despite being relocated in the fictional county of Cleveland in 1974, Middlesbrough is actually in North Yorkshire which goes a long way to explaining why, despite its significance to Boro, it will never be a derby game to Sunderland.
The population is around 150,000 and there has been a settlement here since about the eighth century. The present conurbation, however, dates from the early 1800s and grew at a rapid pace in that century as first the port developed for coal transportation followed by the “Ironopolis” boom era as iron and steel, chemical works and shipbuilding grew exponentially.
Despite recent efforts like the Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA), the town is not expected to rival Florence as a magnet for art lovers any time soon.
twenty-five miles down the A19 by car or free bus or trains from Sunderland although the last train back is at 9pm. You could also go East Coast from Newcastle to Darlington and catch a connection across to Teesside.
the Transporter Bridge built in 1911; supplying the steel for both the Sydney Harbour and Tyne Bridges; Brian Clough; zany funster and solicitor Bob Mortimer; former Robocop and now Mayor Ray Mallon; having allegedly the best constabulary money can buy; a crime rate twice the national average and being a few minutes from going out of business altogether in 1986.
having been at Ayresome Park since 1903, Boro moved to the then Cellnet sponsored Riverside Stadium in 1995. It has an ambitious capacity of 35000 and can accommodate, tomorrow, about 4200 away fans in the South Stand. The ground is about fifteen to twenty minutes’ walk from the town centre and railway station.
The ground, for me, is reminiscent of Pride Park, the Brittania and St Marys and equally lacking in character.
don’t expect any! Although not a derby to us, I have probably seen as much bother here over the decades, if not more, than at the real derby. They don’t like us so colours, Wearside accents and smog references are to be avoided. If you are having a drink anywhere around the town centre significant caution should be exercised.The traditionally laissez-faire attitude of Cleveland Constabulary does not help.
many will choose to drink in Hartlepool then head in to Middlesbrough by taxi. If you do venture into the town, there is a large Wetherspoon house called the a bit too near the station. There are no pubs in the vicinity of the ground, not that you’d want to if there were.
Little known facts:
in May 1940, Middlesbrough became the first town in the UK to be bombed by the Luftwaffe (shame on you if you said they had the right idea); an area of Middlesbrough has the lowest life expectancy in Britain and, having been more or less built from scratch rather than expanding around a market town, the town was built from scratch and the centre laid out on a grid pattern like some US cities.
none! I only recommend places I’ve been to and can vouch for and nowhere in the town centre fits the bill. That’s a first for this guide.