Harlequins - Twickenham Stoop

 

Harlequins (or to use their proper name The Harlequin Football Club), were founded in 1866 (150 years and counting!) and compete in the English Premiership, European Cup and LV Cup. They are based at Twickenham Stoop, a stone's throw from the English national stadium Twickenham.

Since the advent of leagues and professional rugby, Harlequins have spent every season but one in the top tier of English rugby, and collected many trophies in the process. In addition to currently holding the Premiership title following a 30-23 final win over Leicester Tigers, the club have won the European Challenge Cup and predecessors three times (2001, 2004, 2011) and the national cup competition twice (1988, 1991). In the European Cup, the closest Quins have come to success was in the 2008-09 season when they reached the quarter-finals.


Ground Information                                     Back to Top ^ 

The Twickenham Stoop is fully enclosed on all sides, and the ground is usually close to capacity, ensuring a good atmosphere.

The East, or Eithad Stand was built in 1997 and provides 4,200 covered seats, in addition to corporate hospitality boxes. The stand runs beyond the length of the pitch so if you are seated in one of the end blocks you may find yourself beyond the try line! Sitting opposite the Etihad Stand is the LV= Stand, an equally lengthy structure opened in 2005. This all-seater stand has a capacity of 4,000, and is also home to the member's bar, club shop, more corporate boxes and the club offices.

The South Stand behind the posts is the most recent addition at the Stoop, with 4,000 seats. Down the other end, the North Stand is a semi-temporary structure with room for around 2,000 seated spectators. It is the only stand with supporting pillars that do obstruct the view slightly.

Getting There                                                                                   Back to Top ^


View Harlequins Rugby Guide in a larger map

By Car

Vehicle access to Twickenham Stoop is via Langhorn Drive, and the ground is within easy reach of the M3 and M4. Car parking is available at the ground, with driving directions here.

By Train

The closest station to the ground is Twickenham, around 10-15 minutes walk from the stadium. Twickenham is served by regular services from London Waterloo to Reading, with the majority of trains calling at Clapham Junction for those connecting from other parts of the South of England. Upon exiting the station, turn right and then left at the roundabout. Signs will direct you left onto Court Way then left again onto Craneford Way - follow this road round until you reach the ground.

An alternative is Whitton station, which is also within a short walk of the stadium. Upon leaving the station, head North on Percy Road before taking a quick right onto Bridge Way. Follow this road until you reach Redway Drive, where you take a right then left onto the busy Chertsey Road, and continue until you reach the Stoop.

By Air

Heathrow Airport

Twickenham is around 6 miles from Heathrow Airport, which you'll notice as the flight path passes nearby! From Heathrow, take the Piccadilly Line of the London Underground to Hounslow East station, and transfer to the 281 bus for the remainder of the journey.

Gatwick Airport

Twickenham is also easily accessed from London Gatwick airport - simply take a train towards London (not the Gatwick Express) and change at Clapham Junction for services to Twickenham.

The Etihad Stand
Image - Sale fan James Mooney


Drinking                                                                                                            Back to Top ^

In The Ground

The main public bar within the ground is located in the Eithad Stand, which continues to serve drinks and usually has a live band after the match has finished. The bar is equipped with TVs so if there is a live match on before/after your match at the Stoop you can catch the action in comfort there. To the rear of the South Stand there is also a real ale bar, which if you can squeeze in is a good place to go if you're a fan (though there is little other than ale and soft drinks on offer). There are around 4 real ales, one of which is always a guest beer for that match. Finally, there are temporary bars in the South West and North West corners of the ground, serving up a variety of drinks nice and quickly.

The club sometimes run a happy hour before the game where you can grab two drinks for the price of one - just on the club's website in advance to find out if it is operating on your visit.

Before/After the Game

If you don't want to hang around the ground after the final whistle, there are a few options nearby in Twickenham itself.

  • The Cabbage Patch (nickname of the national stadium due to the land's previous use) operated by Fullers is within a short walk of the ground.
  • The London Road and Misty Moon are opposite and next door to the Cabbage Patch respectively, offering a cheap and cheerful alternative to the aforementioned.
  • The recently-refurbished Three Kings on Heath Road is also rugby-friendly.
  • The Eel Pie on the very pretty pedestrianised Church Street is another option.
  • The 17th Century White Swan has a pleasant location on the riverside, which means you have to walk in the opposite direction of the stadium when you exit the train station. Still a popular place on match day.
  • The Twickenham Tup is a large sports-friendly venue on Richmond Road, and a good place to meet up with friends.

 
The LV= Stand at the Stoop
Image: Sale fan James Mooney

Eating                                                                    Back to Top ^

There is a wide range of interesting grub on offer at the Stoop, with an international cuisine stall in between the South and LV= Stand, in addition to sausages and hog baps on sale from various vendors dotted around the ground.

Away from the stadium, there is no desperate need to head back to Central London as you'll find plenty of options in the bars and restaurants of Richmond and Twickenham,  whilst the majority of bars listed above also serve food.

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Whilst many visitors opt to stay in Central London and combine rugby with a spot of sightseeing, those who want to stay close to the stadium and avoid the hassle of the journey out can take advantage of the following;

  • There is a Premier Inn within walking distance of the stadium.
  • If you need an excuse to stay in the pub all night, why not try the Alexander Pope?
  • The Twickenham branch of budget chain Travelodge has recently opened, and is right beside Twickenham station.

Make a Trip of It                                                   Back to Top ^

Whilst in the area, check out the World Rugby Museum in Twickenham Stadium that is home to a wide range of rugby memorabilia and charts the history of the sport.

Alternatively, Hampton Court Palace, the fantastic Richmond Park and the Royal Botanical Gardens in Kew are all in close proximity, whilst all of London's attractions are a short train ride away.

Key Information

Disabled Supporters

  • Disabled access at the ground is excellent, with seating and facilities in both the Etihad and LV= Stand

What's in a Name?

  • The name of the club has a rather unusual background. Originally known as Hampstead Football Club, but when membership expanded beyond the local area it was agreed that a new name was required

  • With the club keen to retain the HFC monogram, a dictionary was browsed and Harlequins was the favoured selection.

Twickenham 

  • After a rather nomadic existence in various parts of London in the early days, the club were invited in 1906 to take up residence at the new national stadium, which they duly accepted.

  • In the 1960s they acquired a plot of land nearby, and shortly started developing and playing at the Stoop.

  • The ground is also home to the Rugby League side that bears the same name.

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