They may not appear the most intimidating tool ever used on the terraces to strike fear into opposing teams but ask anyone who witnessed the scenes in the 1970s when 20,000 fans all launched balloons at the same time and they will tell you they created quite a spectacle.

Now more than 30 years on Villa fans are set to recreate those scenes when they turn this Sunday's televised match with Everton into a "balloon day".

It is the idea of diehard Villa fans Paul Handsacre and Grant Adams, both Sutton Coldfield businessman, who between them and their friends have already organised more than 10,000 balloons which will be launched from the Holte End and North stand ends of Villa Park just before the 2pm kick off.

They are now urging every fan going to the match to bring along their own balloons to add to the spectacle.

Among those who will be watching from the stands will be Villa legend Dennis Mortimer who made his debut for Villa in November 1975 and can recall the occasion when he walked out on to the pitch for the first time to be greeted by thousands of balloons.

Paul said: "The idea is to recreate some of the atmosphere from the 1970s.

"To this day there are photographs of games such as the Villa v West Ham United match of Boxing Day 1975 and Birmingham v Villa in April 1976 and the mass of balloons on the terraces.

"Dennis Mortimer said at the time that the feeling among the players was that the balloons made the ground quite intimidating for visiting teams and that is what we want to recreate."

Handsacre, who has also organised a bevy of beauties and a compressor to blow up the thousands of balloons expected, said balloons would be distributed at both ends of the stands.

Mortimer himself said he thought anything which raises the atmosphere on match days was sure to be a winner.

He said: "I vaguely remember the balloons back in the 1970s though to be honest as a player they could be a real pain because we ended up having to stamp on them before we could even get the game started.

"I made my debut for Villa after signing from Coventry City in November 1975 and the balloons obviously helped - we won 4-0."

Mortimer added: "There really is a great atmosphere now at Villa Park and it is improving all the time. By lifting the mood of the fans it definitely inspires the team as Villa's recent home performances this season have verified."

Adams said: "The balloons really took off and in some games there were up to 20,000 balloons all being released from the stands at the same time.

"It was an incredible sight and really lifted the fans and the players.

"One of the games we all took balloons to was the derby with Birmingham City at St Andrew's in 1976. The image of the Villa fans launching thousands of balloons from the Tilton Road End was captured by Villa photographer Terry Weir and features in his book The Weir and The Wonderful."

"We hope we can recreate some of that mood today."

Aston Villa chairman Randy Lerner and director General Charles C Krulak have already sanctioned the balloons.

Krulak said: "We first heard about the fans' initiative with the balloons via the fans' websites that we are involved with and thought it was a wonderful idea.

"I went back to report to our Chief Executive Richard Fitzgerald and most importantly John Handley our stadium safety officer to check they had no problems with it and they were both very keen on the idea.

"The fans will now launch the project this weekend and I can't wait to see how it creates an atmosphere.

"If it is a winner the club will certainly be looking to make it a regular thing and of course we as a club will make every effort to support it in future - it is not right that fans should have to pay for the balloons and we hope as a club we will able to take care of that in future."