We used to have a ball going to the VFA finals at the Junction, for all the sorts of reasons those in favour of our move back there have mentioned.
Back in those days we'd go to most of the VFA finals because of the closer connection people had to the game. Some blokes would go to watch someone they worked with, some would go because of geographic ties to the VFA side, some would go to watch blokes who'd moved on from their VFL side, some would go for the day out (and the venue certainly helped...some very big post game evenings were had in the plethora of options nearby) and others would go 'cos they just liked the footy played.
The crowds were good, but not so big you couldn't engage with those on the ground. Like the part time night manager of our local establishment - he had about 27 jobs, one of them being a VFA umpire. The pre-game warm ups enabled some very humorous engagements.
And, you could get on the telly, too, if you were loud enough. Con's namesake was a particular target when he played for Sandy. The bugger used to nick smokes off people like me in the social club after games at Moorabbin (and at the Masters at Huntingdale).
Lines like "why don't you buy your own smokes Gor......., you thieving bast***?" delivered during the warm up laps, would not only get a smile and an upright thumb from the thieving bast***, but also questions the next day from those at work to confirm their recognition of the voice yelling it out while they were watching the day before.
Loved those days, loved the Junction.
And, it wasn't much worse than a lot of other VFL grounds when the Roy Boys played there, either. From memory, it was the fire risk rating of the old stands, and what it would have cost to bring them up to standard (given the heritage status) that made a significant contribution to the decision to move spectators away. Plus, the VFL were heading towards becoming the AFL, always wanted another new stadium and ground consolidation was underway to help the justification for that new spending.
The only risk I can see in us moving back is getting tagged as nomads by some media predators who require easy targets to earn a $. But, where we're moving is a return, not just another move, so the positive spin should be a pretty simple job.
'I have no new illusions, and I have no old illusions' - Vladimir Putin, Geneva, June 2021