THE Mayor of Gateshead has responded to calls that the town could be renamed 'Gareth SouthGateshead' following the final of Euro 2020.

The response comes after Heart North East presenter Emil Franchi asked the Mayor of Gateshead, Councillor Dot Burnett, whether the area could be renamed in honour of England’s manager for one day only on Monday following the final of the football tournament.

However, while listners to Heart North East listeners backed behind the idea, the Mayor admitted that while it’s not her remit, she thinks it’s a fantastic idea and agreed with listeners that football is coming home.

Speaking on his drivetime show on Friday, Emil told the Mayor: "Madam Mayor, we would like to mark the occasion.

"We’ve got a few North East lads in the [England] team but it wouldn’t be right just to erect a statue of those guys.

"No, I think we need to pay tribute to the man that got us here, the man that is leading England into Wembley on that final on Sunday.

"The first one we’ve been in for 55 years. I’m talking, of course, about our manager. So Madam Mayor, I have a question for you, if that’s possible?

"Is it possible for one day and one day only, could we pay tribute to the man who has done this, and can we rename your playground of Gateshead to Gareth SouthGateshead?

Hexham Courant: RADIO: Heart North East drive presenter Emil Franchi. Picture: Heart North East/GlobalRADIO: Heart North East drive presenter Emil Franchi. Picture: Heart North East/Global

Councillor Dot Burnett responded: "I think that’s an amazing idea! I don’t know whether or not the rest of the Council would agree with it."

Emil replied: "So Madam Mayor, just to get your absolute confirmation, we are allowed to refer to Gateshead as Gareth SouthGateshead on Monday?"

"You can if you want but that’s not in my remit. But it’s a fantastic idea!", Councillor Burnett added.

  • Tune into Emil Franchi on Heart North East, weekdays from 4pm – 7pm