Willenhall Town
Noose Lane

Ground No. 68
Visited - Saturday 23rd July 2005
Result - Willenhall Town 1-0 Eastwood Town
Competition - Pre-Season Friendly
Attendance - 85 (h/c)

Originally I hadn’t got any more grounds planned to do for the pre-season, but with Wolves playing a friendly match in Dundee, another Saturday sitting around without anything to do was too grim a prospect, so after a quick check online to see what games were going on locally, I soon settled on paying a visit to Noose Lane, home of Willenhall Town, who were hosting Eastwood Town.

Despite Wolves women playing at the ground, and fixtures regularly being announced over the tannoy at Molineux, I had never been to Noose Lane, and not having been to a ground so far down the pyramid as this, I really didn’t know what to expect as I got on the bus, for the short journey over to the other side of the city, where the ground is located, right on the Wolverhampton-Walsall boundary.

Once there, after waiting for a bit for the turnstiles to open, I was soon in, and greeted by probably the sparsest ground that I have yet been to. Despite this though, it did have its character, with the clubhouse and facilities behind one goal, and a small stand over to the far left, which had a sloping roof, whilst on the side that you enter through, yet more small buildings, and a terrace situated directly behind the dugouts. There is nothing at the far end, except a small hill, where cars parked throughout the game. Whilst it would certainly look out of place even in the conference, it didn’t seem a bad place to watch football, and after buying a programme, I found a seat in the Main Stand to wait for the game to start. 

Like with the ground, I hadn’t really known what to expect from the level of football, but was pleasantly surprised as a decent game was played out. As id anticipated, the standard was well short of what you’d see in a league game, but even for a friendly, the effort was there from both sides, and they both had an evident will to win. Despite this, the first half ended 0-0, with the home side just about edging it on chances, but never really being able to break through the resolute Eastwood defence. In the second half however, that all changed, when just after the break, they managed to get forward, and find an opening, allowing the number 7 to poke home a nice finish, and give Willenhall the lead. The rest of the half was end-to-end action, and Eastwood must have hit the woodwork about half a dozen times, but the score ended Willenhall 1-0 Eastwood Town.

Throughout the game, there wasn’t really any atmosphere, for the main reason being that there wasn’t really a crowd! The attendance wasn’t announced by the club (I didn’t actually see any speakers), but in the second half I managed to count about 85 people in the ground, with the players on the pitch making the most noise! Despite this though it was all fairly friendly.

Overall, I was quite glad that I had chosen to come to the game, although it was my first match watching this level of football, I don’t think it will be my last. The quality might not be up to league standard, but there was something about the game, that can’t quite be captured in a bigger ground with a bigger crowd. As for Noose Lane itself, it was quite a good place to watch a game from, it might not be the best ground in the world, but it has a charm of its own, and I certainly look forward to visiting it again.

Entrance to the Ground

Rear of the Clubhouse

The Club Shop

The Clubhouse

The Near End

The Main Stand

Rear of the Main Stand

The Far Side

The Far End

The Near Side

The Terrace

The Terrace

Rear of the Terrace

Noose Lane Panoramic
28.07.09 - Willenhall Town 3-0 Stafford Rangers


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