Watford

Watford

Stadium Information

Stadium

Vicarage Road

Address

Vicarage Road Stadium
Vicarage Road
Watford
WD18 0ER

Club / stadium contact for disabled supporters

Name

Jo Simonds

Telephone no.

01923 223023

Disabled Supporters Association

Name

David Butler

Telephone

01923 265577

Email

watfordfcenables@gmail.com

Website address

 

 

Accessibility Information

For UK minimum access standards for new and existing stadia and for good practice guidance please click here.

 

Getting There & Parking

 

There is a club car park with 23 accessible parking spaces for home and away supporters available on a seasonal basis or first come first served basis. Away supporters must reserve with Jo Simonds. Drop of facilities are available.

 

National Rail have published links to the nearest stations to sporting venues including Watford see here for more information.

 

Level Playing Field have not verified the information given and we suggest that you contact the station direct if you have any access requirements.

Getting a Ticket

 

For information on purchasing a ticket please visit the Watford website.

Spectator Viewing areas

 

Home supporters have 46 spaces for wheelchair users available to them, and these can be found at pitchside and on raised platforms around the ground. 8 spaces for wheelchair users can be found on a raised platform in the away section for away supporters. Supporters with ambulant disabilities can sit to suit specific requirements.

 

NB: Under existing minimum standards for accessible stadia, the club should have 153 wheelchair spaces (130 home and up to 23 away). 75% of these should be elevated positions and the remaining 25% pitchside.

 

LPF's view is that many disabled supporters should be able to access general seating areas and only those with specific needs eg those who require extra legroom, or access via aisle seats or who need step free access etc should be allocated seats in the dedicated areas.

 

Based on the above, the club therefore only meets 35% of the guidance and has a shortfall of 99 wheelchair spaces. They should be working on a plan to rectify this deficit within a reasonable timeframe under the auspices of a full independent Access Audit.

Accessible amenities

 

Both home and away fans can use the 8 accessible toilets inside the stadium, located near the accessible seating areas. The club shop is accessible for all fans and does have a low level serving counter. Catering kiosks in the home sections only do have low level serving counters and so are fully accessible.

Accessible services & information

 

The club does have a hearing loop bin the ticket office. Soccer Sight match commentaries by the local hospital radio are available request via the DLO at the club, headsets will be delivered and collected by stewards. Facilities for assistance dogs are available via request to the DLO at the club. The concourses do not have rest areas included.

 

Updated October 2013.

Club Additional Information

 

Watford FC also provides Wheelchair facilities on the official coach travel to away games

DSA Additional Information

 

Enables Disabled Supporter Group- Enables is the supporter group for people with disabilities at Watford Football Club. 
 
WFC Enables was established in March 2007 by a group of enthusiastic Watford supporters and Watford FC staff to provide a voice for disabled supporters.
 
The group provides a platform for regular dialogue with the Club relating to the stadium development and the improvements to facilities for the disabled and also creates a social forum for supporters to enjoy meeting and talking about what drives them on - Watford FC!
 

Membership of WFC Enables is free.

Comments about Watford:

 

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Comments

Anonymous

Match: Everton

Published: 12/4/2016

 

The away wheelchair supporters are now located pitchside at Vicarage Road, in the very far corner of Sir Elton John stand. We were not in with the rest of the away supporters, which is always a disapointment. As far as I was aware there was no way of gaining any access to the Vicarage Road stand either, so meeting up with friends was impossible.

 

There were no actual wheelchair bays/markings set out, so I was told to sit next to the other two disabled supporters that were in the ground by the time I arrived. Companions had no seats by us, they were sat a good couple of yards further behind us, not near enough to talk to during the game or to offer assistance to any one who may have needed it. Also, their view from the seats they had wasn't great and they had to stand up for large parts of the game to be able to see the pitch. A steward told us that once the game kicked off we could move our wheelchairs forward to be against the advertising boardings if it would help us see.

