Just under a year after DT’s demise, a bizarre (but memorable, maybe for Stags’ fans for the wrong reasons) event occurred which propelled the series and Harchester United, together with Mansfield Town F.C, into the sporting headlines. The now late John Batchelor, who was a potential buyer for Mansfield Town, thought it would help turn the club’s woeful troubles around by renaming the club – Harchester United! To the relief of many it never happened, but Jane Hewland pitched an idea for a documentary to Sky One which would cover the story, although that too never happened (sadly in that case).


Original article on BBC 606 here




League Two Mansfield Town

by Superstagsadam (U10269166) 28 March 2008


Stags to be renamed Harchester Utd under Batchelor?

UNCONVENTIONAL would-be Stags owner John Batchelor plans to rename Mansfield Town as Harchester Utd - the fictional team featured in hit Sky TV series Dream Team.
That is one of his many wacky ideas to raise the club's profile and sponsorship,
was told this morning via a leaked e-mail.

- the first media to break the news - understands that he has approached the film company which owns the rights to the programme.

Mr Batchelor - waiting to hear this morning if his late bid for Mansfield Town FC has been successful after a dramatic two days behind the scenes at Field Mill - told Chad on Friday morning: "Do we want professional football in Mansfield or not?


However, on Friday afternoon the Football League appeared to pour cold water on his plan, telling
Chad: "The club's membership of the Football League is in the name of Mansfield Town and this cannot be changed without the League's approval."

It is also believed that the League is unahppy at the idea and would be likely to veto any proposal to change the club's name.

After hearing the news, Mr Batchelor - who fell out with the body during his short-time as owner of
York City
- lambasted the League for its 'short-sighted approach'.

He told
: "In my experience of working with the League - and my observations of it since - they are likely to be underused, over-paid and short-sighted.

"If their opinion is that
Mansfield Town
can't be re-named Harchester United while in the Football League, then there is an easy solution - get relegated and then get promoted.

"Or, alternatively, if they were an elightened group, they could fully understand the benefits of having Harchester United in the League with all the publicity and commercial activity that would surround it.

"It is upto them, but it is no surprise to me if negativity abounds.

"There is always a way around things."

A spokesman for the Conference added: "Any name change would have to go to the board of directors and also be approved by the Football Association.

"I cannot speak about the
Mansfield Town
idea as I have seen nothing about it and it is all hypothetical.

"But all applications to change names of clubs are given serious consideration.

"This has been done in the past, for instance recently
and Ebbsfleet became Ebbsfleet United and they have done ok out of it.

"But the name of a club means a lot to people and any attempts to change a name for commercial reasons can backfire.