Cans & Megabus: Your indispensable guide to Sunderland’s trip to Wigan Athletic!

Tom Walsh is back with his tales of life on League One awaydays. Next up, Wigan!

Wigan is one of those places you simply can’t get mad at. It’s the town that saw the humble pie and thought “you know what’ll make this better? If we put it in a bread bun”. It’s populated by people that have the most adorable accents, where at one moment you’ll be speaking to Fred Dibnah and later you’ll be engaged in debate with a lilting, pseudo-Scouse tone.

Cans & Megabus has enjoyed many a relaxing day in this corner of Lancashire. Our last visit, a 2013 jaunt on the snow-swept streets to see the likes of Craig Gardner and Steven Fletcher lead us to glory, was preceded with being treated to 90s happy hardcore and a round of Apple Sourz shots in a local ale house at 11am.

Wigan is also a place where people from all walks of life can enjoy a refreshing beverage in one of Tim Martin’s House of Ham, Egg and Chips. As witnessed when a young Cans & Megabus frequented on the evening of the 2019 Champions League final. Hungry for a night of terrible ska in the “Old Courts” venue, he ventured into a hostelry to quench his thirst, away from the hubbub of Liverpool winning a football match.

As young, handsome and witty Cans & Megabus gazed up from his £2.49 pint of Stella Artois he saw a bemusing, yet heartwarming collection of Wiganers. Around this one table were goths drinking Hooch, college intellects in tweed jackets and flat caps, women dressed to the nines supping from buckets of Cheeky Vimto and tattooed body builders crunching down vodka and Monster energy.

All of them conversed in a manner demonstrating long-lasting friendships and Cans & Megabus rocked back in his chair, took another sip of his delicious Artois and felt content that he had found a place as pure as Wigan.

How Do I Get There?

Since it’s a lovely midweek, Cans & Megabus can only presume the majority of you are driving so take the A1(M), A685, stop off at Tebay for a snack and a view, and then M6 down to Wigan. Exit at junction 26 and then follow the signs for Wigan town centre and then the DW Stadium. There’s a git big car park at the ground for £5 a car.

For you sat nav shaggers: WN5 0UZ.

If you’re on the train, you’ll arrive at either Wigan North Western or Wigan Wallgate station. It’s no bother which one because they’re pretty close to each other and are both about a 20-minute walk from the ground.

What’s the Ground Like?

Pretty nice actually. Makes you remember all the good times in the Premier League, such as losing 3-0 at the DW Stadium, or losing 1-0 at the DW Stadium, or losing 1-0 again at the DW Stadium. And, of course, those great times in the Championship such as drawing 0-0 at the DW Stadium.

Sunderland fans are housed in the North Stand where there’s room for 5,000. That’s a big allocation.

Yer thirsty?

Ordinarily, Cans & Megabus wouldn’t stoop so low as to recommend a Wetherspoons but as we were so enthralled by the community unity shown all those days ago we have to say The Moon Under Water on Market Place is a must. Now we’ve shook off the shame, here’s a few better pubs.

The Anvil on Dorning Street is great for all you ale shaggers while The Swan & Railway on Wallgate is great for all of you that enjoy confusing pub names. For those of you like a little refinement with your pint then head to John Bull Chop House on Cooper’s Row for a delicious drop of Thwaites. Alternatively, you could enjoy a few craft drops at Wigan Central on the Central Arch next to Wigan Central station.

What’s This Place Like?

Brother, if you like pies, mints and piers without an ocean then you are really, really going to like the town of Wigan.

Tom Walsh