Perhaps Portsmouth Football Club's most famous fan. Click here to view The Pompey Chimes page about John Westwood
Perhaps Portsmouth Football Club's most unsung hero. Click here to view The Pompey Chimes page about Barry Harris
January 8, 2013
Portsmouth Football Club would like to nominate Barry Harris for the Unsung Hero prize at the 2013 Football League Awards.
Barry has worked voluntarily at the club for more than 60 years since becoming the Pompey Sailor at the age of eight in 1952.
He currently works voluntarily as a kit assistant to Kev McCormack.
His roles have many and varies down the years – from the sailor who walked around the pitch and rallied fans before matches to the reserve team physio in the 1970s and 80s and first team caterer under Jim Smith in the 90s.
Whatever his posting, a passion for all things Pompey has resonated through his life.
If you have any memories or photographs that you would like to share – or simply a message for Barry – then please email [email protected] or post to Portsmouth Football Club, Fratton Park, Frogmore Road, Portsmouth, PO4 8RA.
PHOTO: CELEBRATION October 18, 2012 Pompey Supporters Club members, left to right, Dan Hussey, Nigel Tresidder (central branch chairman), Dave Philpott and Paul Banks (away travel officer). Picture: Mick Young
Published in the News on Wednesday 22 August 2012 11:50
IT’S what Peter would have wanted.
Those are the heartfelt words of the widow of Pompey hero Peter Harris after she pledged her backing to the Pompey Supporters’ Trust.
Sylvia Harris, who was married to the legendary winger for 48 years before he died in January 2003 aged 77, popped her cheque in the post amid hopes the fans’ group can take over.
Mrs Harris, 80, who lives on Hayling Island, says she will do all she can to try to save the club.
She said: ‘Peter was a one-club man.
‘He had 15 years with Pompey and was very loyal.
‘If he were here, the first thing he would do would be to put his hand in his pocket and do anything to try and save the club.
‘Thank goodness he is not here to see the state they are in at the moment.’
Mrs Harris said she was given the idea to pledge towards the trust’s takeover bid by friend Harry Kempster.
She recalls that Mr Kempster, in his younger years, was admitted to hospital and asked a doctor what the Pompey score was after rousing from surgery.
News of his post-treatment request made its way to Fratton Park and led to a visit from Peter and fellow Pompey icon Duggie Reid.
‘Harry said some time ago that the club was struggling and asked if there was anything I could do,’ added Mrs Harris.
‘I think Peter would have been pleased with anything that could be done to keep the club going.
‘I had a lovely letter from Milan Mandaric saying I was welcome at Fratton Park any time.
‘But I just couldn’t force myself to go and watch the players come out of the tunnel knowing Peter wasn’t one of them.
‘It would be tremendous if the trust take over.
‘This might just spur people to say they loved watching Peter play as a player, and if he wanted to do it, let’s do it.’
Trust spokesman Colin Farmery said: ‘This is a fantastic gesture by Sylvia and the trust is extremely grateful.
‘It just goes to show how deep the roots of the Pompey family go.‘The word legend is used too lightly but Peter was certainly a Pompey legend and Sylvia’s gesture is a fantastic one that we hope will encourage people to pledge because ultimately that’s what’s going to help the club.
Published in the News on Saturday 21 April 2012 04:58
John Wigginton in Crete, where he now lives
HIS great-grandfather was a founding member of Portsmouth Football Club.
Now lifelong Blues fan John Wigginton has expressed his desire to save the team so close to his heart by pledging his support to the Pompey Supporters’ Trust share scheme.
He was happy to donate £100 to the initiative in the hope of securing a full share for £1,000 should the trust launch a takeover bid.
Mr Wigginton, who now lives on the Greek island of Crete, is the great grandson of William Wigginton – one of the group of businessmen that founded the club in 1898 – so he jumped at the chance to preserve his family tradition.
He said: ‘Even if I did not have this connection I would still support any scheme to save the club I love and which means so much to me.
‘The future is not going to be easy whatever happens but at least there will be a future.
‘I was there standing in the rain on near empty terraces when we slumped down into the old Fourth Division but the true Pompey supporters never gave up hope and I believe that passion will help the club rise once again.’
His first match at Fratton Park was as a six-year-old watching a 2-2 draw with Wolves on April 3, 1953.
Mr Wigginton recalls sitting on a his father’s shoulders in the Fratton End and seeing Peter Harris and Jack Froggatt netting for the Blues.
