Pompey fans to travel by coach for court battle

AWAY TRIP Pompey fan David Maples at London's High Court to support the club in February 2010. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (100439-7878)
AWAY TRIP Pompey fan David Maples at London's High Court to support the club in February 2010. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (100439-7878)
Samantha Quayle. Picture: Jordan Hampton

Flying start for Pompey with Cardiff swept aside

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FANS are set to pack a coach and show their support for the Pompey Supporters’ Trust at the High Court this week.

National union Unite has provided supporters’ campaign group SOS Pompey with a coach to take passionate fans to London for one of the most important court battles in Pompey’s history.

On Thursday and Friday, a judge will decide how much Fratton Park is worth – the last remaining hurdle in front of the supporters’ trust.

The fans’ group values the ground at £2.75m while Balram Chainrai’s Portpin, which has a fixed charge over Fratton Park, wants around £11m for it.

Earlier this week, the trust said it hoped Portpin would reach a deal before the court hearing to save on expensive legal costs.

But fans will show their solidarity on Thursday as the coach leaves Fratton Park for London at 7am. The travel arrangements have been organised by SOS Pompey members Carl Paddon and Brendon Bone.

Mr Paddon said: ‘Unite approached us and said they would like to help. When I spoke to a representative, it was like they wanted to thank us.

‘It’s not about SOS Pompey but the community sticking together because that’s what we are going to need if the trust is successful.’

SOS Pompey member Bob Beech said members had worked with the Metropolitan Police to set up a space outside court for fans to safely congregate in.

He added: ‘This is the last push now. It is the culmination of three years of hard work by a lot of people.

‘We will show our support for the trust and show the court how much Pompey means to the city as a whole.

‘This is not something we are just turning up to making a nuisance of ourselves. We will have banners and we won’t interfere with anything in court.

‘We are just showing our support for the trust and Pompey.’