Hive a good feeling about this…

Close your eyes for a moment and you can imagine Parker off of Thunderbirds saying that…

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The first thing that came to mind though, on planning the journey for Tuesday night was… where exactly is the Hive Stadium? Where is Barnet? Is it in Edgeware?

Ah there it is…

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Sort of between Watford and Enfield and looking like a bit more than north London.

How to get to the home of Barnet FC by road, rail and bus

This is the bit that applies to me and any other Shots fans going to Barnet by train.

Canons Park Underground Station on the Jubilee Line is a 5 minute walk from The Hive.

Turn left out of the station on Whitchurch Lane and after 200 feet the pedestrian entrance to The Hive will be on your right.

Queensbury Underground Station, also on the Jubilee Line, is a 10 minute walk from The Hive.

Turn left out of the station on to Turner Road. Walk to the end of the road, turn right and the entrance to The Hive will be across the road.

Edgware Underground Station on the Northern Line is about a one mile walk to The Hive.

The latest news is that Barnet are not opening the stand that would have seen us ‘amass’ behind the goal:

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THE HIVE STADIUM

Capacity: 6,500 (Seats 5,356)
Address: Camrose Avenue, Edgware, HA8 6AG
Telephone: 020 8381 3800
Pitch Size: 102m x 65.5m
Pitch Type: Grass
Club Nickname: Bees
Year Ground Opened: 2013
Undersoil Heating: No

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The Hive Stadium was opened in July 2013 and is located in a pleasant setting, within a sizeable park/playing fields area, that also has a London Underground line running behind one side of the ground on a raised embankment. If walking down through the park towards the stadium from the direction of Canons Park Station, then you can also see the Arch over Wembley Stadium in the distance.

The stadium has seen some investment recently with the building of a new stand at the North End of the ground. Replacing a small terrace, the Stand ’66 as it is now called was constructed in only four months during the Summer of 2016.

The stand is covered, all seated and is of a good size, having a capacity of 1,922. Pleasingly it is of the same height as the Main Stand and has a very similar design. This end is given to away fans. The Main or Legends Stand as it is now known, on the West side of the stadium, is like Stand ’66, single tiered and covered. It does though have a larger all seated capacity of  2,684 fans. On the opposite side is the Hive Stand, which incorporates the Bumble’s Family Area.

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This is currently a rather plain looking affair, as essentially it is an office building that has had its roof extended outwards towards the pitch, and then had six rows of seats installed in front of it, leaving a large back wall exposed of the office building. Oddly the roof doesn’t extend the whole length of the stand, meaning that some of these seats are uncovered. This area has 750 seats, some of which (in the wing area) are not under cover.

Both sides of the stadium have small electronic scoreboards mounted at the back. At the South End of the ground is the small covered Bees Terrace which is only a few rows high and has a capacity of 1,000. The Hive Stadium is completed with a set of odd-looking floodlights.

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For some odd reason, the teams emerge from near one corner of the stadium between the Stand ’66 and Hive Stands, to “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns and Roses, which is played over the rather loud public address system. Not that I am complaining, I am in fact a big fan of the former Guns and Roses lead guitarist Slash!

After spending 106 years at their old Underhill ground, the Club moved to the Hive Stadium in 2013. Originally envisioned as a site for a new ground for Wealdstone FC, Barnet were able to take over the project, when Wealdstone encountered financial difficulties. The Hive Complex which is also home to the Club’s training facility is situated in Edgware, which is just under six miles away from the site of the Underhill Stadium.

TICKET PRICES

Home Fans

Legends (Main) Stand: Adults £22, Concessions £14, Under 17’s £5

Hive Stand: Adults £22, Concessions £14, Under 17’s £5

Hive Stand (Bumble’s Family Area): Adults £15, Concessions £10, Under 17’s £1

Bees Terrace: Adults £15, Concessions £5, Under 17’s £1

Away Fans

Stand ’66: Adults £20, Concessions £13, Under 17’s £5

Concessions apply to Under 21’s and those aged 65 and over.

Record Attendance

At The Hive
6,215 v Brentford
FA Cup 4th Round, 28th January 2019.

At Underhill:
11,026 v Wycombe Wanderers
FA Amateur Cup, 23rd February 1952.