This had to be done as if we had stayed further back our view would have been obstructed by the photographers who were sat to our left. The view from here was ok, although I found it a bit hard seeing play in the corner of the Sir Elton John Stand. There was no cover from having to sit so far forward, so you would get very wet sitting there if it rains.  

 

During the first half there were 5 wheelchair users sitting pitchside, however, during the half time interval another 2 wheelchair supporters were moved here as they'd spent the first half sitting in the wrong part of the stadium. This made it extremely cramped. One of the wheelchair users who had been sitting next to me during the first half ended up sitting behind me for the second half as he lost his "space" whilst going to the toilet at half time. He tried to sit a little further down the Sir Elton John stand by the photographers but was told he couldn't so the only place he could go was behind me. 

 

The accessible toilets were in the Sir Elton John stand, I was taking to them by a steward, they were accessed by a RADAR key, very spacious and clean.


The other issue that I found disappointing was the access to and particularly from the ground. Stewards escorted you in and down the touchline, past the dugouts to the corner. We were told that we couldn't leave before the end of the game as we wouldn't be allowed to go back past the dugouts whilst the game was on. When the game ended, we were then told we couldn't leave for another 10 minutes to allow the Watford crowd to dispearse and the area around the dugout to clear. Fortunately for Saturday's game we didn't need to rush as our train was after 6pm but if we had been travelling back on an earlier train this hold up could have caused problems and if we had have been travelling back home on the coaches we would have been really late getting to them as not only did we have to wait behind for these 10 minutes, the walk back up the path way to Vicarage Road also took at least 10 minutes and if we had been on the coach we would have had to get back around to the away end. 

To summarise my Vicarage Road trip, the access/egress is quite poor, not having my companion sitting near to me was disappointing as was not being in the same stand as the rest of the away supporters but the stewarding was excellent. All of the stewards who I spoke to were helpful and friendly. 

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Chris Smith

Match: Watford v Everton 09/04/2016

Published: 11/4/2016

 

My first trip back to Watford since early 2000's. Much has changed to the ground since then. 

 

We arrived at Watford Junction around 1pm and got a cab to the ground. We decided to have a walk around the ground but a disabled liason officer approached us and advised us that one part of the ground is blocked off so we'd be best going straight in. Fair enough and we were duly escorted by this chap down the back of the Sir Elton John Stand and through the gates of Rockerry Stand to gain access into the stadium.

 

Once inside we were further escorted along the front of the Sir EJ Stand, past the dug outs and taken to a concourse area that served snacks, TV screens and shown the accessible toilet. We were met by another disabled liason steward who gave us a quick run-down on things. The stewarding by both was excellent. Really polite and helpful people who were all too happy to help out.

 

The wheelchair area for away fans is located by the corner flag of the Sir EJ Stand and right by the away fans. Space is at a premium it has to be said and there are no marked out bays. Companion seats are sat a yard or two behind.

 

The view, whilst at a low level, is OK, nothing more. There is no shelter from the elements so you'd get drenched should there be a heavy downpour.

 

The other disappointment is not having the option/freedom of leaving the ground early. This was frustrating especially having to wait until the crowd around us dispersed after the game. Not great when you have a coach waiting or a train to catch. The walk back up the path of the Sir EJ Stand took an age too.

 

To summarise: The Stewarding is excellent but the disabled seating arrangements and access in and out of the ground are both poor. I am unsure if anything can be done to gain more effective/easier access into the ground. I really hate the idea of having to be held back at the final whistle and go on trek around the ground just to get back to the top of Vicarage Road.

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Anthony Joy

Match: Watford vs Arsenal, 17/10/15

Published: 25/10/2015

 

The notion of having a "2nd team" is rubbish, but Having moved to just outside Watford some 12 years ago, I have to confess that I do follow their results and their promotion to the premier league brought a trip back to Vicarage Road for the first time in 8 years.

