The Fans’ Conference was formed in October 2010. The club’s fan liaison officer Johnny Moore and Pompey Supporters Trust chair Ashley Brown called an initial meeting with Pompey’s many Supporters’ Groups to explore the feasibility of direct communication between fans and the Club. With then owners Portpin remaining at a somewhat alienated distance it seemed to make sense to involve all fan groups that already existed alongside the Pompey Supporters’ Trust in order to give fans a united voice.
Groups involved ranged from Central Branch, Pompey Independent Supporters Association (PISA), Chichester Supporters' Club, London Supporters, the Supporters Advisory Group and SOS Pompey. Online groups included Pompey Online, True Blue Army, Pompey Chimes, Fratton Faithful and Pompey Til I Die websites and forums. They formed a truly diverse grouping of both opinion and purpose.
The aim of the Conference was to discuss all matters that affected the fans’ relationship with the club from the state of the ground to the nature of information made available to fans about the future of the club. Fans hoped to cement a closer relationship with the club as stakeholders rather than customers.
The Fans Conference’s first success was the running of a Fans Day at the end of the 2010/11 Season, raising £2,310 each for Pompey in the Community & Tom Prince Cancer Trust.
The collapse into administration of CSI brought about a financial crisis once more. The Fans Conference became a useful conduit first for administrator Trevor Birch to meet with fans and later for the passing of information about the Trust bid for the club. Information given to Conference gave fans the ability to put the Trust’s case for ownership in the public domain. Conference therefore became a force in the fight for ownership of the club.
It was during this fight that Conference lost one of its strongest advocates with the death of chairman Tony Goodall. The membership voted unanimously to rename Conference in his honour.
With the ownership of the club now in the hands of the Trust and the Presidents, the TGFC has undergone a revamp in order to facilitate the greater involvement of fans in the running of Portsmouth Football Club.
Minutes of recent meetings
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The TGFC Aims and Objectives
- To be an autonomous body providing a meeting point for all Pompey fan groups and stakeholders.
- To have as its chief purpose the facilitation of communication between fans, PCFC staff and the PCFC Board.
- To provide a discussion forum for all issues relevant to stakeholders in PFC as and when they arise.
- To create subgroups of TGFC to meet with the club to discuss operational issues and provide fan input to the club at an operational level.
- To hold, at a minimum, bi-monthly meetings to hear the outcome of subgroup meetings.
- To provide a forum for communication and discussion between fan groups, stakeholders, the Pompey Supporters Trust and the Club on all matters relevant to the fans and the club not covered by the sub-groups.
- To enable representatives of member groups to communicate the discussions at TGFC and its subgroups to their membership on a regular basis.
- To enhance communication between the fan-base and the Pompey Supporters Trust.
To this end the Trust will be a member of conference and be represented on all subgroups where practical.