Love Your Local: The Newcome Arms

LOCAL The Newcome Arms. Picture: Mick Young (122148-06)
LOCAL The Newcome Arms. Picture: Mick Young (122148-06)
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Though the future of Pompey is looking bleak, the spirit of the club remains alive and well at the Newcome Arms.

Just a short walk from Fratton Park, the pub has an array of Pompey scarfs, shirts and other true blue army memorabilia hanging above the bar.

Newcome Arms landlord Nigel Tresidder with his wife Brenda.

Newcome Arms landlord Nigel Tresidder with his wife Brenda.

There’s even photos on the walls of former Pompey owners Milan Mandaric and Sacha Gaydamak socialising with staff in the pub, although the date of when they were taken is unknown.

Landlord Nigel Tresidder has been in charge of the Newcome Road boozer with wife Brenda for 16 and a half years.

The pair are devout followers of the club and Nigel, 64, is the chairman of Pompey Central Branch Supporters Club.

‘We’re a Pompey-mad pub,’ Nigel said.

‘The level of spirit for the club here is immense.

‘It’s proof that we can get through whatever hits us, liquidation or not.

‘Of course, we would be devastated if the club folded but I strongly believe it will carry on in one shape or another.

‘We have a strong supporters’ trust which has come up with a bid to save the club. I hope that will go through.’

On match days fans stop by at the pub on their way to Fratton Park and tuck into curry and chips, bacon rolls and sausage rolls.

And away fans also go down well at the pub.

Nigel said: ‘We welcome everybody, and we’re particularly friendly with Wolves, Bolton and Liverpool supporters.

‘It’s important that everyone gets along.

‘I rarely get any trouble in this pub.

‘It’s an old-fashioned boozer with loads of character.’

The Victorian pub has always retained the same name and it was originally owned by The Pike Spicer Brewery.

Now under the ownership of Punch Taverns, the pub does its fair share for charity.

Punters are being encouraged to put their loose change in a baby bottle on the bar – and once it’s filled up the cash will go towards either the children’s unit at Queen Alexandra Hospital, in Cosham, or St Mary’s Hospital, in Milton.

The Newcome Arms also likes to make big occasions a communal affair.

A kids’ party is thrown on Christmas Day and the pub plans to hold another one this year.

Brenda, who grew up in Portsea, said: ‘I absolutely love this pub.

‘We’re like one big happy family.’

MEET THE LANDLORD

FOOTBALL-LOVING landlord Nigel Tresidder became a Pompey fan in 1968 – and he’s never looked back.

But his passion for the club and the city he lives in doesn’t stem from his upbringing – he grew up in Penzance, Cornwall.

He joined an army infantry regiment called Somerset and Cornwall Light Infantry in 1963 before he married his first wife and moved to Portsmouth.

He then met his current wife of 26 years, Brenda.

The couple had a desire to work in the pub trade and after doing shifts at The Wicor Mill, in Portchester, and The Castle Tavern, in Somers Town, they decided to take over the Newcome Arms.

‘We fell in love with the place,’ Nigel said.

‘Both of us knew what we wanted to do and Brenda is a Portsea woman through and through so she knew the area well.

‘I started supporting Pompey when I moved to the city,’ he said.

‘It’s the only club I’ve truly supported. Before that I used to follow a few but never seriously.

‘We’ve really enjoyed our time at the pub.

‘It’s not been easy at times and it’s hard work.

‘But the locals are brilliant. Everyone gets on well.

‘Though I can’t see us staying here for another 16 years I can certainly see us staying for some time yet.’

Brenda added: ‘I can’t see myself working at another pub after this one. Once we leave here that’s it.’

The pub holds barbecues and live music, disco and karaoke evenings on a regular basis.