 

Any disabled away fan at the Vic will be familiar with the tiny little hut, raised up in the corner.  Well the extensive refurb of the stadium has seen that hut demolished (not before time), and while Watford rebuild a wheelchair platform there is a temporary arrangement to place wheelchairs (x5) at pitch side, behind the corner flag between the Vicarage Road and Sir Elton John stands. The view is good, and you are right next to your fans. The tickets are only ¬£5 each. The downside is your companions have no where to sit, you're open to the elements, and to access the stadium you need to enter via the Watford end and be escorted along the touchline to the area.

 

Due to some unheard of Premier League rule that says you cannot cross the tunnel area 30mins before kick off Watford asked us to enter at 1630 ( for a 1730 ko). Seemed harsh to us.

 

Toilets were at the other end of the ground, in with the Watford fans. Watford did offer a waiter service at halftime for hot drinks.  Apparently to obtain a beer you could access the SEJ stand.

 

When you arrive at Vicarage Road, look for the Roadies in the green top who will escort you to the entrance through the crowds. They were a great help.

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Stephen

Match: Watford v Charlton

Published: 26/9/2013

 

Attended match as an away supporter on September 14th but ended up missing the first minute due to the fact that we got there and the police were a little bit busy  because of the crowds.  But to be fair to them they did let us in when all the traffic had dispersed. 

 

I didn't mind as I went with a friend of mine who is a home supporter anyway. Their ground is ok,  it is decent.  

 

The only thing I would say in their defence is in some of the disabled section in the away end they have a restrictred view but that is no fault of the club. Very decent home supporters and I wouldn't hesitate asking Charlton if I could go again.

 

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Ray Parry and Barbara Merrell

Match: versus Leicester City 10/02/2010

Published: 26/10/2012

 

We only found out their was 6 away spaces available to away fans in the Rookery Lane end after we complained to the steward that we could only see one third of the pitch as we took up our allocated space (no:10) in the Vicarage Road end wheelchair access area on our arrival at the ground.

The wheelchair spaces are marked out and the first 8 are allocated to the Watford disabled season tickets fans. Spaces 8 to 16 are allocated to the disabled away fans. Unfortunately the view is severely restricted from space 8 onwards. The goal on your right is not in your sight line the same for the corner flag at the far end to my left.

The Watford fans explained they did not like to sit in the new Rookery Lane end as the overview at pitch level was not as good as the elevated one at Vicarage Road end.

We have been travelling away fans with the LCFC for some 15 years and this was the most disappointing trip we have made to Vicarage Road ground.

I was asked to pay £27 for the ticket, my carer is free, but is not allocated a seat and is expected to sit at the back of the accessible area, where they would have not been able to see any of the match. I am asked to pay the same price as any other adult paying away fan, who would have been able to see the whole playing surface as it stretched out in front of them. If I had stayed in my allocated space, number 10, I would only have been able to view one third of the pitch.

I am now aware of the other allocated spaces and will be asking for one of these in the future. Unfortunately, this means I will not be able to sit with the other travelling LCFC fans, but as my priority is to watch the team perform I will have to sacrifice my pleasure in being part of the away travel contingency.

I would also like to say the female steward on duty on the day, was absolutely fantastic. She deserved a medal for listening to all of our moans in regard to the view we were all expected to suffer (or not have). The Watford disabled members who fetched our drinks at half time, also listened to our complaints with empathy.

This has been an issue for some years now and we are aware of the on-going development of the Vicarage Road ground, but, please as it is now 2011, try and do something to end this discrimination towards all wheelchair users / chronically ill / ambulant fans. We should be able to have a reasonable view of the game as it is played, whether we win 3 - 2 or lose 3 - 2.

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Gary Deards

Match: Watford v Reading 20/11/2010

Published: 26/10/2012

 

Agree totally with previous comments - try and avoid getting a seat nubers 10+ as you'll only see 2/3rds of the game

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