Rugby fans and commuters urged to “plan your journey”

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Posted on: 25 September 2015

“Plan your journey” is the message to rugby fans and commuters in Exeter, ahead of next Tuesday’s Rugby World Cup 2015 match at Sandy Park.

Tonga will be playing Namibia on Tuesday 29 September in the first of three matches to be hosted at the Exeter Chiefs’ stadium.

With the kick-off at 4:45pm on Tuesday, transport links in and around Exeter are likely to be congested, so match ticket holders are being urged to get to the ground in plenty of time. Commuters are also being reminded to be aware that public transport to Sandy Park is expected to be busier than usual at this time and to allow for additional traffic on the roads.

During the afternoon of the match, a multi-agency team (including Devon County Council, Devon and Cornwall Police, Devon Fire & Rescue, Highways England, Exeter City Council and England Rugby 2015) will be based at Devon County Council’s Highways Operations Control Centre to monitor traffic routes around the city.

Fans are reminded that no parking is available for supporters at Sandy Park and, due to the timing of the matches, there will be no Rugby World Cup 2015 parking at the Digby Park and Ride site and at Sowton. Ticket holders are advised to book the Westpoint Park and Ride service through the Exeter Chiefs website https://ticketing2.exeterchiefs.co.uk/fixture.aspx. Park and Ride tickets are £7 per vehicle, if booked in advance, or £10 on the day.

Chris Cranston, Devon County Council’s Highways Operations Manager, said: “For anyone with a match ticket, it’s worth arriving a couple of hours early to ensure you get there in plenty of time to make the most of the occasion. Despite extra capacity being provided on bus and rail routes, there will be a lot of pressure on the transport networks to Sandy Park, especially in the hours leading up to the 4:45pm kick off.

“Pre-booking parking at Westpoint, via the Exeter Chiefs website, is probably one of the best options for fans travelling to the matches by car as it’s cheaper than paying on the day, and more than 400 people have taken advantage of this offer so far.

“It’s also worth bearing in mind that even if you are not going to the match on Tuesday (29 September) please be aware that road, bus and rail links to Sandy Park and around the M5 J30 interchange are all likely to be much busier than normal. Our advice to commuters is to plan your journey home on that day. If possible either stay at work slightly later or avoid travelling near Sandy Park, including M5 Junction 30, Clyst St Mary Bypass and the A379 Inbound from 2pm to 4:45pm, if you can find an alternative route.”

Exeter’s Sandy Park will also host Namibia v Georgia at 8pm on Wednesday 7 October and Italy v Romania at 2.30pm on Sunday 11 October.

Public transport operators have published their arrangements for the matches and are available at https://www.journeydevon.info/rugby-world-cup-2015/

Stagecoach will be operating an increased, ten minute frequency on service C to Sandy Park from St David’s Station, Central Station, High Street (for the Fanzone) and the Bus Station.

Dartline will run its 77 service from Alphington and 78 from St David’s Station to Sandy Park for three hours before and after the match, as usual.

Great Western Railway will be providing more capacity on its Exmouth trains and will be running an increased, half-hourly frequency after the matches.

Digby & Sowton Station is a 15 minute walk from the stadium. Passengers requiring Polsloe Bridge, St James’ Park, Exeter stations and beyond should use Digby & Sowton only. Services are expected to be very busy after the match. There will also be a shuttle bus to Exeter St. David’s which is another option for those travelling further afield. Newcourt Station is a 10 minute walk away from the stadium. After the match Newcourt should only be used by passengers travelling to Topsham, Exton, Lympstone Commando, Lympstone Village and Exmouth.

Full details are available on the Traveline or National Rail websites.

Fans who do not have match tickets can enjoy the atmosphere at the Exeter Fanzone in Northernhay Gardens, which will be open from 11am on Tuesday 29 September, with the Webb Ellis Cup on display from 12noon to 1pm.

The Exeter Fanzone will also be open on 3rd, 7th, 10th, 11th, 17th, 18th, 24th, 25th, 30th, and 31st October. During this period Sowton (The Blue) Park & Ride will remain open until midnight, Monday – Saturday, so that those wanting to stay later can use service 52B, which operates every hour until 2335. Sowton Park and Ride will not open on Sunday, as normal.

For all you need to know about getting to the rugby visit: http://www.rugbyworldcup.com/travel/exeter If you live or travel through the area and want to know how your journey could be affected visit: www.rugbyworldcup.com/gameplan

For up-to-date travel advice on getting to the rugby follow us on twitter @RWC2015Travel and @DevonAlert

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