MADNESS frontman Graham ‘Suggs’ McPherson has said he has ‘always loved’ Portsmouth and is looking forward to headlining a gig in the city.
The ska band from Camden are to play an open-air concert at Fratton Park on June 6, the first the football stadium has held for 40 years.
And 4,000 tickets have been sold on the first day they were up for grabs – a record for first day sales compared to all other venues hosting Madness this summer.
Suggs, 54, told The News: ‘Portsmouth is a great place for gigs.
‘I have always loved it and of course it’s brilliant we are playing at the football ground.’
Pompey executives hope the Fratton Park concert will become an annual event, boosting the coffers of the football club as well as providing a new highlight on the city’s music calendar.
Pompey’s head of sponsorship Anna Mitchell said the club was working with the Liz Hobbs Group on organising the Madness concert.
‘Madness are absolutely huge so we are expecting that it’s going to be popular,’ she said.
‘All our efforts are going into it to make sure it is a success.’
Ms Mitchell said three or four other bands will also play at the gig, which will start at 4pm.
Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin said: ‘The number of tickets sold have totally exceeded our expectations of what we would sell on the first day.
‘The demand to watch Madness at Fratton Park has been simply incredible and we are urging Pompey fans to get their tickets booked now to avoid disappointment.’
Tickets for the show cost £55 can be bought online at tickets.portsmouthfc.co.uk or by calling (023) 9277 8559.