Harlequins - Twickenham Stoop
(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
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 ^
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.
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.
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.
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 ^Near Twickenham Station
Cabbage Patch (another
nickname of the main Twickenham stadium due to the land's previous use) is the closest
pub to the train station. As such, they are usually well prepared for the crowds with
plenty of bars, TV screens and food on the go.
- The Shack 68 is right beside Twickenham Station too, and is part owned by former England and Harlequins full-back Ugo Monye.
- The Misty
Moon is also in the vicinity, formerly part of the Wetherspoons chain but now privately-owned.
Heath Road is also rugby-friendly.
- The 17th Century White
a pleasant location on the riverside, and although a slightly longer
transfer from station to pint is still a popular place on match day.
- The Royal Oak (formerly the Twickenham
Tup) is a large sports-friendly venue on Richmond Road.
- The William
Webb Ellis is
a Wetherspoons pub close to the train station.
Barmy Arms is
another popular spot for rugby fans.
- The Orange Tree is on the right as you exit Richmond station and offers live sport and easy access to the shuttle buses to the stadium.
- The Sun Inn is hidden just off the main street in Richmond, but not from the regular rugby visitors.
St Margarets Station
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.
Sleeping Back to Top ^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;
- The Twickenham Marriott is an interesting choice, located right inside Twickenham (national) stadium!
- There is a Premier Inn within walking distance of the stadium.
- Twickenham Guest House is also close by.
- 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.
- Fan's Forum
- 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
- With the club keen to retain the HFC monogram, a dictionary was browsed and Harlequins was the favoured selection.
- 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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