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#PilgrimsAtWembley - Part Four

28 May 2016

BANK Holiday Monday sounds like it would be a pretty reasonable time to go on holiday. I mean, the clue is in the name.

It is not a good time to book a holiday if you're a Pilgrim though, as a few members of the Green Army have found out - and quickly rearranged to make sure they get to Wembley. 

Inspired by a tweet from an Australian fan who is travelling from Down Under to watch the Pilgrims play AFC Wimbledon in the Sky Bet League 2 Play-Off Final, we asked which of our fans are making the most effort to watch the #PilgrimsAtWembley this time round.

Play-off semi-final hero Peter Hartley will select his top five Pilgrimages, and the winners will be given an Argyle play-off gift to add to what is already going to be a special occasion.

In the build-up to Monday’s game, we will be presenting a selection of the best #PilgrimsAtWembley stories for the Green Army to share in the lengths that some of our supporters will go to in order to see the mighty Greens under the famous arch.

Liam Donovan is traveling back from a holiday with his football team to walk up Wembley Way and support Argyle. 

"It's not the longest in terms of distance," said Liam. "But in terms of the most amount of public transport done in 24 hours it must be up there."

"I have a football team holiday booked to leave for to Benidorm for a football weekend away as we have won the league this season. However, it lands on the bank holiday weekend when Argyle play in the final at Wembley. Therefore in order to get to the game I will be travelling by bus from Benidorm to Allicante. From there I will fly to Birmingham by plane and then get the train from Birmingham to London. Next I will get the tube to the ground. Then I will get a coach ride home back down to Plymouth.
 
"Safe to say the Arsenal, Manchester City, Liverpool and so on fans that I am going away with are a bit surprised I would do that much to watch the Greens at Wembley, but watching Argyle in the Play-Off Final will mean everything."

Alec Rickard is stopping en route to his family holiday to Pontins Southport to watch the game at Wembley. 

"I had already arranged a family holiday," said Alec, "at Pontins Southport for the bank holiday weekend, as a way of breaking the journey on our way to visit family in Scotland for half term. However, I have managed to convince my wife that as it was exactly 20 years ago when I was at the old Wembley to see Argyle win promotion this was also the perfect way for me to visit the new Wembley for the first time.

"Therefore, I am going to catch an early morning train from Southport to London Euston, then tube it across to Wembley. Meanwhile, my wife will drive our four kids to Scotland and I will then get to Gatwick later to fly to Glasgow that night to reunite with them."

Alan Kenah and his wife are traveling from Spain, where they live, to see Argyle at Wembley. Alan has Argyle-supporting family members coming from places near and far to watch the Sky Bet League 2 Play-Off Final.

"This coming Sunday," said Alan, "my wife and I will be boarding our flight at Malaga Airport, from Spain to Gatwick. We will then travel onwards by car to our hotel at Wembley so that we can watch the big match against Wimbledon.

"We will be meeting up with many family members who are all Plymouth born and bred but sadly, due to work and marriage, live away from our great and proud city. My nephew Paul is travelling from Denmark, my sons are travelling from Nottingham and Devizes, other nephews are travelling from Basingstoke and many more are travelling from Plymouth.  A Facebook account called the 'Jolly Oggies' has been set up so that we can all discuss Argyle games and coordinate travel arrangements to Argyle games.  

"Due to modern technology I was able to watch both the Play-Off Semi-Final games against Portsmouth here in Spain and was absolutely delighted at the results. I was especially glad as I have many friends in the Portsmouth area and it feels great to have the bragging rights. Well done to Derek Adams, his coaching staff, players, the board and the back room staff for getting the success starved Plymouth Argyle to Wembley.  Let's hope we get the promotion we deserve.

"Having been a life-long supporter of Argyle for the past 62 years I am delighted that we are going to Wembley for the Play-Off Final. We were at the previous final at Wembley so we can remember how exciting that day was and just hope and pray that come 5pm on Monday, May 30 we will be just as excited again.

"I can't tell you how proud we are of Argyle achieving what they have accomplished this season, whatever the result on Monday all my family will be forever Argyle supporters and I'm sure the Jolly Oggies will be meeting up again next season, hopefully in League One."

Paul Harben is traveling from Jersey with his two sons to watch the final.

"Not much of a pilgrimage," said Paul. "But me and two of my boys, Jack and Tom will be flying in from Jersey. Jack and I also flew in for the second leg so Peter Hartley is costing me a fortune! Well worth it though, what a night that was!"

Another Pilgrim putting in some miles to get to the final is Trevor Graham, who will make the 850-mile round trip from his home in North Ayrshire to Wembley to watch the Sky Bet League 2 Play-Off Final.

"I'm setting off from North Ayrshire," said Trevor. "It is a one hour drive to Glasgow airport, where I will get a flight to Heathrow. Then I will spend an hour on the underground and the reverse back home after the game. I'll set off around 7am and I'll get home around midnight. The costs are worth it to see my beloved Argyle at Wembley. It's an 850 mile round trip."

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