Boro’ first met Shrewsbury Town back in 2003; the Shrews relegated out of the Football League – and then bouncing back straight up. In the two decades that followed, we only managed another eight meetings with the Shropshire side. The last of those, going into the 2023-4 League One season, came in 2015. And, again, that was a case of them coming down (to League Two) and going back up at the first opportunity. So, you’d be forgiven for thinking that we’ve done a good job of avoiding each other.
We even got into the evasiveness ourselves with our promotion into League One in 2011; leaping above them for a short while. In the time since 2015, the Shrews went on to go close to promotion to the Championship in 2018. But it’s perhaps fair to say that League One is a bit of a comfort blanket for them. For us, we were stuck in League Two. That all changed in 2023 – and with it comes a chance to renew old acquaintances. We might also do something about our relatively poor record against them too. Or maybe not.
Shrewsbury Town: The Facts
Oteley Road, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY2 6ST
Formed in 1886, the Shrews had to wait until 1950 before the Football League let them in. In their early years, the club were members of the Shropshire and District League (1890) and the Birmingham and District League (1895). With one title and three runners-up medals to their name, Shrewsbury Town remained in the B&DL ’til 1937; joining the Midland League after the third of their second place finishes. It took just one attempt to win the title; the third season on the trot in which they amassed 100 league goals.
It was one half of a double, too. For the second time in their history, the Shrews won the Welsh Cup in 1937 – beating Swansea at the second time of asking in the final. Of course, the Second World War Two came along and got in the way. The Shrews, however, picked up where they left off after the War. In 1946 and 1948, they were Midland League title-winners and nearly made it seven straight seasons in which they reached that 100-goal milestone. On the way to that second title win, however, they fell just short on 98 goals.
The Shrews fell away in the following two seasons, finishing 8th and 10th respectively. That didn’t stop them from joining the Football League in 1950, though. Initially, they found themselves on the northern side of the Division Three split. But, after their debut season, they were labelled as “southerners”. Nowt wrong with tha’! After taking time to acclimatise to the higher standard of competition, Shrewsbury Town built up a head of steam during the 1970s and 1980s. In ’84 and ’85, they reached their best-ever finish of 8th in Division Two.
How to get to Shrewsbury Town – Travel Information – Distance: 138 miles
It takes about two-and-a-half hours to get to Shrewsbury. And you can do so by taking the M1 north to Junction 19 for the M6. It doesn’t matter if you prefer to use the M6 Toll or not; you’ll be requiring Junction 10a after the Toll rejoins the old M6. At this junction, head onto the westbound M54 for Telford/North Wales.
Continue onto the A5 for Shrewsbury/North Wales. After eight miles, take the 3rd exit at the roundabout for Thieves’ Lane/B4380 towards Much Wenlock and Bridgnorth. Follow the B4380 over two roundabouts onto Oteley Road. The ground will appear on the left.
The Shrews have a number of parking options up for grabs when you drive – supposedly. Parking at the ground itself seems to be a no-go. So, you have a Park and Walk option or a Park and Ride alternative. The club’s Matchday Travel Plan sets it out so you can see if there’s one that suits you better. It also points out the streets and retail parks you ought to avoid if you want a stress-free (and fine-free) parking experience.
Services to: BIRMINGHAM INTERNATIONAL
At two miles and 45 minutes to complete, the walk is a tad on the long side. We therefore suggest you grab a taxi. Unless you need to get your steps in?
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