"I have been in a few squads and not quite got on the bench," he told whufc.com. "It has been good to go away with the squad - they are a great bunch of lads. They always give you confidence and pat you on the back. To get on the bench against Arsenal was a great thing.
"It was a dream to look out and see 60,000 people out there and you're on the bench. It was brilliant to see the new stadium. Obviously it is disappointing that we lost but it was a great experience. I phoned my dad and my brother late and they both come up to give me some support which is good. They are West Ham fans as well - they made it but they were disappointed we lost."
Former academy teammate James Collison made his debut on the day and Tomkins added: "We have got a good set of lads at the club, a good Academy with good young players. He played well as well which will have done him the world of good - hopefully there will be plenty more to come."