‘I fell in love with the game and club that day and despite living away from Portsmouth most of my life that love has never diminished’, he said.
‘After leaving Portsmouth as a young man I have worked and lived all over the country and world missing far too many games in the process.
‘I returned to live in Portsmouth 11 years ago and for five years up to my move to Crete I had a season ticket in the North Stand and belonged to the supporters’ club enjoying many trips to away games.
‘I’ve posted by deposit and implore all Pompey fans to do likewise – there is nothing to lose and all to gain.
‘I especially encourage other ex-pats living around the world to get behind the scheme.
‘We cannot get to many games and thereby boost gate income, so let’s help the finances at the same time by joining the scheme.’
To find out how you can sign up to the trust’s share scheme, visit communitypompey.co.uk
Post-match celebrations at the Keepmoat Stadium April 14, 2012 (from the Pompey Pages)
Following Pompey’s 4-3 win away at Doncaster Rovers after an amazing comeback, fans refused to leave the ground singing ‘We Will Leave When We See Appy’ before being greeted by the Portsmouth manager who applauded the Pompey fans before trying on a number of the fancy dress hats thrown at him. See the video below.
Southampton 2 Portsmouth 2 Pompey Fans celebrate David Norris's goal and the final whistle.
From the News
I'M IN! Chris Roberts who is donating money to the Pompey Supporters Trust share scheme. Picture: Steve Reid
DIE-HARD Pompey fan Chris Roberts has his employers to thank for giving him the chance to save the club he loves.
Snows BMW Portsmouth, in Eastern Road, has given the dad-of-five enough overtime to help him cobble together cash to buy a Pompey Supporters’ Trust community share.
He has already pledged £100 to back the cause and hopes to be given the chance to acquire a share for £1,000.
Mr Roberts said: ‘I’ve pledged because I don’t want to see the club go under. I’ve been going since the 80s – it’s a community club and there’s no other fan base like it.
‘A fans’ takeover would bring more transparency but there’s a lot of work to be done with it.
‘If you can find the money anywhere, go out and pledge £100 to keep the club going. ‘
To find out how you can pledge your backing the to the trust’s share scheme, visit
From the News Published on Tuesday 10 April 2012 08:19
THEY’VE dished out curries to Pompey fans, players and staff over the years – and now two brothers want to give something back.
Forhad Ahmed and his brother Jaf run the Akash Indian restaurant in Albert Road, Southsea, and have been regulars at Fratton Park since they were too short to see over the barriers. So they didn’t need to be asked twice to support their team by pledging £100 each towards the Pompey Supporters’ Trust community share scheme.
It calls on fans to pledge a minimum of £100 to gauge opinion over a fans-backed takeover bid before having the chance to acquire a full share for £1,000.
Forhad said he and his brother were pledging because they couldn’t bear to see the club they grew up supporting go under. ‘We were born in Portsmouth and the football club is very close to our hearts,’ he said. ‘We used to go to Fratton Park when it was all terraces and take milk crates to stand on because we were too short to see.
‘Working with the restaurant, and in my other job as a photographer, I’ve had a close relationship with the players, the staff and ex-staff members. They come into the restaurant quite a bit. ‘They even brought the FA Cup here and that helped raise £5,000 for a Bangladeshi charity.
‘It brought a lot of good to a community which is very far away. It’s where my mum and dad are from. They will be able to use that money for an incubator because they don’t have one at the moment. ‘So Pompey winning the cup has actually saved a lot of babies in Bangladesh.’
Forhad said he that he hoped the trust’s plan for community ownership could put some power back in the hands of fans. He said: ‘Most definitely we need an actual loyal fan in charge who is not in it for the money, because in previous days we were none the wiser about what was going on. ‘Even the second time round when things went bad we were the last to find out. ‘We should be more aware and it should be more open with what it actually going on.’
The restaurateur added that while £1,000 might be a lot for a family or individual person to donate, many medium-sized businesses should be able to afford it.
‘We have supported the team life long and it is a significant part of our community,’ he said. ‘Me and my brother were more than happy to pledge and more businesses could do the same. ‘It’s hard for an individual in these difficult times to give that much, but for a business £1,000 might not be too much to ask. ‘If more businesses could get involved, we could have a real chance of doing this. I have a good feeling about it.
‘After all we all benefit on match days when more people come to Southsea. I’ve had customers from as far away as Derby come into the restaurant after games. ‘But more than the money we want the club to survive and we don’t want to keep going through this over and over again.’
