Name our new venue after Lester Piggott

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With the naming and opening of Doncaster’s new town square now complete, more up-to-date information is urgently required regarding the name of the new performance venue, and in particular, the 620-seat theatre.

This is borne out by a number of performers, including Duggie Brown and Ian McMillan, when on stage at the Civic Theatre, Doncaster, recently, referring to the new auditorium, which will replace the Civic next year, as the ‘new place.’ This desperately needs scotching.

On May 30 when ’60s attraction The Searchers appeared, anchormen Frank Allen and John McNally took things a little bit further by asking the audience if anyone knew what the Civic’s replacement was going to be called.

Response? Not a titter. Surely, this is sound evidence that the naming issue needs prompt attention. Once again, it would be a good idea to engage the public with this procedure.

Doncaster Council Watch had considered submitting a suggestion for formal consideration in connection with the naming of the town square, but in the interest of fairness, decided not to do so because we were known to at least one of the judges.

However, our railway heritage is something that was discussed, including the name (Sir Nigel) Gresley, which is already well represented in Doncaster with Gresley House, White Rose Way, and Gresley Road, Balby, as well as a number of residential properties throughout the borough.

What Doncaster Council Watch did conclude was that our railway heritage has been given away to York, and more importantly, it is the future that must count.

Doncaster Racecourse desperately needs a shot in the arm because of deteriorating attendances.

We thought that this would have been adequately covered when we singled out Lester Piggott, who won the St Leger eight times with St Paddy (1960), Aurelius (1961), Ribocco (1967), Ribero (1968), Nijinsky (1970), Athens Wood (1971), Boucher (1972) and Commanche Run (1984).

Therefore, our selection, obviously, would have been Lester Square. Piggott, now retired, still visits Doncaster Racecourse for charity events.

Whilst Piggott would not, necessarily, be an apt name for a new theatre, his 1970 mount Nijinsky, which was the first horse for 35 years to win the English Triple Crown (2000 Guineas, the Derby and St Leger) at Doncaster, would?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were to be invited, bearing in mind Prince William’s mum, Diana Princess of Wales, opened The Dome, Doncaster on November 26, 1989.

Ray Nortrop, Doncaster Council Watch, PO Box 75, Doncaster DN4