Gigg Lane or The Energy Check Stadium for sponsorship reasons, is a purpose built football stadium located in the Greater Manchester town of Bury. Home to Bury F.C since opening way back in 1885, the football ground has a current capacity of 11,840.
Bury FC’s home dates back to the 19th Century with the inaugural match held against Wigan on the 12th September 1885, which saw the home side earn an entertaining 4-3 victory. The first competitive match also yielded a similar result with The Shakers beating local rivals Manchester City 4-2 in yet another goal-fest.
Although Bury FC are still capable of entertaining, today’s stadium bears little resemblance to the set of facilities that existed back then, with the ground’s capacity peaking in the 1960s when it was capable of accommodating 35,000 fans.
Following on from the Taylor Report in the 1990s, the stadium was finally transitioned to all-seating in 1999 with the final stand, The Cemetery End demolished just in time for the new Millennium, although this isn’t to say that the current stadium is particularly modern.
In fact, Gigg Lane was used as the filming location for a 1996 TV Movie based on the 1989 Hillsborough Disaster as a direct stand in for Hillsborough Stadium, which goes to show how potentially dated the facilities were then and are now.
In November 2013 Bury announced that they had successfully sold the naming rights to national Sports retailer, JD Sports. However, the rights have since been changed, with Gigg Lane now officially known as the “Energy Check Stadium”.
Below is a seating plan of Bury’s Gigg Lane Stadium:
The four stands at Gigg Lane are as follows: Main Stand (North) where the clubs facilities are based, Cemetery End (East) former terrace, Les Hart Stand (South) which is the largest by capacity and Manchester Road End (West) which is where the away fans are housed.
Click the thumbnails above to enlarge an image of each stand and to read a more detailed description of each part of the stadium.
Fans of Bury will by and large be pleased with the developments that have occurred at Gigg Lane since the 1990s.
The welcomed addition of roofs for each stand has been a long time coming, although due to the ground’s age, the frequency of support pillars across three out of the four stands can sometimes impede upon views of the action on the pitch.
The travelling contingent are housed within the Manchester Road Stand which is a goal-end, all-seater stand which usually has an allocation of around 2,000 tickets per match.
Located slightly below pitch level and perhaps slightly further back from the goal than one would hope, the Manchester Road End doesn’t give fans the best vantage points of the action, however this is somewhat offset by the fact that most away fans choose to stand for the 90 minutes.
We’ve already mentioned the support pillars previously, so won’t go on about them, although if you’re a fan of a lower league football team then you’re probably more than use to them by now.
Note: It is currently known as the Ratio Law Stand for sponsorship reasons.
At Gigg Lane there is the Bury FC Social Club which is open on matchdays for both the home and visiting sets of supporters. Costing just £1.00 to get in and located behind the main stand next to the car park, the pub is a decent sized open space which is perfect to grab a prematch pint from.
Outside the ground along Manchester Road approximately 10 minutes away there is The Swan & Cemetery which is a Thwaites run pub and the Rose and Crown which is slightly smaller but certainly not lacking in the ale department.
Back within the centre of town there is a reliable Wetherspoons on Hayemarket Street called “Art Picture House”, and on route there is the Staff of Life pub which is pretty close to Gigg Lane, making it suitably busy on match days.
At the ground there are “catering” options within each of the four stands in addition to the usual burger vans scattered throughout around the outside of the stadium. The range of food is what you’d expect to find with the likes of burgers, hot dogs and pies costing you around the £3.00 mark.
Bury’s official club store is located at Gigg Lane and is known as the Shakers Superstore.
Normal Opening Times
- Monday- Friday: 9.30 am – 5.00 pm
- Saturday: 9.00 am – 12.00 pm
- Sunday: Closed
Match Day Opening Times
- Saturday: 10.00 am – 3.00 pm
- Evening Games: 10.00 am to kick-off
There is also the official online store which is worth visiting if you want to check out the merchandise in advance or simply can’t make it to the shop during usual opening hours: http://buryfcnetwork.co.uk/shop/.
It’s worth knowing as well that the shop will always open for 30 minutes after the full time whistle regardless which day of the week it is.
It doesn’t appear as if Bury FC currently offer fans the chance to undertake a stadium tour of Gigg Lane. If this changes, we’ll be sure to update this section.
Tickets to see Bury at Gigg Lane can be purchased in the usual ways such as telephone (0871 221 1885), the ticket-office (Monday – Friday 9.00 am – 4.30 pm ) and on the internet by visiting Bury FC Online Ticketing.
- Adults: £15.00
- Concessions: £10.00
- Under 11’s: £5.00
- Under 5’s: Free of charge
- Adult & 1 Child (Under 16): £15.00
- Adult & 2 Child (Under 16): £20.00
Bury’s Stadium is located approximately 1.3 miles south of Bury city centre and according to the official website it holds the distinction of being the only stadium in England to be accessible via one road – Gigg Lane, the name of the stadium,
Bury doesn’t have it’s own railway station with the closest options being Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Victoria, both of which are approximately 8.5 mile south.
Instead there is the Metrolink Tram system which serves the area of Greater Manchester and connects Bury to it’s larger neighbouring city of Manchester. From the Metrolink station known as the Bury Interchange, Gigg Lane is exactly 1 mile away which will take you around 15 – 20 minutes by foot.
- Exit the station and continue to Haymarket Street
- Turn left and follow this road straight until you reach the across the A58 junction
- Proceed straight across onto Knowlsey Stret
- Continue along until you reach the Manchester Road A56
- Turn left, cross the metro tracks and follow until Gigg Lane stadium appears on your left hand side.
If you don’t fancy the walk then the 135 bus service which departs every 15 minutes from outside the Metro station can drop you off at Manchester Road which is at the bottom of Gigg Lane.
Bury’s stadium has the following address for satnav:
- Gigg Lane, Bury BL9 9HR.
Parking at the JD Stadium is parsimonious to say the least: there is a small car park of 40 places located at Fishpool Liberal Club on Woodley Street, and the main club car park which is reserved exclusively for players, members of staff and guests of the club.
As a result all Bury FC recommend is getting there early and using the local street parking around the stadium where possible.
As Gigg lane is built out of town in a primarily residential area there aren’t any bespoke built hotels nearby, with the closest hotels all located on the Manchester A56 road which leads back towards Bury Town Centre.
The Premier Inn next to the Metrolink station and Council building is probably in the best location, with the Old White Lion Guesthouse on the other side of town probably second pick amongst an otherwise drab range of options.