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NAME: Falkirk Stadium
ADDRESS: Westfield, Falkirk, FK2 9DX
CAPACITY: Approx. 6,700.
CELTIC ALLOCATION: Approx 2,000 - The Kier Homes Stand. Access from Falkirk Road.
RECORD VICTORY: Celtic 8, Falkirk 1, 21 September 2004
RECORD DEFEAT: Falkirk 6, Celtic 2, 14 April 1965
BY CAR: Coming from Glasgow, follow signs for the Kincardine Bridge onto the M9. Then take Junction 6 of the M9 Eastbound and turn right towards Grangemouth. Follow the signs for Falkirk A9 off the roundabout and the stadium will be on the your left side.
BY BUS: I believe the 37 goes from Glasgow Buchanan Street to Bo'Ness and passes by the stadium as well as Falkirk bus station before it.
BY TRAIN: Falkirk High and Falkirk Grahamston are both 2 miles from the stadium - Falkirk High is a stop on the main Glasgow Queen Street to Edinburgh line. Unfortunately, both are the wrong side of Falkirk town!
PARKING: Forth Valley College (formerly Falkirk College) have a deal with them which allows their car parking facilities to be used during game time. There's also a whole lot of nothing around the stadium currently - usually coned off by the police of course. Supporters buses get to park next to the stands.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Half a stadium. The main stand and the Kier Homes Stand are both finished and there are bizarre bus stop like contraptions to make up the other two sides.
Very little in the variety of songs. You'll quickly learn that Falkirk are blue, white, and somewhat dynamite. You'll then be retold this until you're bored.
Three points. In 2005/06, Falkirk were into the split before they finally got a home win! Oddly, while much of the top six could only draw there, Celtic won in their only game there.
Frostbite. This is easily the coldest place to watch a game in Scotland, it's worse than Broadwood.
Falkirk were formed in 1876, and quickly adopted the nickname of the Bairns, apparently taken from an ancient Falkirk Burgh motto of "Better meddle with the devil than the Bairns of Falkirk". Funnily enough, there's no such thing as a Falkirk bairn these days, as the Maternity ward of Falkirk Royal Infirmary has been closed and all babies are now born in Stirling instead.
Falkirk played at several locations to begin with, but moved to Brockville in 1883 where they stayed for 120 years. The stadium was not up to SPL standard and in 2002/03 they played their final match there. After a season of groundsharing with nearby Stenhousemuir, they moved into the new Falkirk stadium for the 2004/05 season and gained promotion to the SPL at the end of that season. Brockville Park is now home to a Morrisons, which happily has continued with that name.
Falkirk were twice denied access to the SPL. Firstly, when the SPL expanded to 12 they should have taken part in a three way playoff with bottom club Aberdeen and 2nd placed Dunfermline, but due to the standard of Brockville this was scrapped and Aberdeen were saved, as well as Dunfermline going up. Falkirk were again denied access in 2003 when they should have come up as champions. Depsite even offering to use either Broomfield (Airdrie United's stadium) and even Murrayfield for a season while they got a new ground sorted, they were denied again.
Technically, Falkirk's stadium is still not SPL compliant! Under the rules that denied Falkirk previously, they should have had a 10,000 seater stadium. That rule was changed to 6000 after Falkirk's second rejection and Caley Thistle benefitted from this change that season as they first groundshared at Aberdeen for 6 months, and then moved back to their newly upgraded stadium with its 6000 seats.
Falkirk should have been relegated prior to their their league win in 2003 when they finished 9th in 2002. However, as Airdrieonians went into liquidation and died, Falkirk were spared the relegation and went on to win the division that following season. A lucky escape!
Falkirk and Greenock Morton hold the "yo-yo" record jointly. The "yo-yo" record is so named because it marks the team that has been promoted and relegated the most - ie. they are up and down the leagues.
TIM FRIENDLY PUBS
Falkirk fans are generally quite docile and most of the pubs in the town centre won't see you get any grief. The Carron Works is a Wetherspoon's in Bank St. The Wheatsheaf in Baxter's Wynd is the mother and father of all old man pubs but has great beer. The Star Inn on Grahams Road (away from the town centre from Grahamston station) and The Magpie on Maggieswood Loan (near the hospital) are Celtic pubs, although the Star has closed its doors to non-regulars on days of popular games, so get there early if you need to watch the football.
PUBS TO AVOID
Behind The Wall. It's not a Rangers pub, it's just full of pretentious twats (like the people of Falkirk have anything to get uppity about.) Bill Leckie has been spotted here, for example
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, Jan 15 2009, 11:09 AM EST
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