Nine landmarks every Arsenal fan should visit
- Credit: Archant / PA / Canva / Camden Town Brewery
Arsenal fans had some good news last month… the 2020/21 season finished!
After one of the least enjoyable campaigns to be a Gooner in recent memory (certainly for me), fans will be looking forward to starting afresh this summer - with hopefully a signing or two to boot.
The 2020/21 campaign is also the fiftieth anniversary of a happier time for the club, when Arsenal celebrated their first FA Cup/league title domestic double in 1970/71.
To celebrate, we have picked out ten alternative landmarks to visit during the off season so you can enjoy some places free from "Kroenke Out" banners!
The Twelve Pins, Seven Sisters Road, Finsbury Park
For a pre-match drink, there are few better places to talk about team selections and debate Willian’s squad selection than The Twelve Pins. The pub also has two screens - which means you can watch the game even if you don’t have tickets.
You may also want to watch:
The Famous Cock Tavern, Upper Street, Islington
Less than ten minutes walk from the Emirates Stadium is The Famous Cock Tavern, a great place for a pre, post, or even mid game meal. The venue is not far from Highbury and Islington station.
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‘The Arsenal’ club shop, Drayton Park, Islington
The match ball, the mug, the toothbrush, the lime green training top, the bruised banana (their words, not mine) coloured watch, the keyring, the neck warmer modelled by Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, and not forgetting the Gunnersaurus pillow… It’s all here in the official club store next to Finsbury Park station. And if it’s not here, it will be in Arsenal’s second club shop The Armoury, next to the Emirates.
Playing statues, The Emirates Stadium
Younger fans might not remember, but Arsenal used to enjoy successes beyond an eighth place finish! Statues of club legends Tony Adams, Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, Ken Friar, and Herbert Chapman are a reminder of victories past and (possibly) inspiration for glories to come.
Camden Town Brewery, Camden
Charlie George may not have a statue (yet), but he was an integral part of the 1970/71 side that won Arsenal’s first ever league and cup double. As that achievement reaches 50 years, it is being commemorated with the team set to don a similar yellow away kit for 2021/22. But, what’s more, the club has teamed up with Camden Town Brewery to bring fans a special edition Double Hells lager. The can, coloured yellow of course, is brewed just down the road from the Emirates and is a must-see for fans looking to toast past victories.
Gillespie Park, Islington
A short walk from Drayton Park station is the 3.4 hectare Gillespie Park, home to hundreds of plants, birds and butterflies. The park gave its name to Gillespie Road and its tube station upon foundation of the Piccadilly Line in 1906. But with the Gunners moving from Woolwich to north London, legendary manager Herbert Chapman successfully lobbied for the station to be renamed… Arsenal! Well, technically speaking, it was called Arsenal (Highbury Hill) from 1932 to 1960 - when it took its current name.
Blue Plaque to Herbert Chapman, Haslemere Avenue in Hendon
One of only a few football-related blue plaques is dedicated to Chapman – who moved to a then newly-built house in 1926 upon becoming manager of Arsenal. Winning the FA Cup in 1929-30, and the league in 1930-31 and 1932-33, Chapman is credited with establishing Arsenal as the national force they would become. He died, while still living in Hendon, age 55 in 1934.
Ken Friar Bridge
The former managing director of Arsenal was immortalised with the renaming of the North Bridge out of the stadium to the station, to The Ken Friar Bridge in 2014. For impressiveness, it certainly beats The James Milner Door!
When The Gunners moved to the Emirates in 2006 it left a hole the size of the former Highbury stadium. Arsenal moved quickly to redevelop and have created Highbury Square, a collection of 650 flats - built with elements of the former stadium intact. The flats were completed in 2010.
(And if you fancy a journey) Tony Adams' favourite Indian restaurant
Arsenal’s former captain must have a taste for a good Indian, as he has ventured well beyond north London to find his favourite. ‘Donkey’ Adams is such a regular to the Asha Indian Kitchen, where he lives in Cirencester in Gloucestershire, that he played a charity game of cricket with them. Bit of a trek from Islington for this one, mind!