Southend United consider U-turn over stand containing name of serial killer Rose West

Serial killer Rose West and a general view of Southend United's home Roots Hall.
Credit: PA
Rose West, left, and a view of Southend United's Roots Hall stadium. Credit: PA

A football club has come under fire from fans after striking a sponsorship deal which has left one of its stands carrying the name of a notorious serial killer.

Southend United's agreement with local estate agents Gilbert and Rose means that one side of their ground is now known as the Gilbert and Rose West Stand.

Rose West is one of the most infamous serial killers in British history, having played a part in the torture and murder of nine women between 1973 and 1987 along with her husband Fred West, and the 1971 murder of her step-daughter.

The club said it would be having discussions with the company to "come up with different arrangement of words" for the stand at Roots Hall.

Pointing out the unfortunate name, one Southend fan, Paul Napper, said: "Only Southend United could have a sponsor for the West Stand called Gilbert & Rose, inevitably leading to the Gilbert & Rose West Stand."

A Southend United spokesman said the National League club was "grateful for Gilbert and Rose's sponsorship" of the stand.

"They are a fantastic local estate agents and we look forward to working with them during this partnership, which will include a number of community projects," he added.

The spokesman said there was no signage on the stand with its new name, but that the name may have been included on marketing materials sent out with season tickets, and also featured on the website.

The Times has reported that the issue was raised by fans during a meeting with club management this week.

Rose West is currently in prison, having been convicted in 1995 of 10 counts of murder.

Her husband Fred West died by suicide that same year.

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