Warwickshire County Cricket Club and Birmingham City Council have officially scrapped proposals to rebrand its T20 team Birmingham Bears and rename the Edgbaston stadium as part of a ten-year sponsorship deal.
They issued a joint-statement claiming the £400,000 a year deal was unaffordable to the cash-strapped local authority but adding that there would be closer co-operation on community and joint marketing initiatives.
The club is already making Birmingham £1.3 million a year repayments on a £20 million loan from Birmingham City Council in 2009 to fund the new stand, floodlights and development of Edgbaston stadium.
It has struggled with expected income down after last year’s lucrative Test match was washed out by rain and a failure to secure an Ashes Test this summer and the club was looking to sell naming rights to the stadium.
But now the proposal, published this week has been withdrawn.
A joint-statement issued by council and club said: “Warwickshire County Cricket Club and Birmingham City Council have a strong, existing working relationship and are genuine partners in promoting cricket both in the city and globally.
“The cricket club recognises the city council’s challenging financial position and the difficulties involved in injecting further finance.
“But we are both committed to seeing the investment in the new stand proving a success and want to develop our partnership further to not only promote cricket amongst our communities but also in terms of marketing the city.
“We will continue to discuss ways in which we can mutually support each other, particularly through a programme of community-led initiatives.”