Creative Soccer Culture

Residence #57 | 'County Ground' Swindon Town

Wandering into Wiltshire for the 57th and next stop of our 'Residence' tour we find ourselves staring upwards at the pylon floodlights that light up the County Ground, the home of Swindon Town Football Club. This is a stadium that has witnessed football through all four divisions of English professional football and has been shaped architecturally over 123 years, since it was first opened in 1896.

The County Ground is every bit the typically traditional English football ground. It was here first, so everything else had to work around it. Boxed in by residential streets, with each gap in the rows of houses offering a teasing glimpse of the stadium upon approach to match day, there's something proper about Swindon's home that makes it a place that feels heart-warmingly familiar for any football fan. A striking floodlight in each corner and four individual stands full of character.


Some might call it wear and tear, but each imperfection is a charming battle-scar that tells a different chapter in the history of this club. From the highs of the Premier League in 1993/94 to the lows of fighting to maintain their Football League status, the County Ground has seen it all. A stadium that has an identity born from generational upgrades – the interior is a mash-up of renovation, with modern upgrades being housed in throwback facilities, and clues of yesteryear never fully disappearing.

Flanked by two large stands, and boxed in by the vociferous Town End and uncovered Stratton Bank Stand, the County Ground is scattered with quirks; from one of the floodlight pylons poking up through a roof, to the electric scoreboard and Rolex Clock (the only Rolex Clock in world football) behind the goal. You couldn't and wouldn't build a new stadium like this in the modern day, and that's what makes Swindon's home so special. It's a visual representation of their story.


The capacity of the County Ground is 15,547, with the two-tiered Don Rogers Stand hosting 4,800 seats.


The Town End behind the goal is where Swindon's most vocal supporters congregate. One of the floodlights in this stand pierces the roof.


Proper little chips-in-a-cone, nod to the programme seller, pre-match pint of a ground, this. Swindon Town are currently playing the 2018/19 season in League Two, but by their own admission and by their size and history, they're underachieving. Just four years ago they were 90 minutes away from the Championship and now they're in the fourth tier. But that's exactly why the Football League is so brilliant. It never stands still.


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