Swinton have confirmed their plans to rebrand as Manchester Lions ahead of next season.
The Championship club have submitted an application to the Rugby Football League to change their name as they aim to attract bigger crowds and more sponsors.
Swinton officials have reiterated their intentions to keep their identity and heritage though, with the Lions continuing to play at Heywood Road in Sale as well as having the well-known white ‘V’ on their home shirt.
The Swinton board say the rebrand is vital to ensure the club is financially stable in future years as well as broadening its appeal to the wider Manchester community.
In a statement released by the club, it read: “This decision is most definitely not for shareholder gain, but against the true need to secure a future of the club and save it from extinction.
“It is also worth noting that the board have rejected several firm approaches to merge with other clubs in the immediate past but these approaches have been rejected because they were speculative and would do nothing to safeguard the lineage of the Lions as a stand-alone historic club.
“The board firmly believe that there is a significant opportunity to broaden the appeal of Swinton by becoming THE rugby league club of Manchester.
“This decision has not been taken lightly, but we are at a crossroads and need to take action whilst there still remains the opportunity to effect the necessary changes.”
The club’s legal entity will remain Swinton Lions RLFC Limited, the RFL official registration remains unchanged under the title Swinton Lions and the club’s financial instruments will remain unchanged.