Pompey helpers plunged into financial trouble

Supporters Direct, who assisted Pompey and other clubs in remaining in existence, have been plunged into financial trouble following a funding crisis.

Wednesday, 21st September 2016, 1:46 pm
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:23 pm
Pompey Supporters' Trust took over the Fratton Park club in April 2013 Picture: Joe Pepler

According to reports, the organisation, which has helped set-up almost 200 supporters’ trusts in the UK, is struggling to find new revenues and is presently dipping into reserves to meet costs.

Earlier this week, Supporters Direct emailed its members to warn them of ‘ongoing uncertainty over its future funding’.

It receives the vast majority of its income, currently almost £400,000 a year, from the Premier League’s Fans Fund, a £3.5m a year pot made available to supporter organisations.

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Yet in June, the Premier League wrote to Supporters Direct offering £330,000 a year until 2019 subject to cutting costs and merging its ‘back-office operations’ with the FSF and Kick It Out.

The move has cast uncertainty over the organisation, which was served by former Pompey chief executive, David Lampitt, from June 2012 to January 2014.

And Pompey Supporters’ Trust chairman Ashley Brown has praised Supporters Direct’s role in the fans’ successful ownership battle in April 2013.

He said: ‘Supporters Direct were instrumental in everything achieved at Portsmouth in relation to community ownership and, without them, there’s a good chance the club might not to be here today.

‘When the guys got together to form a Trust, help was needed from Supporters Direct and also through troubled times they provided financial, legal and governance help, in addition to advice about fundraising.’