Portsmouth: a city of famous people, sailors and Pompey fans.

I arrived in Portsmouth from London having taken the train from Victoria Station, where in about 2 hours I reached the city, getting out at the station of Southsea. Coming out of the train station and going to the left is Guildhall Square, with its monument to Queen Victoria. Continuing along Guildhall Walk, one arrives at the Ibis Hotel in Winston Churchill Avenue, where one can stay with excellent value for money.
The city of Portsmouth in Hampshire has approximately 190,000 inhabitants, most of whom live in the city that is located on Portsea Island and where the Solent joins the English Channel.
The city boasts a great maritime tradition, with a vital past as the Royal Navy base and for which it suffered heavy bombing throughout the Second World War. Today the port, as well as still being the Royal Navy base, is of great importance for its goods and passenger docks.
Famous people who were born in Portsmouth include Admiral Nelson, hero of the Battle of Trafalgar, and the writer Charles Dickens, whose father was a payroll clerk in the British Navy; today it is possible to visit the writer’s birthplace.
Noteworthy places of interest for tourists include the Historical Dockyard near the harbour, where in a vast complex that is currently being restored, one can visit the Mary Rose Museum, the HMS Victory and HMS Warrior 1860 warships and the D-Day Museum.
The Mary Rose Museum opened in 2013, where the remains of the Mary Rose warship are exhibited, Henry VIII’s flagship raised from the seabed in 1982. One can relive aspects of life on board that have been perfectly reconstructed thanks to the numerous artefacts found, together with the evocative remains of the perfectly reassembled warship.
The architectural design of the museum combines contemporary architecture with a great respect for past history; indeed the museum is located exactly where the ship was constructed back in 1510.
Very close to the Museum is Spinnaker Tower, a 170-metre high tower that was inaugurated in 2005 to celebrate the city’s maritime tradition. It consists of two reinforced concrete pylons that join halfway up to form a single column to which steel sails are attached. From there, you can see the harbour, the city and on a good day, the Isle of Wight.
However, you cannot go to Portsmouth without paying a visit to Fratton Park, the Portsmouth football club’s stadium, especially if it’s a Saturday when the local team plays at home.
Fans of Portsmouth, also known as Pompey supporters, show strong affection for their team despite the fact that in the past 5 years it has gone through a crisis, being gradually relegated from the Premier League to League Two.
To think that in 2013, with a public subscription, the club passed into the hands of the fans, the “Pompey Supporters Trust” and who can now cheer on “their” team, in the true sense of the word, and bring it back to play in the championships where it deserves to be. I suggest you spend some time before the match in the local pubs, where you can understand the pride that the Portsmouth people feel for their city and team #pup.




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