January 31, 2017
It’s fair to say Worcester fans were kept waiting before the club finally made its arrival into the top flight of English club rugby. The Warriors made their Premiership debut in 2004 – a mere 133 years after the club were first founded. Major investment throughout the 1990s saw Worcester ascend through the ranks of club rugby union, having previously plied their trade in the regional leagues.
Worcester have played at various venues over the years, but Sixways has been their home since 1975. A compact, lively, traditional rugby stadium, Sixways is a great place to watch the rugger. Thinking of heading over to catch a game this season? Then don’t do anything until you’ve read our in-depth guide.
Sixways is currently the subject of an ambitious redevelopment plan. Its current capacity is 12,024, but that’s expected to increase to 13,200 once the reconstruction work that’s planned has been fully completed. There are four stands at Sixways – the Slick Systems (East) Stand, the West Stand, the Fragrance Mad (North) Stand and the South Stand.
The Slick Systems Stand – redeveloped in 2008 – is the largest at Sixways, with a capacity of 6,000. It’s an all-seater stand, which houses a bar, hospitality boxes, the club store and a restaurant as well as a number of other food outlets. It runs along the length of the pitch, as does the West Stand opposite to it. The West Stand is mostly comprised of seating, but there’s an uncovered standing area popular among regular Worcester match-goers.
Behind the two goal posts are the Fragrance Mad and South Stands. Families and newcomers often tend to be concentrated in the Fragrance Mad Stand, as it’s where many of the club’s family season tickets are located and it also tends to be among the cheaper areas of the ground. The South Stand is also all-seater, but tends to be more raucous.
Getting to Sixways
Sixways enjoys excellent transport links. Here’s how to reach it.
The stadium is located very close to junction 6 of the M5 motorway. Exit the motorway there and take the A4538 towards Droitwich, and you should see the stadium immediately on your left-hand side. However, be aware that there’s no matchday parking at the ground except for permit holders. The surrounding roads are also subject to a controlled parking scheme, so make sure you don’t park in a prohibited area – or else there’ll be a ticket coming your way.
There are, however, two park and ride schemes in operation. There’s one at Blackpole, just off the A449 towards Kidderminster near junction 6 of the M5. The other is at County Hall along the A4440, just off junction 7 of the M5. Parking at both is free of charge, but you will have to pay to take the bus. Just follow the signs for ‘Worcester Rugby – Park and Ride’ to find the car parks.
Alternatively, there’s a car park within 15-25 minutes’ walk of the ground close to junction 6. Take the A4440, then the third exit at the first roundabout on to Wainwright Road and follow the ‘Worcester Rugby – Park and Walk’ signs. There will be signs marking out the designated route to the stadium, but the path can be muddy and slippery depending on the weather, so take care.
Rugby Special buses run from Worcester Crowngate bus station. Services run from two hours before the game and from up to 90 minutes afterwards.
Worcester has two railway stations – Foregate Street, in the city centre, and Shrub Hill close to the main shopping district. The two destinations directly connect Worcester with destinations including London, Birmingham, Bristol, Reading, Hereford and Oxford. Of the two stations in Worcester, Foregate Street is the handiest for the local pubs and the Crowngate bus station.
The airport closest to Worcester is Birmingham, about 30 miles away. There are no direct rail services from the airport, so you’ll need to take a train to New Street and from there catch a connecting service to Worcester. The journey should take you less than an hour and a half in total.
Around the ground
Eating and Drinking
There are plenty of options for food and drink in and around Sixways. Here are some we’d suggest checking out.
Pubs and restaurants near Sixways
The Imperial Tavern – Black Country Ales first venture into the heart of Worcester, this cosy pub offers 10 great beers on tap as well as a variety of snacks. Come in, sit back and relax after the game next one of the open fires.
King Charles II – Brimming with history, this building has been around since 1577 and has been recently updated to represent its traditional style, with the addition of quality ales and award winning pies that King Charles II would have been proud of.
The Barn Owl – Boasting a number of classic Marston’s beers and a massive variety of food the Barn Owl really ticks all the boxes. With a massive family friendly beer garden for those long summer days and two for one offers on all meals, you’re sure to feel comfortable here after an afternoon of rugby.
The Pheasant – As well as serving real ales, craft beers & gourmet burgers, the Pheasant also shows all major sporting events. This pub is a favourite amongst rugby fans and players alike.
Eating and drinking inside Sixways
- Away fans generally drink at the corner of the Fragrance Mad and West stands, where a variety of ales, lagers and ciders are available.
- The Coliseum Bar, next to the Scrum Club in the West Stand, serves a variety of real ales and also offers post-match entertainment.
- There are several bars in the East Stand.
Places to stay
There’s no shortage of choice when it comes to accommodation in Worcester, from big chain hotels to family-run B&Bs. Near to the M5 and the stadium is a Premier Inn. There’s a Travelodge opposite the cathedral, while the Fownes Hotel is nearby. Other local options include the Whitehouse Hotel near Foregate Street railway station and the Diglis House Hotel on the waterfront just south of the city centre.
Other local attractions
Worcester is a historic and charming city very popular with tourists. Worcester Cathedral, which looms large over the River Severn, is a must-see for anyone visiting the city. Local museums include Elgar’s Birthplace and the Museum of Royal Worcester. And if you fancy a day at the races (not to mention a flutter on the gee-gees) then Worcester Racecourse is also well worth a trip.