BY DARREN JOHNSTONE @CCP_Sport
Prominent St Mirren supporter David MacDonald insist the club’s supporters are in favour of renaming their ground the Paisley 2021 Stadium – but admits it will always be known as Love Street to some.
The Championship outfit have struck a two-year £60,0000 deal with Renfrewshire Council to support Paisley’s bid to become UK City of Culture in 2021.
The agreement is set to be rubber-stamped by councillors at a meeting today and will see the name change from St Mirren Park.
MacDonald, who runs the popular online fans forum blackandwhitearmy.com, has welcomed the news.
He said: “I think most of the fans are in favour, you always get some kickback but I think the majority are in favour.
“Paisley does not have it’s problems to seek but the council seem to be doing a lot of good work at the moment.
“The City of Culture push is a big thing and if St Mirren can play a part in that, then I think everybody is quite happy.
“Any finances are always welcome too, especially when we’ve been relegated and are struggling a bit.
“Any money that is coming in has to be good news.
“I am hopeful, if they can get the actual award, that the sponsorship will actually go further than that.”
The Buddies moved into their current home in January 2009 but older fans still use the name of their previous ground when referring to it.
MacDonald added: “The fans all call it Love Street and will always continue to call it that, even though it is now not on Love Street.
“I don’t think anyone will have a problem with calling it the Paisley stadium with the fact that it is a name that is synonymous with the town.”
St Mirren chief executive St Mirren Brian Caldwell said: “St Mirren FC is proud of its roots in Paisley’s history, dating back to the founding of the club in the town in 1877.
“These proposals would see our stadium playing a key part of the City of Culture campaign and I am certain that our fans will get right behind it.
“The club already has many strong links with the local community. A successful bid to become UK City of Culture will bring many benefits to the town and local people, so we are really excited about lending our support to the Paisley campaign.”
Leader of Renfrewshire Council Mark Macmillan said: “The club is part of the bedrock of Paisley’s history and an essential part of the cultural life of the town and its people.”