Fan recollections of the Blues’ FA Cup wins in 1939 and 2008 were the focus of a special Memories Morning event at Fratton Park, attended by local schoolchildren.
Organised by the Pompey History Society and Pompey in the Community, around 30 Year Five pupils from Cottage Grove Primary School were invited to come along and interview some of the club’s older supporters.
These included 99-year-old John Jenkins MBE, whose first game was in 1928 and who also attended the 1939 FA Cup final, when the Blues lifted the famous trophy for the first time.
Also taking part and sharing some of their memories were former Fratton stars Alan Knight and Ray Crawford.
The event was part of a Premier League Charitable Fund project to promote interaction between older fans and more diverse parts of the community.
Richard Wilson, who manages a database of older supporters for the history society, said: “The room buzzed with lively conversation, close questioning and much interest, with the children taking notes from which to write-up articles.
“The session provided a rich and enjoyable learning experience for all participants and passed all too quickly.
"The room buzzed with lively conversation, close questioning and much interest."
“Further similar sessions are planned for the future on a collaborative basis based on the undoubted success of the event.”
One of the participants was Cyril Saunders. He said: “The event was a learning experience for both the young and the old. I was most impressed by how well behaved the children were and the interesting questions that they asked – they were a credit to both their parents and to their school.”
Clare Martin, CEO of Pompey in the Community, added: “The workshop was a real learning experience for everyone involved.
“Some of the older fans and players I’ve known for years, but their heritage, their first Pompey experience and their special memories I knew nothing about. It was fascinating!”
Having conducted the interviews, the children returned to the classroom to write up their stories, which will feature in The PUP – PitC’s matchday programme aimed at youngsters – between now and the end of the season.
The history society will also feature some of the accounts on the Pompey Voices website.
Colin Farmery, who chairs the society, as well as heading up history and archiving projects at the club, said: “The society are always looking to hear from older supporters who have memories they would like to share for posterity.”
If you are a Pompey fan over the age of 60 who would like to register your memories with the society by initially completing a short questionnaire, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or write to the Pompey History Society, Fratton Park, Frogmore Road, Portsmouth, PO4 8RA.