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….I’ve been to Chesterfield to watch football before, a League Cup game at their old home Saltergate. I think Leicester won 2-0. All I remember is one really mouthy Spireite repeatedly walking over to the fence separating the fans and making a cut throat gesture whilst fans of both sides laughed at him (especially the Chesterfield fans who wore looks of “we have to put up with this prick all the time”). At the end of the game he did it one final time, before running off and falling down some stairs. When we were let off of our terrace we had to walk past him being loaded into an ambulance, where he was slightly less mouthy.
I remember Saltergate being a fun ground, if a bit run down even then. The Proact Stadium opened in 2010 and is a tad bigger. It certainly feels like a new stadium (as they always seem to), but the fans inside it try to make it a decent place to watch football. It seems very breezy as well, with the open corners and the peak district not a million miles away. It’s not as windswept as Barnsley used to be back in the day, but you can tell that you’re in Derbyshire if you were dropped there unknowing.
Like all new stadiums, you can’t just buy your ticket at the turnstile. You have to go to the ticket office, get it, and then scan it through a barcode reader at the turnstile (yes, those AGAIN). I queued up to get mine as a Norwegian man was getting his and asking about the best place to sit on his first visit to the ground. Maybe he was the Scandinavian version of me, I didn’t ask. He could well have been on stage in Oslo the night before and then driven over. He still would have spent less time in his car on the Friday than I did….