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All For White Rock
All For White Rock
Saturday, 18th Oct 2003 00:00

Why I'm All For White Rock

Why I'm All For White Rock

As I've been in favour of this name for over three years, and have made no secret of the fact, I feel obligated to put my head above the parapet and attempt to provide a favourable appraisal of its choice.

To me its selection is almost as much a rejection of the alternatives as being a positive decision in favour of the name White Rock.

Let's consider some of the alternatives:

The New Vetch - I cannot possibly take to this. I don't want to leave the Vetch - there can never be another Vetch. But - as we have no alternative to making a new start, let's make it a new start with a new name.

Morfa - time to move on from that name - it conjures up thoughts of a 12 year + delay in seeing our dream come to fruition, and should be consigned to history for what it was - a bog standard, mediocre athletics stadium.

Peoples Stadium - sounds like something from a Communist/National Socialist republic - most frequently used for mass executions of dissidents.

Phoenix Stadium - a word that usually applies to business organisations that have risen from the ashes and invariably go bust again.

Swansea Stadium - OK, but lacks any imagination whatsoever.

Named after a player - whatever we think as football fans, it isn't going to happen.

It isn't exclusively a football stadium. I have no problems with stands and function rooms being named after our heroes, but personally I've never been in favour of stadiums being named after individuals.

Now consider WHITE ROCK

Arrived at almost by default - it doesn't have the history and associated stigmas that any of the above have.

It most certainly has a history - the area (albeit the Eastern side, where the retail development will be) was the site of the White Rock copper smelting works, and there was a White Rock Ferry operating on this stretch of the river. There were at one time upwards of nine copperworks in the Lower Swansea Valley, which made Swansea the centre of the world's copper smelting industry in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (producing 90% of the entire UK output), and it is a fact that Swansea was one of the most important industrial areas in Britain, and one of the places in which the Industrial Revolution was born.

Moving on from the history, other reasons to warrant it.

The name has a Swansea connotation - with the "white" in it

White Rock - sounds like a fortress - a perfect follow on from the perception of the Vetch.

White Rock - does not need the word "stadium" attached to it. The word does not feature at Anfield, Old Trafford, Highbury, Hillsborough. Why is there a need to tag on Field, Park or Stadium ?

White Rock is easily substituted for Vetch Field in the Swansea City song.

A big plus - UNIQUE to us.

For those who say that White Rock does not sound like a football stadium :

1) In 1912 did the Vetch Field sound like a football stadium ? No, it sounded like what it was - a climbing form of vegetation.

2) White Rock will not be (much as I am disappointed) purely a football stadium. It will host other sports and activities (although I do not think as many rugby games as we fear), and will be a total community stadium.

Out of interest, the other Copper works names that I have been able to identify in the area are Landore, Llangyfelach, Hafod, Morfa, Fforest, Middle Bank and Upper Bank.

Final point - this could all be academic, as the Council are likely to sell the name to the highest bidder, but it's up to us to put enough pressure on to incorporate OUR preferred name, whatever that may be, into any ongoing commercial title.

Now it's time to duck back down below the parapet !!

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Photo: Action Images



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