Full details of the community buy-out initiative are available at communitypompey.co.uk
Report From the News April 6, 2012
SHE’S followed Pompey for more than six decades. So Sheila Oatley didn’t think twice in joining hundreds of others in a bid to buy her beloved club.
The 75-year-old, of Fairfield Avenue in Fareham, has donated £100 to the Pompey Supporters’ Trust community share scheme.
The initiative calls on fans to pledge an initial £100 to find out if a community buyout of Pompey could be possible.
If enough fans pledge £100, they will have the chance to buy a full share for £1,000.
Sheila, a season ticket holder in the upper North Stand, has been watching her beloved Blues for more than 60 years.
She said: ‘I did it because I want to help and want Pompey to survive.
‘It would break my heart if they ceased to exist – it’s not worth thinking about.
‘The scheme is a great idea. I will be pledging £100 first and if it goes ahead I will have one share.
‘I’m a pensioner and cannot afford any more.’
Her love affair with Pompey started when her father Albert took her to Fratton Park to watch Pompey fall to a 2-0 defeat against Sunderland.
They travelled over from the Isle of Wight – her birthplace – for the match and, although it was raining, Sheila caught the Pompey bug and has been an ardent fan ever since.
Her favourite ever player was the legendary Len Phillips, who passed away last year.
The checkout operator, who works at the Asda supermarket in Fareham, said she will be dipping into her savings to support the trust’s scheme.
She said: ‘I’m well-known as a Pompey fan around Asda.
‘I work part-time and when Pompey play on Sundays they are very helpful in swapping my shifts or giving me the day off.’
She added: ‘It’s really important for me that Pompey survive.
‘I am very hopeful this scheme will work.
‘I don’t know if the fans could run it completely on their own but hopefully we could do it in partnership with someone else.
‘But please God let it happen.
‘It takes a lot of money to run a football club these days and to get it up and running.
‘It’s difficult to say all fans should do it because lots cannot afford it but they can get a syndicate together and have a share, that would be a nice idea.’
Sheila said she will be travelling to St Mary’s Stadium tomorrow for the derby clash with Southampton, branding it a ‘special’ fixture.
Not only has she pledged her support to save Pompey, the committed fan has always dreamed of investing millions of pounds into her team.
She added: ‘I always say to my brother in America that if I won the Euro Millions lottery I would put £5m into Pompey straight away!
‘I don’t need that much money at my age.
‘I’m an ardent supporter – I go to away games and as many matches as possible.’
HOW TO GET INVOLVED
FANS wanting to take part in the trust’s scheme need to make a £100 pledge as it gauges support for a fans bid.
If enough sign up, they will be asked to commit to a share for £1,000 as the trust makes its takeover bid.
The money will be put into a secure account, but will be returned minus a 2.5 per cent charge if fans opt out at any time or a takeover attempt is not made.
Trust spokesman Scott Mclachlan said: ‘Whatever money you put into the account, you will be charged 2.5 per cent if you want it returned.
‘It’s only £100 to have a look into the share scheme.’
To find out how to sign up, visit communitypompey.co.uk
BIG FAN Sylvia Tooes with her Pompey shirt and scarf.
March 12, 2012 From the News
SHE may be weeks away from her 100th birthday but Pompey fan Sylvia Tooes is still as passionate as ever for her beloved Blues.
Fratton Park season ticket holder Mrs Tooes, 99, hits the magnificent milestone on May 15 and has called on her fellow fans to keep the faith through Pompey’s latest plight.
Her love for the club blossomed after her Pompey-following husband Bill Tooes, a former city councillor and MBE, passed away in 1992.
She has been attending home games ever since with her grandson Richard Thompson, 52, and 11-year-old great-grandson TJ.
She savours fond memories of watching Pompey lift the FA Cup at Wembley Stadium in 2008, and returning to the famous ground again two years later for the final against Chelsea.
Mrs Tooes, who was a bus conductor during the Second World War, said: ‘I enjoy going to games and the atmosphere when Fratton Park is full.
‘I wear a telescopic lens because I’m partially sighted and listen to the game on my Walkman.
‘I have a cushion for my seat too. I wrap up when it’s cold so I look like the Michelin Man!’
Although she cannot remember the first game she watched, Mrs Tooes has a soft spot for former players Matty Taylor and Gary O’Neil.
‘I will always stick by the club and I am just sorry all this is going on,’ she said.
‘Fans should fill every game at Fratton Park!
