Traffic plans designed to get people out of Sixfields and Franklin’s Gardens quickly have been labelled a success by organisers, despite some people still being stuck in jams almost an hour after the final whistle.
Both the Cobblers and Saints kicked-off at 3pm on Saturday, causing large traffic jams between Franklin’s Gardens and Sixfields as fans tried to get home just after 5pm.
Saints fans seemed to suffer worst in the traffic, with some still queuing at almost 6pm.
But Chris Wearmouth from the rugby club said the traffic had flowed well compared to previous dates when the two clubs’ matches had clashed.
He said: “Having people queue for up to an hour is a much better result than we’ve had at previous clashes. In September, people were having to queue for a lot longer than that.
“And considering our car parks sometimes used to take up to 90 minutes to empty on days when the Cobblers weren’t playing as well, I think for all the traffic to be clear in an hour is quite a result.”
But fans sitting in their cars were not so upbeat.
Cobblers fan Jim Boulton said: “The plan is clearly not working, it’s ridiculous that people are having to wait so long to get out.
“It just needs a bit of common sense, I don’t understand why one of the clubs couldn’t have just kicked-off 15 minutes later than the other.
“It can’t be that difficult to sort out. This is just organised chaos.”
The traffic also hit people passing through the area who were accidentally caught up in the queues.
Adrian Hassall, who works on the Ross Road Industrial Estate, got stuck in the Saints traffic on his way home.
He said: “It’s ridiculous, they should have been able to see this coming.”
The traffic leaving Franklin’s Gardens met Cobblers fans leaving Sixfields at the roundabout next to the Walter Tull memorial, causing long tailbacks both along Edgar Mobbs Way and up through Sixfields.