A champion day at the Riverside
The Kids Kabin Middlesbrough team and our members from Grove Hill had the opportunity of a lifetime during the Easter school holiday on a private tour of Riverside Stadium, home of the English Football League Championship's Middlesbrough Football Club!
After we arrived and took in the sights from outside, we were led by our lovely tour guide Jill to the executive box, where club chair Steve Gibson and the other board members enjoy the match on game days.
Every day's a school day, even in the holidays!
While the kids got a chance to feel like executives, Jill filled us in on the history of Riverside Stadium, which was opened on August 26, 1995 after only 32 weeks of construction. The structure currently holds up to 34,753 spectators during match days.
After the kids each had the chance to sit in Steve Gibson’s match day seat, we got to visit the executive offices and suites, home to Gibson’s own personal collection of club memorabilia. Next up was a trip to the players' luxury dressing room, complete with a spacious gym, snacks and drinks, where we all got to feel like our favourite star on match day and even got to try on the kit!
We were a bit surprised at the lack of luxury in the visitors' dressing room, but Jill explained it's still one of the nicest in the championship.
A little taste of fame
The highlight for many came next, when we got to go through the game day tunnel onto the edge of the pitch. We all got to pretend we were football stars ready to play in an important match before entering the media suite to sit at the podium where the players and coaches address journalists following each match.
We had such a great time that we made Jill and her team a little thank you gift - a wooden Middlesbrough sign painted by the kids who went on the trip.
Theo, one of our members in Middlesbrough summed up the day perfectly. He said: “Thank you Jill and thank you Middlesbrough FC! It was the best day ever!”
Thank you to Annaelise for these fantastic pictures!