By Paul Donegan
I have been to Meadow Park 4 times so far during the 2021/22 season (Slavia Prague, Manchester City, Hoffenheim and West Ham United matches) so this ground guide is based on things from those. Of course things might be different if you decide to visit Meadow Park.
Broughinge Rd, Borehamwood WD6 5AL
Location and Ground History
Borehamwood is in Hertfordshire, just north of London, close to the A1 and M25 roads. Borehamwood and close by Elstree are probably most famous for its TV and film studios. Meadow Park opened in 1963 as Boreham Wood’s new ground. Arsenal Women have been playing there permanently since about 1992 and the men’s under 23s also play some of their matches at Meadow Park. The stadium is now sponsored but due to the nature of the sponsorship, it is going to carry on being known as Meadow Park by me.
The ground is about a 15 minute walk away along the main road (Shenley Road) from Elstree and Borehamwood station which is served by Thameslink trains going north to St Albans and Luton and south into London (St Pancras and Blackfriars) and then down to Kent and south London. Oyster cards etc can be used to Elstree and Borehamwood.
A number of buses (TfL buses 107 and 292 plus others) pass near the ground with the closest stop being Elstree Studios. There is a car park at the ground (Brook Road car park, which is behind the south end) but this does get full really early before matches and also some spaces are taken up by TV trucks if the match is being shown live. From what I can see it is a pay and display car park Monday to Saturday, 8am-6:30pm but might be worth double checking in case this has changed. If this is full, it would have to be street parking or finding another car park.
It is cheaper to buy tickets beforehand as the price does increase for adults from £8 (plus £1.65 booking fee) to £12 if you buy on the day, if available. There is a ticket kiosk open on matchdays near the turnstiles in the north east corner so if going from the car park, you need to walk around the ground or through the park. The tickets come as an attachment on the confirmation email and can be printed off or shown on a phone and are then scanned by someone at the turnstiles. When booking tickets online, you can choose if want you reserved seating in the east stand or a ticket which covers the rest the ground.
There are turnstiles at the south end of the ground, with a path leading up from the car park, and another set in the north east corner. The ground capacity is 4,500 with 1,700 seats. The main stand and dugouts are on the east side of the ground with the covered seated stand (reserved seating only + VIPs) covering about half the length of the pitch. To the north side of it is some uncovered terracing whilst to the south are the dressing rooms and this side is not open to the public. In the south east corner, there is a scoreboard showing the score and time. At the south end there is uncovered terracing which breaks in the middle for the food/drink kiosk and turnstiles. The west side has a covered seated stand running the whole length of the pitch with the press in the middle of it and the TV camera position on top. The north end has a covered terrace which runs the widith of the pitch. There are toilet blocks at either end of the west stand though I have seen lengthy queues for the women’s toilets near the north end. There haven’t been any bag searches this season even though there used to be.
Food and Drink
There are two food kiosks (called The Lunch Box) inside the ground, one at the south end by the turnstiles and the other in the north east corner by the turnstiles and club shop. When I have been buying food/drink, I have paid by card. Outside of the ground, there are numerous pubs, restaurants, cafes etc, along the Shenley Road and there is also a McDonalds and Tesco a couple of minutes walk away.
There is a club shop in the north east corner of the ground where you can buy various bits of Arsenal merchandise along with paper programmes. Again, I have paid by card when buying programmes. There can be a few queues in this part of the ground with the club shop and tea bar so make sure you join the right one. Gunnersaurus used to be a regular sight at the women’s matches but hasn’t been seen this season at the matches I have been to at Meadow Park.