Police are ready for the Devon Derby

News Desk
Authored by News Desk
Posted Thursday, April 13, 2023 - 11:29pm

Officers will be present throughout the day to ensure a safe matchday

Police are planning for the Devon derby with Exeter City taking on Plymouth Argyle at St James’ Park this Saturday 15 April, with a midday kick-off.

With Plymouth Argyle in the hunt for automatic promotion to the Championship, and Exeter City looking to cap an excellent return to League One for the Grecians with a win over their local rivals, the match, which is an all-ticket affair, has already sold out.

Superintendent Tom Holmes, the officer in charge of the operation, said: “We are preparing to welcome several thousand football fans to Exeter for this game and are planning with our partners including British Transport Police plus Exeter City and Plymouth Argyle football clubs to deliver a safe and friendly community event.

“The match at Home Park in October was one of the best matches of the season and was a credit to both clubs, and that is the aim for the match at St James’ Park this Saturday; to be remembered for what takes place on the pitch.

“We are experienced in policing large scale sporting events, and we have worked with both clubs to ensure the Devon derby is policed appropriately. The vast majority of fans are a pleasure to work with and we look forward to welcoming them all to Exeter this weekend.”

Plymouth have sold out their allocation to their season ticket holders and the police are expecting around a half a dozen supporter coaches on the day. St James Road, behind the away end, will be closed on match day from 10.30am-3pm to allow for the away fans coaches to drop off, park and pick up fans at full time.

Pubs in and around the area will be open as usual. St Anne’s Well is currently the only pub in the area that will welcome Plymouth Argyle fans prior to the midday kick-off; we have been informed that Wetherspoon pubs in Exeter will not be serving alcohol before 11.30am on match day.

There will also be a police presence at surrounding train stations on matchday.

Supt Holmes added “Our public can expect to see a heightened police presence across the city centre this Saturday and my officers will be there to ensure a safe and peaceful match.

“Whilst the majority of fans will be in attendance to cheer their side on and to enjoy the match, there can be a small minority looking to cause disorder and we will be swift and robust in dealing with anyone intent on causing trouble.”

A spokesperson for Exeter City Football Club, said: “The Devon derby is an eagerly awaited match for both sets of fans and we’re very much looking forward to this sell-out fixture.

“We take great pride in creating a welcoming atmosphere at St James’ Park for all fans, and we’re grateful to Devon and Cornwall Police for their support for this match to enable everyone to safely enjoy an exciting game of football.”

The latest information on matchday will be tweeted via the @DCP_Football, the Force’s Football Unit dedicated twitter account.

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