For a brief period at the beginning of the 1930s it seemed as if the mysterious club Thames might serve as a rival to Charlton. But the club created to use a ground soon collapsed and we absorbed a number of their players.
When Thames folded, a merger approach was made to the Custom House club by Clapton Orient, later Leyton Orient. Now Orient have aspirations to play in the Olympic Stadium and owner Barry Hearn has suggested that, if they succeed, they will re-branded as London Orient: Orient
I have nothing against Orient at all, but this does strike me as a singularly daft idea. Orient's average attendance last season was 4,298, but Hearn reckons that with the stadium move and re-branding, he can attract 27,000, which would be a capacity crowd for us. I don't think there are that many foot loose mugs out there.
Of course, we have had our re-branding issues. In the 1950s the club were known as the Robins, which always invited confusion with other clubs such as the 'Rocking' Robins of Swindon. The club tried to rebrand us as the Valiants, which also invited confusion with other clubs. The name never caught on among the fans, although ignorant members of the media occasionally use it.
I always thought 'Robins' was a bit anodyne, although, of course, we keep the jaunty Red, Red Robin song. We have reverted to our original nickname of Addicks. Some years ago I talked to a lady who went to games with her father in the 1920s and c confirmed that it was used then as a corruption of 'Addocks.
Of course if this name change idea catches on, goodness knows what might happen. Let me know if you see branding consultants around The Valley.