Average Attendance

2017-2018: 2,113 (League Two)
2016-2017: 2,260 (League Two)
2015-2016: 2,358 (League Two)

Away supporters are treated to their own bar within the stadium, which is located behind the North Stand. This spacious bar has a large screen showing Sky Sports. The bar is open throughout the game and for a short time after the final whistle. The only downside is that the beer is served in plastic glasses.

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There is also the Hive Bar at the stadium but this is for home fans only. The nearest pub is Moranos on Station Road, only a short walk from Canons Park Underground Station (come out of the station, turn right and it is in the row of shops further down on the right). This Irish themed wine bar is quite comfortable and has a number of large screens showing the early kick off on BT Sport. It is then only around a 10 minute walk to the away turnstiles, cutting through the playing fields (see by Tube below).

Quite close to Kingsbury Tube Station there is a Wetherspoons pub called JJ Moons (which will be familiar to many who have travelled to Wembley Stadium which is not far away). If travelling on the Jubilee Line from Central London, then Kingsbury is only two stops before Canons Park. The address of the pub is 553 Kingsbury Road. Simply turn left out of the station and the pub is down on the left.

Leave the M1 at Junction 4 and take the A41 towards Edgware. At the first roundabout take the 3rd exit onto the A410 towards Harrow and Stanmore. At the next small roundabout turn left at the Esso Garage/McDonalds towards Edgware. After passing through a set of traffic lights with the Masons Arms on one corner and then a Peugeot Garage on the left then at the next set of traffic lights turn right into Camrose Avenue. The entrance to the Hive Stadium is down this road on the right.

There is a large car park at the stadium, with 500 spaces, costing £5 per car. However with only one exit available then expect some delays after the game on leaving the car park. Otherwise, street parking, although no parking is available on Camrose Avenue itself. There are also 150 car parking spaces at Canons Park Tube Station which costs £2 all day on a Saturday. It is no more than a ten minute walk from the station to the Hive. There is also the option of renting a private driveway near in the local area via YourParkingSpace.co.uk.

REVIEW FROM VISITING SHOTS FAN, DAVID STOCKWELL

He thinks it’s nice… he says so five times…

 Barnet v Aldershot Town

National League
Tuesday 26th March 2019, 7:45pm
David Stockwell (Aldershot Town)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the Hive Stadium?

I was looking forward to the game because it was a new ground for me to visit. It was also easy for me to get to on the train from London Waterloo.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey is easy from Farnborough mainline station. On arriving in London it was then northbound on the Jubilee Tube Line to Canons Park. Finding the ground was also easy and not far from the station as well.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I had a pint in the stadium bar till our end opened. The fans were very nice and very welcoming.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the Hive Stadium?

You first see the ground on the right hand side after you go past Queensbury on the tube. The ground is situated in a nice park. It’s a nice new stadium and the facilities were very good, with a nice bar and bar area. A Barnet fan also treated me to a drink and all we did was have a good conversation.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game was very frustrating. Barnet won but we had a goal disallowed and it never should have been. This may sound bias but I am literally at a loss as to why it was. Anyway, the view from the stand is good. Decent leg room and I have to say the burger I had was very very nice and the staff were very friendly.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Nice walk through a park. No trouble at the end of the game. Again a nice chat to the fans on the tube. Easy to get out as well.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Overall the Hive Stadium is very good although it was very very empty in terms of the low attendance which is a shame. They atmosphere was lacking from the home fans. But they were very friendly and the staff were also very good. It is worth a visit.

IF YOU KNOW YOUR HISTORY…

Football in Barnet can be traced back to the formation of the original Barnet FC in 1888, with the club plying their trade in the London League until folding in 1902. Local rivals Avenue FC subsequently took over their name and their Queens Road ground before merging in 1912 with near-neighbours Barnet Alston, a works team playing in a distinctive black and amber kit. In September 1907, they established a ground at Underhill where the current club continued to play for more than a century.

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Founder members of the Athenian League, Barnet & Alston reverted to the name Barnet FC after the First World War and enjoyed moderate success, finishing outside the top half just once in the 1920s and recording a Herts Senior Cup triumph over St Albans City during the same period.

The emergence of local boy Lester Finch at outside-left coincided with consecutive Athenian League championships in 1931 and 1932, the first of which saw Barnet win all but four of their 26 matches. Finch went on to become the greatest amateur player to feature for the Bees, with an England wartime international cap alongside the likes of Eddie Hapgood, Sam Bartram and Stan Cullis testament to his ability.

