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Villa Park Station: A Proposal


JohnCresswell
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On the VillaTalk messageboard users get the chance to ask a member of the Aston Villa Board, General Krulak, questions about the running of the club. One thing that was brought up wa regarding the renaming of the train station next to villa Park.

Trevor Fisher, from Aston villa fanzine Villa Matters has had a long standing interest in this idea. He asks for your opinions....

Aston Villa has to develop to meet new challenges. Amongst the most important of these is to raise its profile so media and public alike have a clear image of Villa as a forward looking and progressive club.

While many possibilities may be costly or controversial, for example renaming Villa Park after a sponsor, which is NOT desirable, one move which could be accomplished relatively cheaply is to rename the local Witton Station as Villa Park Station.

The advantages are clear. No longer would people get off at Aston Station thinking they were near the ground. Witton as the station nearest Villa Park would be seen as the natural arrival point. The name would appear on rail maps all over the country. At New Street Station, thousands of people every day would hear the name broadcast by station announcers. Trevor Fisher, editor of the Villa Fanzine VILLA MATTERS says “The name would appear on rail maps all over the country At New Street Station thousands of people would hear the name broadcast by station announcersâ€. This would help the public locate the club – not many people realise Villa are a Birmingham club.

There is a precedent. Back in the 1930s the great Arsenal manager, Herbert Chapman, secured a name change for the local tube station Gillespie Road. This was renamed Arsenal and appeared on the tube maps. Everyone knew where Highbury stadium was.

The Villa fanzine VILLA MATTERS is sounding out support among fans for a campaign to persuade the Strategic Rail Authority to rename Witton Station as Villa Park Station. Given sufficient support the fanzine will ask the club to make the approach to the authorities, or make the approach themselves.

Fans are asked to respond to the simple question

DO YOU THINK WITTON STATION SHOULD BE RENAMED VILLA PARK STATION YES/NO?

Let us know your views and whether you are prepared to help the campaign

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The advantages are clear. No longer would people get off at Aston Station thinking they were near the ground.

you would think all of them fulham/blackburn/bolton fans would realise by now that they keep getting off at the wrong station and then missing the games, i always wondered where they had all got to

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No. At least not yet.

I believe that it has been looked at and that various issues present a hurdle. Train timetables and so on.

These issues aren't insurmountable, but equally the renaming of a railway station is not exactly the highest of priorities.

I'd personally prefer things the way they are with the club - people have looked at it, decided for now, as I understand it, not to take it any further and instead to concentrate on more pressing issues and on more immediately achieveable issues.

It's great that this sort of thing was looked at by the club, but it's also true that there's a limit on what the team of people can achieve in any given period.

One for the back burner, perhaps, for me.

Hopefully we will get to the sitaution where the club's image and profile is higher due to on the pitch matters, and then maybe the council will, along with the club, be able to take this sort of cosmetic action.

First things first, though.

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On the VillaTalk messageboard users get the chance to ask a member of the Aston Villa Board, General Krulak, questions about the running of the club. One thing that was brought up wa regarding the renaming of the train station next to villa Park. :P

Trevor Fisher, from Aston villa fanzine Villa Matters has had a long standing interest in this idea. He asks for your opinions....

Aston Villa has to develop to meet new challenges. Amongst the most important of these is to raise its profile so media and public alike have a clear image of Villa as a forward looking and progressive club.

While many possibilities may be costly or controversial, for example renaming Villa Park after a sponsor, which is NOT desirable, one move which could be accomplished relatively cheaply is to rename the local Witton Station as Villa Park Station.

The advantages are clear. No longer would people get off at Aston Station thinking they were near the ground. Witton as the station nearest Villa Park would be seen as the natural arrival point. The name would appear on rail maps all over the country. At New Street Station, thousands of people every day would hear the name broadcast by station announcers. Trevor Fisher, editor of the Villa Fanzine VILLA MATTERS says “The name would appear on rail maps all over the country At New Street Station thousands of people would hear the name broadcast by station announcersâ€. This would help the public locate the club – not many people realise Villa are a Birmingham club.

