What's in a name?
Leyton Orient owner Barry Hearn is considering the ultimate re-branding, re-naming the club London Orient. They would then be the only league club with 'London' in the title. The idea is to raise the club's profile so that it seen as a city club.
The move would probably only go ahead if Orient move into the Olympic Stadium. West Ham United, the likely tenants, have made it clear that they do not want to ground share with Orient.
So is this a brilliant marketing wheeze or does it come straight from the daft ideas department? Last season Orient had attendances of 4,298 at Brisbane Road, but the lower tier capacity at the Olympic Stadium would be 27,000. Hearn reckons that with a series of ticket offers, including free season tickets for the under 18s in London and for members of the armed forces, he is quite confident that he could sell out.
Are there that many foot loose football supporters in London who would be taken in by a name change and an admittedly iconic venue? Is the appetite for League 1 football that big? Hearn argues that Orient could be a more successful team by the time they move.
Orient originally got their name from local shipping company Orient Line. In 1898 they became Clapton Orient, They moved to Leyton in 1937 and changed their name to Leyton Orient after the Second World War. From 1966 to 1987 they were known simply as Orient.