‘If everyone gave £10 to the club, it would be a great help, but can people afford it? Money is tight for everyone but I would be happy to do it.
‘It’s something I’m passionate about and I want to see the club survive.
‘How many more years can I go? That’s the million-dollar question. TJ says I’m going to live until 130!
‘My message to the fans is to continue supporting the club and Play Up Pompey!’
Her son Brian Thompson, 77, lives in Cyprus but regularly returns to the UK to watch games with his mother.
He said: ‘She is quite a remarkable woman.
‘I think she must be one of the oldest season ticket holders at Fratton Park. When I go to the games with them, we almost double the years Pompey have been in existence!’
Meanwhile fans are continuing efforts to pack Fratton Park for the Bristol City match on Saturday through the Pay4aPal incentive. The scheme, which was launched by the Pompey Supporters Trust and Pompey’s 12th Man campaign, calls on fans to buy tickets for fellow supporters who do not usually go to games.
Trust spokesman Scott Mclachlan said: ‘Fans’ generosity through Pay4aPal has made a real difference to people’s lives through the power of Pompey.
‘We already have a great start to our total for Bristol City through online donations from fans like Sue Till and Viv Goward who, while selling 50/50 tickets around the ground, have collected £1,000 from fans through bucket donations.’
Article from the News February 18, 2012
IF YOUR name was Birch, the High Court in London was a good place to be yesterday.
Ollie Birch, no relation to Pompey’s new administrator, emerged with huge relief from the Rolls Building, off Fleet Street, his Blues’ scarf proudly held aloft.
The 21-year-old Fratton Park season ticket holder from Tonbridge, Kent, had taken a day’s holiday to sit through the tense hearing which decided the club’s future.
He said: ‘Everybody thought it was a fait accompli that Mr Andronikou would be appointed administrator, but the judge obviously had other ideas.
‘I’m more than happy with the result. It is a very positive outcome when you consider what might have happened.’
He added: ‘We’ve got a fresh start with a new administrator who can really look into what has been going on at the club with a fresh pair of eyes.’
Jo Collins, the former chairman of the Portsmouth Supporters’ Trust, who also attended the hearing, said: ‘This really was a good day for the little man.
‘The judge took into account all the small businesses and ordinary people who have been subsidising the club for years.
‘Perhaps the mess will finally get sorted.’
TRIBUTES have been paid after the death of Tony Goodall, who was a key figure in setting up Pompey fan groups.
The 49-year-old passed away in hospital early on Saturday morning after suffering a stroke two weeks ago.
He had been taken to Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham, before being transferred to Southampton General Hospital.
Mr Goodall, from Old Portsmouth, had worked as a senior executive officer in Whale Island.
He was a well-known and popular figure among Pompey supporters for his tireless work on their behalf.
He was spokesman and co-ordinator for the Pompey Independent Supporters Association (Pisa).
Barry Dewing, Pisa member and close friend, 49, said: ‘I have known him for about 30 years and he loved the city and the football club.’
Mr Goodall was also a founder member of the Pompey Supporters’ Trust.
His close friend Tony Chamberlain, 47, of Lee-on-the-Solent, said: ‘He was a great person.
‘He was a fun-loving person and lived his life to the fullest.
‘He was always there to help other people and will be missed.’
His passion for Pompey saw him chair the most recent fans’ conference, when administrator Trevor Birch met supporter groups and bodies.
Mr Birch said: ‘It’s incredibly sad news.
‘My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.
‘I remember him sitting in the front row and the first meeting and it was clear he cared greatly for the club and he will be sorely missed.’
A spokesman for Portsmouth Football Club said: ‘Everyone at the club was shocked and saddened to hear about Tony’s death.
‘As a prominent member of Pisa and the trust, he did a lot of great work on behalf of all fans.
‘Tony was well known to many members of staff at Pompey and we will miss seeing him at Fratton Park.
‘Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.
‘May he rest in peace.’
Mr Goodall is survived by sons Nick and Sam.
February 21, 2012 article from the Pompey Trust
One of the Fathers of the PST passes away
Jim Riordan was very much involved in the inception of the Pompey Supporters Trust back in 2010 and probably was discussing it even well before.
He worked with the Steering Committee and was a cheque signatory until the first Board took up its duties. He was a much loved and respected Pompey Fan and we will miss him.
There is an excellent obituary in the Guardian HERE
He is also featured in an interesting Last Word on BBC Radio 4 HERE
RIP Comrade Jim