LEIGH Centurions are working hard to make their Sports Village home, well, more homely.
Since the club moved from Hilton Park to the superb facility which has hosted Challenge Cup semi finals and hosted Champions League winners in recent months, there has always been an argument that the stadium has a sterile feel.
But last Friday when Leigh sealed the Kingstone Press Championship Leaders Shield with a win over nearest rivals Featherstone, fans were greeted with a series of new banners spanning the width of the North Stand.
Some featured the names of Leigh heroes from the Wembley triumph of 1971 and the Championship success of 1981. Others featured Centurions logos and the town’s coat of arms.
“It’s a bit like when you move into a house,” said Leigh boss Paul Rowley. “It’s basically a shell but then you start to fill it with your own things like photos and souvenirs.
“It has taken some time for us to make the Sports Village our home but I think we’re making progress now.”
Centurions signage is also displayed outside the stadium for the first time since the club relocated and huge inflatable characters in Leigh kits have proved popular since being installed midway through the season.
It’s all part of a bigger plan to give the Centurions a greater identity in the stadium explains director Steve Openshaw.
“The thought was to get a splash of colour in the North Stand and coincide with Red and White Friday Night which was our promotion for the Featherstone game,” he said.
“We also used the slogan ‘This is our Home - It is what we make it’ at the start of the year to try and get people to buy into LSV and start creating our own history there.
“It’s all about remembering the past and the heritage of the club and bringing it to the LSV.”