Planning chiefs to decide future of Portsmouth’s iconic Fratton Park floodlights

The process of removing Fratton Park’s iconic floodlights will begin on Thursday.

Wednesday, 22nd May 2019, 12:21 pm
The future of Fratton Park's floodlights will be discussed on Thursday. Picture: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Pompey’s application to transfer the disused floodlight pylon from the north-west corner of the ground is to be heard by planning chiefs on May 23.

However, the proposal has slightly altered from that previously put forward in March.

The lattice floodlight column will now no longer offer light once relocated to the North stand car park.

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The future of Fratton Park's floodlights will be discussed on Thursday. Picture: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Instead, illumination will be attached to the back of the North stand, covering that area.

Meanwhile, the remaining three Fratton Park floodlight pylons will also be removed this summer, although not preserved.

It will leave the 57-year-old column proposed for the North stand car park as the sole reminder of their long Pompey association.

Although inactive, that floodlight, which was introduced in October 1962, will instead purely serve as a nod towards Fratton history, albeit in its proposed new home outside the stadium.

The planning application will be discussed at the Development Control Committee at Portsmouth Guildhall.

According to documents lodged on May 14, assisting with Pompey’s ongoing ground development is Councillor Donna Jones, holding the position of Strategic Stadium Development Consultant.

Meanwhile, the proposals detail the relocation of the floodlight to the north-east side of the car park, with its 41m height reduced by 7m to 34m.

All lamps will be removed, although retaining the ‘rectangular-shaped headframe’.

Underneath the pylon, a 2m-high steel fence is to be constructed in order to ‘secure the column and to prevent access by unauthorised persons’.

The planning application also details intention to ‘relocate telecommunications antennae from the existing south-east and south-west stadium floodlights to the newly-sited tower’.

And the documentation stresses the importance of retaining one of their iconic floodlight pylons.

It states: ‘Consequently, the club wish to retain the area's rich football heritage by relocating one of the existing floodlight columns into the North car park.

‘While it is proposed to remove the light bulbs from the rectangular head of the column, the structure would retain its iconic shape and profile, acting as a visual reference point to fans making their way to the ground.

‘It is accepted that the floodlights are an iconic part of the city landscape and are synonymous with the football club.

‘Although there would only be one column, not four, and it would be sited outside the stadium, the justification for the retention and relocation is considered to be a reasonable one, enabling the club to retain a part of its sporting heritage whilst conforming with modern standards and requirements with new lighting in the stadium.’