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Although the Second World War curtailed competition to regional Cups, of which Barnet won more than their fair share, the resumption of the League in 1945-46 brought three major trophies to Underhill in consecutive years; two more League championships in 1947 and 1948 and a 3-2 win over amateur giants Bishop Auckland at Stamford Bridge in the 1946 FA Amateur Cup final. The Bees went on to lose to Leytonstone in the final of the same competition two years later. Barnet were also featured in the BBC’s first ever ‘live’ televised game in October 1946 against Wealdstone and became the first English club to play Hong Kong opposition, beating the League winners 5-3 the following year.

Barnet became founder members of the Alliance Premier League (later re-named the Conference) in 1979-80 but, despite new manager Barry Fry’s attempts to rebuild the team, the Bees flirted with relegation almost constantly during the early part of the 1980s.

Saved from receivership, the club persuaded Fry to return to the Bees from rivals Maidstone for what proved to be a tumultuous 10 years at Underhill. After finishing runners-up three out of the previous four seasons, Fry finally led Barnet to the Football League after a dramatic 4-2 win at Fisher Athletic in their final game of the season.

The Bees’ maiden Football League season began with an extraordinary 7-4 home defeat to Crewe Alexandra and ended in play-off heartache, losing to Blackpool over two games that Barnet dominated. Promotion to the third tier was achieved the following season but, following off-field turmoil in which the club escaped expulsion and lost virtually the whole playing staff, new manager Gary Phillips was unable to prevent the inevitable relegation back to the lower level.

Under Ray Clemence and John Still, the Bees quietly established themselves in the fourth tier, twice making the play-offs, before being relegated to the Conference in May 2001 following a dramatic 3-2 home defeat at the hands of Torquay, who saved themselves in the process. It took Barnet four years to reclaim their Football League place as, following play-off misery at Shrewsbury in 2004, they secured the title at a canter in Paul Fairclough’s first full season as manager.

Firmly established back in League Two, and with two consecutive FA Cup fourth round appearances enhancing the Bees’ reputation, Fairclough’s continuing success at developing raw talent, often plucked from non-league, for the black-and-amber cause gave Barnet’s small but vociferous fan base optimism for future on-field success.

The 2008-09 season started poorly for the club and it wasn’t until late September that the team recorded its first victory in any competition. Manager Fairclough subsequently brought forward his announcement to step aside and become a club director with special responsibility for a training ground complex that would help develop young players. Ian Hendon subsequently took charge of the first team and successfully steered the club comfortably away from fears of relegation.

In 2009-10 Barnet at one stage deservedly topped the League Two table but, after a series of poor results, League status was only guaranteed on the last day of the season under reinstalled caretaker boss Fairclough. This season also saw the launch of The Hive, a state of the art training facility, which was opened by England manager Fabio Capello.

After a busy close season in which many new faces were brought to the club hopes were high under Stimson at the start of the 2010-11 campaign. However, serious long term-injuries to several key players thwarted Barnet’s ambitions and Stimson’s contract was terminated just into the new year, with Fairclough taking over once more, this time as temporary manager. With just eight games remaining Martin Allen was asked to return to the club as manager and he was able to inspire the Bees in his first game in charge to a creditable 2-2 draw after being two goals down against table-topping Chesterfield.

Allen stayed for just three matches before he moved in somewhat controversial circumstances to League One side Notts County, themselves also in relegation difficulties. Under Allen, Barnet secured seven out of nine points and a resurgence had begun. Giuliano Grazioli and ex-Fulham boss Lawrie Sanchez then steadied the ship and secured some vital victories in the remaining matches to secure League Two survival. Sanchez, the former Northern Ireland manager, was then appointed in the summer of 2011 with Grazioli named as his assistant.

However, Sanchez would not be at the helm come the end of the following season. In a disappointing campaign the Bees were always encamped at the lower end of the League Two table and, although there were a number of good displays in cup competitions, notably reaching the regional final of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, consistency was hard to come by.

Sanchez was relieved of his duties with three matches remaining, with Allen again being called up to mastermind a points gathering operation. Barnet needed a victory on the last day of the campaign and duly won at Burton Albion to escape the drop and Allen had again accumulated seven points out of a possible nine. He would move to Gillingham in the summer, leading them to the League Two title the following season.

