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Police appeal to derby game fans

PUBLISHED: 10:01 14 April 2009 | UPDATED: 13:40 03 July 2010

Police last night put out a plea for calm to both Norwich and Ipswich fans as they prepare for the derby match in little more than a week.

Officers are appealing to supporters to enjoy the match in Ipswich on Sunday and to behave respectfully and responsibly.

Police last night put out a plea for calm to both Norwich and Ipswich fans as they prepare for the derby match in little more than a week.

Officers are appealing to supporters to enjoy the match in Ipswich on Sunday and to behave respectfully and responsibly.

They said turnstiles and stadium bars will be open from 11.15am for the 12.45pm kick off and it has been agreed that no alcohol will be served at licensed premises outside the stadium before noon.

The operation, overseen by Supt John Everett, will involve more than 300 officers from Suffolk and the British Transport Police.

Supt Everett said Ipswich and Norwich fans have a good reputation across the country in terms of behaviour and it is hoped that fans live up to it.

“This will be an exciting game for both teams. Last year's game was a great success and a recipe in partnership with Ipswich Town Football Club, which will be used again this year.

“We will not tolerate antisocial behaviour, violence, racial chanting, mindless vandalism or any alcohol-fuelled disorder. We will replicate the tactics used in escorting visitors to and from Portman Road and will delay visitors leaving the stadium after the final whistle to prevent any disorder.

“We will continue our use of firm but fair policing to ensure the safety of those attending the game and those members of the public wishing to go about their normal business.”

He said the tactics used may result in some minor delays and may restrict movement in the vicinity of the ground but asked both sets of fans to be patient as they are aimed at ensuring everyone's safety.

The public were asked to be prepared for crowd and traffic congestion and disruption on the day and to avoid the town if not attending the game. Car sharing and the use of public transport are advisable.

Portman Road will not be closed to home fans post match but police encourage supporters to clear the area as soon as possible so they can continue with their policing operation.

Ipswich manager Jim Magilton said: “Derby games are special for players and supporters. Sunday's game should be a cracker so enjoy it and make it an occasion that both clubs can be proud of.”

PC Marc Norman, football intelligence officer for Suffolk police, said: “Our message is simple; enjoy the game, stay onside and don't spoil it for others.”


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