A FAMOUS old stand at Burnley Football Club has been rebranded with a “wicked” new name as part of a sponsorship deal.
Club bosses unveiled the “Totally Wicked Bob Lord Stand” which was renamed after a deal with a local electronic cigarette company.
Fans got a first glimpse of the sponsorship deal with Blackburn-based firm Totally Wicked during the Clarets Championship clash with Brighton.
But the club are expected to officially launch the partnership at Turf Moor later this month.
The news has been met with mixed reaction from fans with some questioning whether the deal was disrespectful to the late Burnley chairman Bob Lord.
But club officials said Mr Lord’s relatives were consulted on the sponsorship deal and believe it will give the club a boost.
A statement from Burnley Football Club said: “We are delighted to enter a partnership with Totally Wicked who are making great strides themselves in the education of getting people to stop smoking.
“We are aware of the implications of the name being associated with Bob Lord but we have spoken with members of his family and both sides have agreed that it will be beneficial to the club.”
Totally Wicked branding has been erected on the stand and it is believed the company, which has recently opened an e-cigarette outlet in Burnley, could promote their product among fans on matchdays. Supporters could even be offered help to quit smoking.
The electronic cigarettes can currently be used in the designated smoking areas in the ground but club officials are investigating whether fans can use the products inside the ground.
Supporters took to fans’ forum website Clarets Mad to voice their opinions on the Totally Wicked sponsorship deal.
One poster, SMBFC, wrote: “Sounds stupid and disrespectful, wonder how much was paid to sponsor the stand? Never heard of them.”
But Clarets Mad poster mgill87 said: “I must say I was somewhat bemused by this.
“It’s rather odd and is so colloquial that it sounds a little disrespectful. However, if it’s bringing money into the club then fair play.”
Fan jclay01 added: “Personally I don’t think it’s disrespectful. It brings money into the club. I personally use this company’s product to quit smoking and if on a live TV it promotes a positive that there is an alternative out there and people can quit given time.”
The Bob Lord Stand was created in 1974 to replace the Brunshaw Road Stand at a cost of £480,000.
The new stand held 2,800 fans and was officially opened by the then Prime Minister Edward Heath.
Named after the famous Clarets chairman, the Bob Lord Stand contains a board room and luxurious seats for Burnley’s and visiting club’s directors.