In the close season of 2012 the entire backroom staff were released as the club entered a new era with the appointment of Fairclough as director of football and Mark Robson assuming the role of head coach, with the emphasis very much on youth. Many of the previous season’s players were also released; including skipper Mark Hughes who had scored the winning goal at Burton.

In mid-October, with the team yet to record a victory in any competition, the world-famous Dutch international Edgar Davids was named as joint head coach alongside Robson. This appointment stunned the football fraternity and attracted worldwide media coverage for the club.

Davids became a fixture in the team and soon took sole charge of team matters. Despite many impressive results, including an away win at eventual champions Gillingham, defeat to Northampton on the final day of the season sentenced the Bees to the Conference on goal difference; the poor start to the campaign proving an impossible handicap to overcome.

The club also said farewell to Underhill, their home for over a 100 years. In an emotional match – the last but one of the season – the club managed to record a 1-0 victory over Wycombe Wanderers and hopes were high that relegation could be again be avoided, yet it was not to be.

Despite the obvious disappointment of relegation, with the club moving to a new ground – The Hive – there remained a mood of optimism at the club, boosted by the fact that Davids would again be at the helm for the Bees for the 2013-14 season.

The club narrowly missed out on the Conference play-offs, and Davids was replaced in the latter stages of the season. Ulrich Landvreugd and Dick Schreuder temporarily steadied the ship, before Allen returned for his fourth spell as manager.

Allen led Barnet to the Football Conference title (the third in the club’s history) the following season, meaning that the Bees were back in the Football League for the 2015-16 campaign.

The Bees enjoyed a steady return to the Football League, finishing 15th and 28 points clear of the drop zone. The season was notable for Barnet having the fourth best home record, picking up 42 points at The Hive.

In 2016-17, Barnet had a good start to the season before Martin Allen departed for National League side Eastleigh. Rossi Eames and Henry Newman were put in temporary joint charge and the good form continued as the club flirted with the play-off places over the new year.

Kevin Nugent was named as head coach in February with Eames becoming his assistant. Nugent’s stay at The Hive was brief and he departed after only one win in 11, with Eames once again placed in temporary charge. Barnet finished a respectable 15th place for the second season in a row and comfortably clear of the relegation zone.

The season was notable for John Akinde becoming Barnet’s highest-ever Football League goalscorer, surpassing Sean Devine’s record. Akinde also finished the 16-17 season as the joint top goalscorer in League Two with 26 goals.

In May 2017, it was announced that Eames would become our head coach permanently, making him the youngest full-time boss in the top four divisions of English football and completing a rise from the youth set-up all the way to the first team.

A bright start including a narrow defeat at Premier League Brighton in the Carabao Cup and a 4-1 win away to Swindon saw the Bees get off to a good start, but a poor run of form saw Mark McGhee replace Rossi in November.

McGhee was charged with appointing his successor and hired Graham Westley in January but with only 2 wins on the board in 11 games, Martin Allen was brought in for a fifth time. The Bees would win 5 of their last 7 matches but this wouldn’t be enough to keep them up, relegation to the National League was confirmed despite a comfortable final day victory over Chesterfield.

John Still returned to the club in May 2018 and will be aiming for a swift return to the EFL.

CURRENT FORM

Well, they saw off mighty Maidenhead on Saturday and are currently ninth in the table.

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They have today signed Alfie Pavey from Dover…

Barnet Football Club are delighted to announce the signing of Alfie Pavey from Dover Athletic! Having been in fine form so far this season, Alfie decided to make the switch to The Hive London and will certainly add something new to this current group of players. At just 23 years of age,

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Alfie already has a plethora of experience having represented a number of clubs in both the Football League and non-league. Starting his career with Maidstone United, Alfie earned a move to Millwall in 2013 where he would stay for a further four years.

A win for the Shots would put us within two points of them and would be our fourth away win. Though as I have been pointing out on ShotsWeb and social media, it must be me jinxing the team’s dreadful home record and even when I travel away they don’t win so maybe the blame can be firmly laid at my door should we go down at The Hive.

Barnet’s support is even worse than Dagenham’s so 300 or more Shots fans with Elvis and co banging the drums should get the place rocking.

Chatting in the East Bank last home game re our “Come On The Shots” song, I reckon when we’re away it should be sung as “We’re Aldershot”… what do others think? (comments welcome).

Right, I’m off to plan an itinerary and find out train times etc- won’t be getting back to the south coast until after midnight that’s for sure.

 

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