Craven Cottage is an all-seater stadium, with a capacity approaching 26,500, making it one of the Premiership’s smallest grounds.
When Fulham reached the Premiership for the 2001-02 season, they still had terraced areas in the ground, running contrary to Football League regulations that stadia in the top two divisions of the English pyramid system must be all seater. By April 2002 no improvements had been made, resulting in a move to Loftus Road, home of local rivals QPR.
Partial redevelopment of the stadium enabled the club to return to their “spiritual home” for the 2004-05 season. The Putney End is the southernmost stand in the ground. Away fans are generally allocated part of this stand, though for matches against better supported sides, the whole Putney End is allocated to visiting fans.
One side of the Putney End, adjacent to the away fans section, is an area for “neutral” fans, which contains a cosmopolitan mix of home, away and neutral fans. Overlooking the ground from one corner, between the Johnny Haynes Stand and Putney End, is the unique Cottage Pavilion building, though the original cottage was demolished many years ago. The original Cottage resulted from an oversight by architect Archibald Leitch, who omitted to include changing rooms in his final plans.
How to get to Craven Cottage
The Craven Cottage stadium is located in Stevenage Road, London SW6 6H, next to Bishops Park on the banks of the Thames.
Drivers arriving from the North are advised to follow the A1/M1 as far as the A406 North Circular Road. Thereafter, follow signage for Harlesdon / A404, following the A219 to Hammersmith. Upon reaching Hammersmith Broadway, follow signage for Fulham, turning right after a mile into Harboard Street. A left turn at its end leads to Craven Cottage.
From the South and East, the South Circular (A205) route is recommended, following signage for Putney Bridge (A219), crossing the bridge and following signs for Hammersmith for ½ mile, turning left into Bishops Park Road, then right at its end. Drivers arriving from the West can follow the M4 as far as the A4, branching left after 2 miles onto Hammersmith Broadway, following signage for Fulham, turning right into Harboard Street after a mile, then left at its end. The following map can provide directions from all UK locations and may well prove useful in locating parking and recommended pubs.
The nearest tube station is Putney Bridge on the District Line, a 15-minute walk from Craven Cottage. Putney Bridge station has regular connections to all London’s mainline stations. Click here to check the current train timetables
Heathrow is the nearest airport, some 14 miles from Craven Cottage. At the Heathrow tube station, take a Piccadilly Line connection towards Cockfosters. Change at Earl’s Court, heading for Wimbledon and disembarking at Putney Bridge. The total journey time is less than an hour. Click here to check the current flight times
There are several taxi companies in London that can take you to and from the stadium. You can always prebook a private hire taxi, or hail a black cab on any highway.
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Where to Park?
craven cottage parkingOn-street parking near Craven Cottage is restricted to just one hour on match days and thus unsuitable for visiting fans. Some on-street parking is available, to early arrivals, on the far side of Fulham Palace Road. However, these areas are controlled by Local Authority parking meters and the vast majority of visiting fans have advised the use of public transport to get to Craven Cottage.
Craven Cottage Tours
Red Letter Days offer a tour of Craven Cottage, including a three-course lunch. The tour is a must for all Fulham fans, and worthwhile for early arrivals and visiting supporters too with the opportunity to go behind the scenes, visiting the dressing rooms, dug outs, the cottage balcony, corporate hospitality areas and press facilities. After the tour, you’ll enjoy a delicious three-course lunch served in the George Cohen restaurant. At the time of writing, the tour cost £45 and lasted approximately 2 and a half hours.
Away Friendly Pubs near Craven Cottage
Some of the pubs near the ground have been designated home supporters only and visiting fans have advised caution in selecting a pub for a pre-match drink. Near the stadium, The Zulu Bar, on Fulham High Street has received several good reviews from visiting fans. The Eight Bells, near Putney Bridge tube station, is also recommended, as is The Larrik, a little further along Fulham High Street.
Several pubs to the South of the Thames, in Putney, have also been recommended. The Dukes Head, in Lower Richmond Road, is recommended, providing excellent food and offering views over the Thames. The Bricklayers Arms, in Waterman Street, offers excellent real ales. However, pubs on this side of the river are a good 20-minute walk from the ground.
Hotels near Craven Cottage
The 3-star Best Western Lodge, 52-54 Upper Richmond Road, Putney SW15 2RN is just over a mile from Craven Cottage and has received consistently excellent guest reviews. It is expensive, but ideally located in South-West London, with excellent nearby transport links. Free on-site parking is provided.
The Ibis London Earls Court, 47 Lillie Road, London SW6 1UD charges by the room, rather than guest and may prove a better alternative from a financial perspective. Within a 5-minute walk of Earls Court tube station on the District and Piccadilly Lines, just an 8-minute ride from Putney Bridge station. Undercover parking is available at a reasonable charge.
What have other Away Fans said about their trip to Craven Cottage?
Many visiting fans have remarked that the redeveloped Craven Cottage has a pleasing blend of new and old features, conferring individuality and character. The majority of away fans have found that adequate facilities and pleasant surroundings make Craven Cottage a good day out.
Many visitors have noted the pleasant atmosphere within the ground, with home and away fans mixing freely at the Putney End. On the downside, supporting pillars impede the view of play from certain areas of the away end. Visitors have also remarked upon an overly large presence of mounted police and dog handlers around the ground, despite no signs of any trouble whatsoever.