There is a precedent. Back in the 1930s the great Arsenal manager, Herbert Chapman, secured a name change for the local tube station Gillespie Road. This was renamed Arsenal and appeared on the tube maps. Everyone knew where Highbury stadium was.

The Villa fanzine VILLA MATTERS is sounding out support among fans for a campaign to persuade the Strategic Rail Authority to rename Witton Station as Villa Park Station. Given sufficient support the fanzine will ask the club to make the approach to the authorities, or make the approach themselves.

Fans are asked to respond to the simple question

DO YOU THINK WITTON STATION SHOULD BE RENAMED VILLA PARK STATION YES/NO?

Let us know your views and whether you are prepared to help the campaign

only one answer yes
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Not often say this but I disagree Pete. Good Publicity and profile is something this club has seemed to stifle in the past.

People use that line not only to go to the match but also a through route for a lot of other places. It could easily be argued that without Villa either Witton or Aston station would have closed down.

This will not be to either the detriment of the club or the great changes that the new board are putting in place. For me its a YES

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Fair enough Ian.

Sometimes a qualified answer gets lost a bit on the internet.

I'm not against it (later).

I was trying to put forward the point that it HAS been looked at and ruled out for now, according to GK. I accept his answer.

Bearing that in mind, and the fact he has explained the reasons, I just felt the idea, though a decent one, is one for later, rather than now.

I'm happy that it's been looked at. I trust that it has been decided "not right now" for valid reasons, and frankly, like I said, there are more pressing issues anyway.

I'd rather accept that GK, Russ A and the others concentrate on what they can achieve than what they can't.

One step at a time.

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I think it would be foolish not to consider such a move. The area needs investment, and exposure is one way of securing that. Not to exclude the fact that investment into Villa itself means a 'knock on effect' for the rest of the area. I went to school in Aston and it has always been clear that AVFC was integral to the area.

While it may cause problems to our rail network, its about time they invested a little, and who knows, having an important land mark so easily accessible both visually for tourists and physically for commuters, might link other areas to the rail network in the future.

While some may say there is a Villa monopoly going on or things are moving too quickly, our council members should embrace such a massive investment potential, and the willing parties with the capital to work with.

With attendances up, and motivation high, i think we should enthuse AVFC to invest everywhere, and work with them to suit the local needs. Then, let them buy they players! They seem to be showing enough ambition!

Ill offer any help I can.

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A great idea and i hope it goes ahead but if the Police have a say (as they always do) will they say that thats where the away fans get directed to get off and could cause problems with fans mixing. The queues at Aston are a nightmare after the game imagine 3000 stupid Mancs or noses coming out after the game and everyone heading to Villa Park station.

Otherwise i'm up for it.

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No.

Surely it should be Aston Villa station?

The Arsenal exaple for instance didnt re-name it to 'Highbury' station.

I realise that may cause a conflict with Aston station. But if the idea is to promote the name of the club then it must be Aston Villa station.

However, if you go with naming it after the groud there is a potential marketing opportunity, any sponsorship of the stadium could be incorporated into the train station name. Not sure how i feel about that but there you go.

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Having now read the thread and seeing Blandy highlight the generals answer on this...

I would like a name change to Aston Villa station (not Villa Park as it defeats the whole point...) but I agree it isnt a priority.

Not something I want to see the board pressured over anyway. They need a bit of time and have really been bombarded with all kinds of requests to make changes. It's why i've never brought anything up on the General Krulak thread.

Let them worry about these things more when they've all settled into their roles and dont forget our CEO has only just joined and has the transfer window to contend with.

Also isnt Trevor Fisher the same bloke who moaned about the takeover? Is this a genuine action from him or does he has motives to attack/pressure this board that he seemed so opposed to?

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Geoff - AVFC have now changed. How I read your post is that this will take up a lot of effort from people which in turn will be to the detriment of other things?

The new guys in charge are obviously bringing a different mentality to the club in that people are now being allowed to do the things they are paid for rather than having everything approved from on high. That being the case this sort of initiative, along with various others discussed can be managed by people experienced and used to marketing. The playing side and initiatives like this are vastly different areas being addressed by differing teams with little in the way of dual pulls of people's efforts.

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