Pompey chief reveals Fratton Park vision

Tornante president Andy Redman Picture: Joe Pepler
Tornante president Andy Redman Picture: Joe Pepler
Blackpool's Kelvin Mellor , right, battles Sandro Semedo for the ball. Picture: PA Images

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Andy Redman has unveiled his 30,000-seater Fratton Park vision.

But he has stressed the need for patience as Tornante thoroughly explore all options to enhance the club’s future.

Fratton Park

Fratton Park

The Blues’ owners are in the process of appointing architects to head ground development plans, whether that entails remaining at Fratton Park or relocating.

In addition, Tornante’s David Fields has been flown in from America to oversee the stadium project.

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WATCH: Previous plans announced by Pompey
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Remaining at the club’s 118-year-old home is ‘highly likely’ according to Tornante’s president Redman, who also sits on the club board.

We will want the ability to expand to at least 30,000. Simply because, if you think about our ambition, you don’t want to be a small club at the point where you are successful

Andy Redman

And there are ambitions to revamp Fratton Park.

Redman told The News: ‘We are being extremely thorough – we are an extremely thorough group.

‘It took us four years to ultimately get to the acquisition of Pompey after starting this project to buy a football club. It won’t take us four years to do the first work at the stadium, but we prefer to be extremely thorough.

‘The scale of Fratton Park is 21,000 seats, with only 18,900 allowed into the stadium on any game day.

‘Expanding it is part of the objective, absolutely, but it’s also not like we believe we need a 45,000-seat stadium.

‘There has to be a bit of additional seating.

‘For instance, fulfilling health and safety improvements in a way it opens up to 21,000 as soon as possible – but getting beyond that is absolutely important.

‘We will want the ability to expand to at least 30,000. Simply because, if you think about our ambition, you don’t want to be a small club at the point where you are successful.

‘On the other hand, the worst thing you can do is overexpand and be a stadium which doesn’t rock like Fratton Park.

‘You will not see us expand overnight in a way that you lose that atmosphere, that would be our biggest mistake.’

Tornante continue to research means of raising capacity.

And Redman believes there are a number of realistic ideas to consider.

He added: ‘Increasing capacity is pretty straightforward. You have four unused corners, while the North Stand could either be entirely redeveloped or you could tighten its layout.

‘There’s a conversation in England about safe standing, so there’s a number of ways.

‘The Milton End is an interesting case of being harder to expand if you don’t open it moving upwards.

‘The South Stand is the hardest to develop and also the most classic.

‘We will have a hard time getting rid of any element of a stand which possesses an Archibald Leitch infrastructure because it really fits where we are heading towards having an historic English feel. That stand has it.

‘There is no timeframe, especially when you talk about the full finished project being maybe as big as 30,000.

‘That’s a long way off.’