Portsmouth fan becomes oldest mascot as she celebrates 50th birthday at Fratton Park
SINCE she was a little girl Pompey fanatic Lisa Stonier has always wanted to walk out on the hallowed Fratton Park turf as a mascot.
On Saturday, to mark her 50th birthday, the dream came true before Pompey’s League One match with Scunthorpe United, which they won 2-0.
The dream was made sweeter after Lisa had no idea she would be a mascot for the game after her family pulled strings to make it happen.
It meant Lisa now has the unusual honour of being the oldest mascot to walk out on the pitch – with most mascots tending to be children.
Natalie Edwards, Lisa's sister, arranged the gesture – which took four months of organisation with Pompey.
Lisa, from Gosport, said: ‘It was the best day ever. One that was a total surprise and one I won’t forget – I’m glad I had a few drinks first. I had no idea at all it had been planned. I thought we were going for a meal in the hospitality area.
‘The first I knew about it was when a note was passed to me. I said “no, I can’t do it”. I was so nervous.
‘But I knew it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity so I went for it.
‘To walk out on the hallowed turf with the roar of the Pompey crowd and the magic of Fratton Park was something very special. I had to take my heels off and wore my Pompey shirt.
‘I got to meet the players and manager Kenny Jackett who were all lovely. The club was amazing too.’
Lisa, a Pompey season ticket holder who has been going to games since she was three, laughed at her dubious honour of being the oldest ever Pompey mascot.
‘The crowd were great too. They were probably wondering why there was an old woman walking out as a mascot alongside eight-year-olds.
‘I did have a word in the referee’s ear before the game to make sure he gave us all the 50-50 decisions to avoid upsetting me.
‘It is certainly something unique to be the oldest ever mascot.
‘I had 25 of my friends there and all my family so it was a very special day that I will always remember.’
Lisa’s love for Pompey is shown by her naming one of her children ‘Harriet Milan’ after Harry Redknapp and former Pompey owner Milan Mandaric.
The Gosport family are season ticket holders.