Plymouth Pavilions plays home to the Plymouth Raiders. Today was my second trip to this venue and it wasn’t a great experience (disappointing given that I enjoyed my first visit).
It started badly, when the woman on reception gave us some attitude because they hadn’t received the guest list on time.
A technical problem then meant that the game was delayed by 30 minutes and when it did start there was no game clock or score board and only one shot clock. The announcer was supposed to be keeping everyone up to date but as he doesn’t usually need to provide that level of detail he was out of his comfort zone.
This caused problems for both teams, most noticeably the Lions at the end of the second quarter when they did not know how long they had left to put the shot up. It also caused confusion for fans.
This was obviously an unfortunate and unforeseen technical issue but the lack of back up plan did make the whole situation feel quite amateur.
The venue is fairly big. The seats are padded and fairly comfortable for a basketball venue. It is also used as a theatre and music venue so the seating is only on two sides (both sidelines).
One of those sides is known as the stage. At either end there is a group of three seats offset from the others in the row. I would not recommend these seats (and to be fair I don’t think they have them on sale) as you have a limited view (or no view) of one of the baskets.
The venue is fairly easy to get to by car and has plenty of parking, though be warned the car park charges and you will need to have pound coins on you as they don’t accept cards or notes. We were there early and paid £4 for six hours.
There is apparently a local multi-storey car park that does accept cards etc but I can’t say I noticed this suggesting that it isn’t as convenient as the Pavilions’ car park.
It’s close to the city centre so you could also use trains to get to Plymouth but you might struggle to get home again after a Sunday evening game. (Games tend to be on Sundays due to the venue being heavily used at other times.)
I noticed a small stall selling Raiders merchandise but if you are an away fan this probably is not of much interest.
As this venue has other uses it does offer a good range. There is a coffee shop, a bar and the usual range of hotdogs etc on sale.
I’m not sure how the prices compare to other venues but given the prices in Plymouth generally I would imagine they are good value.