inevitably concede a hatful of goals at Highbury Stadium is the delightful sea chanty played after each strike. Yes, you may be freezing cold, yes Ched Evans may be taunting you, but my word, what a delightful tune they play over their antiquated PA system.

The ground itself is very in the mould of non-league football clubs that got one too many promotions. The Parkside Stand is a demonstration of Fleetwood’s recent prosperity with modern seating and executive boxes, while the opposite Highbury Stand is a remnant from the Cod Army’s non-league days.

Sunderland supporters are housed on the terraces of the Percy Ronson Stand and a small section of seating on the Parkside Stand. The acoustics are so good, you’ll be able to hear the tremendous chanty in all its glory.

Fleetwood Town v Bristol City - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Replay Photo by Dave Howarth - CameraSport via Getty Images

How Do I Get There?

Start 2020 in the best possible way by traversing the country’s road networks to the sumptuous Fylde coast. Take the A1(M) to Scotch Corner before heading west on the A66 and then the A685 to Tebay. Join the M6 before exiting at junction 33 for the A6 before taking a right onto the A586 heading towards Blackpool. Take Amounderness Way past Cleveleys, into Fleetwood before going over the roundabout onto Broadway and follow the signs for Highbury Stadium

There’s plenty of street parking around the ground and if you get lost smash FY7 6TX into your sat nav.

Fleetwood handily does not have a train station, so for those of you arriving by train, you’ll have to get a tram from Blackpool. The closest tram stop from Blackpool North station is North Pier which drops off at both at Lindel Road and Stanley Road which are within walking distance of the ground.

Where Can I Get The Sesh Started?

When you’re considered to be the poor relation of Blackpool, you know times are hard. While the majority of you will be lured away by the Vegas of the North’s promise of Irish bars where it’s “St Patrick’s Day every day of the year”, there are a handful of establishments in Fleetwood for you to whet your whistle.

The Strawberry Gardens Pub & Bistro on Poulton Road is the self-declared away fans pub and is only a short walk from Highbury. Stocked with an extensive food and drink menu, it promises “banter with the locals” which makes it “one of the best pubs on the Fylde Coast”. A little further down Poulton Road, you’ll find the The Queens, a Thwaites pub within easy reach of the ground.

For those venturing into Fleetwood, hop off at London Street stop you’ll find an array of pubs including The Thomas Drummond (your Brexit-friendly Wetherspoons), The Kings Arms and The Wyre Light. However, if you prefer your pub with a sea view then pop into the Mount Pub on The Esplanade.

The Strawberry Gardens
Photo credit: World Travel Blog

Is There Anything Good To Do Around Here?

Those utter legends that decided that New Year’s Eve in Blackpool was definitely a good idea can allow their hangover to dissipate by exploring the sights of Fleetwood. Climb to the top of Rossall Tower and let the Fylde Coast blast away the grogginess as you gaze across Morecambe Bay and the Irish Sea.

Why not fill your head with the history of Fleetwood? Visit Fleetwood Museum and you can learn all about how this Victorian new town blossomed into a holiday resort and then de-blossomed into the fishing port you see today.

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