Guest post by Superbreaker Robert Lofthouse…
This weekend was our youngest son’s 9th birthday and as a special treat we decided to visit the home of their favourite football team for the Manchester United Museum and Tour. We were all very excited as it was the first time that they had been to a real football stadium.
On arrival at Old Trafford the first stop was the Museum where you can learn all about the club’s history and some of the many players over the years. You get to see some of the hundreds of trophies that the team have won and you can even have your photo taken with one. You see the different kits worn, learn about some of the legendary players and learn how to be a footballer in one of the film shows.
When it was time for the tour we were called to the meeting point before being taken by our guide to see what our sons desperately wanted to see, the pitch. Our guide was excellent and he took us on an amusing and interesting tour around the Theatre of Dreams and knew the club inside out. We saw the pitch from various angles and even got to sit in the players seats in the dugout. We saw where the media sit to report on the matches and even saw (from a distance) the box used by Colleen Rooney. One of the highlights of the tour was the visit to the team’s changing room and everyone got to sit in their favourite player’s seat. There seemed to be a lot of fans of Van Persie on our tour and everyone wanted to sit in his seat!
We were taken to the press centre to watch a short film, we saw where the player’s families went before a match and even saw the players’ tunnel. Work was being carried out on the players’ tunnel area so we couldn’t walk down the tunnel but got to stand at the end and learn about how the club was formed. The tour also remembered the players that were lost in the Munich air disaster of 1958.
The tour ended in the huge Manchester United shop and our sons were in their element deciding what to buy with their pocket money.
After the tour we returned to the museum to see more of the exhibits and have a drink in the Red Café. Here the boys were able to have a game of table football whilst we relaxed with a cup of tea!
As someone whose sons know a lot more about football than I do, I absolutely loved the tour. There were people of all ages and nationalities on the tour and I would definitely recommend it to everyone. Now that we have been on the tour, we are trying to work out when we can take our sons to a match at Old Trafford.
TIPS FOR VISITING OLD TRAFFORD
1. Arrive early – On booking you will be given a time for your tour. Make sure you allow enough time to see all of the exhibits at the museum. We went back to the museum after the tour and were there all afternoon.
2. Everyone on the tour gets a commemorative certificate – make sure you collect this from the shop. If you go to one of the machines next to the tills you can even have your name and the date printed on the certificate.
3. Visit the nearby Lowry Outlet Mall – The Lowry Outlet Mall is about a 5 minute drive from Old Trafford. This is an indoor shopping centre with various shops including M&S Outlet and a Gap Outlet as well as a cinema and a number of restaurants including Pizza Express, Harvester and Bella Italia. Parking is free if you buy something from the mall. I would recommend booking a meal before you go as when we turned up everyone was just leaving the Lowry Theatre so we had to wait a while to get a table.