Estate agents say Southend United bid to rename part of their ground was ‘complete coincidence’

The estate agents who sponsored Southend United’s west stand have said the renaming was a ‘complete coincidence’ and not an ill-judged ‘marketing ploy’.

Gilbert and Rose hit the headlines yesterday when football fans mocked their west stand naming deal with the National League club after they accidentally appeared to pay homage to infamous serial killer Rose West.

The image, used on the club’s website to sell tickets, shows Roots Hall’s largest stand with ‘Gilbert and Rose West Stand’ written underneath.

However, director Perry Rose has defended the renaming as a ‘complete coincidence’ and claims he thought the 3,337-capacity stand would actually be named the ‘G & R stand’.

He insisted it isn’t an ill-judged marketing ploy and said he doesn’t see any reason the name couldn’t be changed to the ‘Gilbert and Rose Stand’ to avoid the unwanted comparison.

The previously named Paul Robinson West Stand has taken on a new guise over the summer since the fifth-tier club brokered a new naming rights deal.

Serial killer Rose West tortured and abused lodgers, babysitters, children, with her husband Fred West (the couple pictured together) as well as strangers they picked up off the street before burying them in the cellar or under the patio of their home in Gloucester dubbed ‘the house of horrors’

Southend United have now confirmed they’re in discussion with Gilbert and Rose over ‘a different arrangement of words’.

The director from Gilbert and Rose said: ‘It’s a complete coincidence. I think we thought it was going to be called the G & R Stand but this was no marketing ploy from Southend or ourselves.

‘It was the only stand available. We’ve got Gilbert and Rose right across the top and it is the west stand, but they could call it the Gilbert and Rose Stand, they don’t have to call it the West Stand.

‘I saw the comparison through my friend’s football group chat because he’s a season ticket holder and he sent it through to me.

‘We’re going to have a chat with the club and see what they want to do.

‘It’s a name and nothing more. We just want to concentrate on getting locals into the ground and make sure Southend goes up this year, that’s the main goal.’

Gilbert and Rose have pledged to give tickets to local schools every home game as part of the deal.

A viral tweet on the subject has been liked more than 40,000 times and retweeted 5,000 times.

The tweet said: ‘Southend United have sold the naming rights for their West Stand to the local estate agents Gilbert & Rose. I don’t think they thought this one through.’

Southend United have been mocked for selling the naming rights for the West Stand to estate agents Gilbert and Rose. Pictured: A stand at the football club on match day

Southend United have been mocked for selling the naming rights for the West Stand to estate agents Gilbert and Rose. Pictured: A stand at the football club on match day 

This means fans will now sit in the stadium in what is now called the Gilbert and Rose West Stand

This means fans will now sit in the stadium in what is now called the Gilbert and Rose West Stand

Rose West: One of Britain’s most prolific serial killers

Serial killer Rose West, now 68, and her husband Fred West were arrested in 1994 and charged with nine counts of murder. 

Rose was later charged with a tenth – the killing of her stepdaughter Charmaine West, eight, in 1971. 

Lodgers, babysitters, children, as well as strangers they picked up off the street, were tortured and abused before being buried in the cellar or under the patio of their home in Gloucester dubbed ‘the house of horrors’. 

The pair even killed their eldest daughter Heather in June 1987.

Fred, who confessed the killings, took his own life in his cell while on remand at HMP Birmingham on New Year’s Day, 1995.

Other victims included Alison Chambers, 16, Shirley Robinson, 18, Juanita Mott, 18, Shirley Hubbard, 15, Theresa Siegnethaler, 21, Lucy Partington, 21, Carol Ann Cooper, 15, Lynda Gough, 19, Rena Costello (Fred’s ex-wife), 27, Charmaine West (Fred’s daughter), 8, and Anne McFall, 18.

Fred is also believed to have also killed 15-year-old Mary Bastholm, although her remains have never been found.

Rose, who has consistently claimed her innocence, was found guilty on all counts and is currently serving a life prison sentence.

One said: ‘It was either them or BetFred.’

Another joked: ‘Is it true the club made a killing on this deal?’

A third said: ‘Got people talking about it though didn’t it. Any publicity is good publicity, for both the club and the sponsor.’

One concluded: ‘Surely a rethink about wording is required!!’

A spokesperson for Southend United said yesterday: ‘Southend United are grateful for Gilbert and Rose’s support and we’re looking forward to working with them this season.’

Rose West collaborated with husband Fred West in the murder and torture of multiple women in the 1970s and 1980s and is still in prison.

Rosemary, now 68, remains in prison while her husband, who confessed the killings, took his on life in his cell while on remand at HMP Birmingham on New Year’s Day, 1995.

The pair even killed their eldest daughter Heather in June 1987. 

Other victims included Alison Chambers, 16, Shirley Robinson, 18, Juanita Mott, 18, Shirley Hubbard, 15, Theresa Siegnethaler, 21, Lucy Partington, 21, Carol Ann Cooper, 15, Lynda Gough, 19, Rena Costello (Fred’s ex-wife), 27, Charmaine West (Fred’s daughter), 8, and Anne McFall, 18. 

Fred is also believed to have also killed 15-year-old Mary Bastholm, although her remains have never been found. 

With her sentence confirmed as whole-life tariff, and with Rose having long ago decided not to appeal, it means the only way West will leave prison is in a coffin.

She is believed to enjoy a middle class life at HMP Low Newton, in County Durham. 

It was reported by the Daily Mail in 2017 that she has her own en-suite cell, complete with curtains at the window, a ‘fluffy rug’ on the floor and a coffee machine, TV and radio.

Rose (pictured in 1995), who has consistently claimed her innocence, was found guilty on all counts and is currently serving a life prison sentence

Rose (pictured in 1995), who has consistently claimed her innocence, was found guilty on all counts and is currently serving a life prison sentence

She is also said to listen to the Archers, entertain other prisoners, teaching them how to cross-stitch (an elaborate form of embroidery), playing Monopoly, or giving one another foot massages. According to sources in the jail, West likes to see herself as the prison matriarch.

‘She is always very welcoming to new convicts and often befriends some of the harder cases coming into the prison,’ said a second source.

‘Despite her years in prison, she has always maintained her innocence and encourages others to fight their cases if they also claim they are not guilty.

‘She sees herself as a barrack-room lawyer and will spend a lot of time helping people with legal problems.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk

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