CITY leaders have written to media organisations calling on them to continue using the St James’ Park name.
Newcastle Council leader Nick Forbes and his opposite number David Faulkner have signed the letter which details a council motion that opposes the name change to the Sports Direct Arena.
Coun Forbes and Coun Faulkner say in the letter: “The motion requests that the city council write to the media and asks that they continue to use the name of St James’ Park in all reporting and refuse to use the name Sports Direct Arena.
“We respectfully request that you take this approach. For its part, the city council has taken the decision not to change any wayfinding signs which bear the name St James’ Park, and calls on the club to reconsider their decision.
“We would ask that you acknowledge the strength of opposition among Newcastle fans against changing the name of the stadium and continue to call it St James’ Park in all reporting.”
The club announced in November it was changing the name to the Sports Direct Arena in a bid to attract a sponsor keen to acquire the naming rights to the ground.
Sir Richard Branson, whose Virgin Money brand took over the club’s shirt sponsorship from Northern Rock this month, said his firm wasn’t interested in the stadium name.
Experts have estimated a deal could be worth up to £3m per year to the club.