This ground review gets a much higher mark than it should, purely because I’m writing it on my mobile phone whilst stood in the sea.
Bedlington is a club I have a lot of affection for. Firstly, their full title is Bedlington Terriers, a name steeped in romance and history and also slightly mental. Secondly, Dr Pit Welfare Park is a lovely little non-league ground, packed full of character and peculiarity.
So when their website advertised a pre-season friendly a couple of weeks ago against their own reserve team at 10.30am on a Saturday I jumped at the chance. I set my alarm (don’t judge me, I don’t have children or a proper job) and made the short car journey, slightly bleary eyed but excited to return to one of my favourite clubs in the North East.
You can imagine my disappointment then when the place was deserted. Turnstiles closed, no goal nets up, nothing to suggest a game was taking place. Nobody to ask what was going on and frankly, with the sun shining and other stuff to do, I elected to take a few snaps then head to the beach.
The ground itself is smashing. There’s a weird sort of complex around the clubhouse with corporate facilities that’s not really visible from the outside so please blame Bedlington Terriers for this. There’s a main stand that has clearly been there a long time and in one corner is the my favourite thing of all: the scoreboard.
I’ve borrowed a photograph from a previous trip there as this beast is incredible. An American businessman who randomly bought the title “lord of Bedlington” on the Internet decided to google Bedlington and discovered the football club. He’s now their main sponsor and he donated the scoreboard as a present.
It stands about as tall as the two storey houses behind it and taller than any other part of the ground whatsoever. It’s a full on video scoreboard that I believe previously belonged to an American Football team. It’s absolutely absurd but a brilliant novelty and one which elevates the Dr Pit Welfare Ground above its peers.
I didn’t get a good glimpse of it today, which is infuriating, but hey, you should see my tan now. I still feel like I won.
Couple of photos I’d previously taken: